More than March Madness: Why downtown Houston will be buzzing in late March

Adam Winkler Image
Thursday, January 19, 2023
Why downtown Houston will be buzzing in late March
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When the NCAA Men's Final Four comes to H-town for the third time in 12 years, the city will be the center of the college basketball world and be a sports Mecca.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- In two-and-a-half months, the city of Houston will host yet another marquee event. But when the National Collegiate Athletic Association Men's Final Four comes to the Bayou City for the third time in 12 years, H-town will not only be the center of the college basketball world - but it will also be a sports Mecca.

"An incredible playing venue in NRG Stadium," NCAA Senior VP of Basketball Dan Gavitt said when beginning to list the reasons Houston is a fitting host for the championship games. "The downtown footprint is so welcoming to fans and our teams. To have the Final Four Fan Fest and March Madness Music Festival all walkable in downtown Houston."

However, when the NCAA brings its marquee basketball event to Houston, our city will not only be showcasing basketball. Unlike when H-town has hosted other high-profile events, the Men's Final Four will not be the only game in town. For example, when NRG Stadium hosted Super Bowl LI in 2017, the Astros were not in season, and the Rockets played at home Friday but not again until the following Tuesday.

Here's a list of the sporting events taking place in/around downtown during Final Four week. Please note these are only events downtown - and do not include an XFL game at TDECU Stadium on the campus of the University of Houston or other events at NRG Stadium.

  • Tuesday, March 28 at 5:30 p.m., Toyota Center: McDonald's All-American Game (girls)
  • Tuesday, March 28 at 7:10 p.m., Minute Maid Park: Space Cowboys vs. Astros
  • Tuesday, March 28 at 8 p.m., Toyota Center: McDonald's All-American Game (boys)
  • Thursday, March 30, Minute Maid Park: White Sox vs. Astros (Opening Day)
  • Friday, March 31, George R. Brown Convention Center: Final Four Fan Fest
  • Friday, March 31, Discovery Green: March Madness Music Festival
  • Friday, March 31, Minute Maid Park: White Sox vs. Astros
  • Friday, March 31 at 7 p.m., Toyota Center: Pistons vs. Rockets
  • Saturday, April 1 at 8 a.m., Downtown: Final Four 4 Miler
  • Saturday, April 1, GRB: Final Four Fan Fest
  • Saturday, April 1, Discovery Green: March Madness Music Festival
  • Saturday, April 1, Minute Maid Park: White Sox vs. Astros
  • Sunday, April 2, Downtown: Final Four Dribble
  • Sunday, April 2, George R. Brown Convention Center: Final Four Fan Fest
  • Sunday, April 2, Discovery Green: March Madness Music Festival
  • Sunday, April 2, Minute Maid Park: White Sox vs. Astros
  • Sunday, April 2 at 6 p.m., Toyota Center: Lakers vs. Rockets
  • Monday, April 3, George R. Brown Convention Center: Final Four Fan Fest

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