Albuquerque, New Mexico, has been chosen as the site of the second annual T-Mobile Invitational national high school basketball tournament.
The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and T-Mobile USA, Inc. have selected one of the most notable arenas in the country – “The Pit” on the campus of the University of New Mexico – to host the 2007 event.
The T-Mobile Invitational, set for December 28-29, will showcase eight of the top high school teams in the nation determined in part through USA TODAY's “Super 25” high school basketball rankings. The eight-team tournament will feature four boys and four girls teams and is composed only of schools from NFHS-member associations.
The La Cueva High School boys team and the Gallup High School girls team will represent New Mexico in this year’s event. The other six teams will be top-ranked teams from across the country. The specific schools and first-round matchups will be announced at a later date.
“We’re delighted to bring the T-Mobile Invitational to New Mexico in 2007,” said Mike Belcher, director of sponsorships and entertainment marketing, T-Mobile USA. “T-Mobile firmly believes in the positive benefits of interscholastic sports and activities and we’re proud to showcase some of the top talent in the nation in front of some of the best basketball fans in the country.”
The inaugural T-Mobile Invitational was held last December in Seattle with the nation’s No. 1 ranked girls team, Collins Hill High School (Suwanee GA), and the boys team from Fairfax High School (Los Angeles, CA) taking home the championship trophies.
“Last year’s event was better than we could have imagined, “said Robert F. Kanaby, NFHS executive director. “This is the first basketball tournament the NFHS has ever sponsored and joins our other national educational initiatives to help communicate the important role that activity programs play in high school education.”
The partnership between T-Mobile and the NFHS, the national leadership organization for high school sports and fine arts activities, strives to encourage student participation in interscholastic activities and emphasizes the importance of these programs in preparing students for life. In addition to the basketball tournament, the multi-year agreement between the NFHS and T-Mobile includes T-Mobile’s sponsorship of the NFHS annual student leadership conference, plus other initiatives and events. T-Mobile is also the Official Telecommunications Partner of the NFHS.
In addition to the two days of games, all coaches and players of the participating schools will join local T-Mobile employees for a T-Mobile Huddle Up community service project on December 27 designed to improve the afterschool facilities at a local community-based organization or public school (site to be determined). T-Mobile Huddle Up is T-Mobile USA’s community outreach program connecting kids, primarily from single-parent families, in high need urban communities, to positive people, places and programs. T-Mobile Huddle Up focuses on addressing the critical need for safe, high-quality, afterschool programs for kids nationwide.