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June 9, 2013

NCSU details its side of the PNC scheduling conflicts




On Saturday afternoon, NC State communications emailed out a document to help clarify its positions in the ongoing PNC Arena scheduling dispute.

The Carolina Hurricanes have complained that NC State is holding excessive amounts of dates. The following document from NC State was "in response to several questions from media and supporters about PNC Arena scheduling issues and clarification of facts."

Hold Dates for the PNC Arena

Overall

• For the current academic/athletic year covering the football and men's basketball (non-conference and conference) seasons which run from Aug. 29 2013 to March 8 2014, NC State originally held 91 dates out of 192 possible dates for 28 scheduled contests.

o Comparing to last year, NC State originally held 11 fewer days this year and scheduled four more events than in 2012-13.

• While NC State will hold 23 contests in PNC Arena throughout the year, the Hurricanes will likely play more than 40 home games throughout their season. Given the overlapping schedules from mid-October - to early March, it is difficult each year to schedule additional events.

o As listed below in "Concessions," NC State has released two full weeks each year during this time to provide Gale Force opportunities to schedule multi-day events such as the circus or ice shows. NC State has also released all but two Fridays and every Monday throughout this time to provide Gale Force more opportunity for scheduling events.

o There are several months where neither team uses the facility for basketball or hockey, and about seven months each year when NC State does not use the arena, allowing many opportunities for Gale Force to schedule events.

By Season

• For the Football season, 26 dates were originally held by NC State. By February 25 (when the ACC released the schedule), all but the eight dates needed for scheduled games were released, six months prior to the first home game.

• For the Men's Basketball non-conference portion of the season, 29 dates were initially held by NC State. By May 31, NC State released all but 13 dates for nine scheduled games and four additional dates needed to complete the schedule as well as the university's winter commencement.

• For the Men's Basketball ACC Conference portion of the season, 40 dates are held. Once the university receives its schedule from the ACC, in August or September, all other dates will be immediately released.

• There are five days that were held for both Football and Men's Basketball for AY 2013-14 (doubling up to reduce the number of days held).

PNC Operating Agreement

• NC State and Gale Force are operating under the same contractual agreement that has been in place for several years.

• The operating agreement provides that NC State use its best efforts to deliver its men's basketball schedule by June 1. NC State uses its best efforts throughout the year to fulfill this responsibility. In addition to the listed concessions below, before June 1 NC State informed Gale Force that we had scheduled nine games and are holding an additional four dates throughout the fall necessary to complete non-conference scheduling.

• The "change" that has been referenced either directly or indirectly in recent reporting refers to the fact that over the past several years Gale Force has contacted the ACC prior to finalization of the Men's Basketball schedule to remove select dates from consideration for NC State games to be scheduled in PNC Arena. Within the last year, as NC State was examining how to secure a more competitive schedule and more national exposure, Athletics administration became aware of this practice and requested its contractual right to scheduling priority be honored and that the ACC work directly with NC State on the scheduling of its Men's Basketball games prior to any days/dates/times being removed from scheduling consideration.

o As NC State is focused on building a national caliber men's basketball program, our coaches need the flexibility to schedule the best teams at the best times.

o As NC State continues to build a top-ranked team, there is both increased interest and demand from fans and networks to play at prime times. In building a top-ranked program, we need the ability to schedule these games.

o Our interest is also providing the best opportunity to schedule contests in way that meets the needs and best interests of our student-athletes. This will best ensure our student athletes will miss fewer classes due to travel and have a balanced home and away schedule, which also supports their academic commitments.

• As we do each year through the scheduling process, following the terms of the PNC Arena operating agreement, NC State remains committed to using our best efforts to get schedules worked out.

Concessions

In addition to the above, NC State has provided a number of concessions (not required by contract) in order to try and provide Gale Force additional dates for their scheduling needs.

• Despite the inconvenience and challenges presented to the basketball program, NC State agreed to release PNC Arena for 7-10 days each February for Gale Force to book the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus. This creates a significant challenge for NC State as this week falls within the ACC basketball schedule. However, NC State agreed to this in the spirit of good faith and cooperation.

• NC State has also released PNC Arena during its annual December exam period, providing Gale Force the opportunity to book a second multi-day event during basketball season.

• For the 2013-14 basketball season, NC State agreed to release all Fridays except two and all Mondays from late September through early March to provide Gale Force opportunities to schedule events.

o Additionally, in future years, NC State has agreed to release any available October-December Friday nights by January of that same year, providing at least 10 months' notice of open Fridays for Gale Force to schedule attractive events.


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