SONIC Signs on as Title Sponsor of All-College Basketball Classic
Oklahoma faces UTEP and Oklahoma State takes on La Salle in Doubleheader on ESPN2 HD
OKLAHOMA CITY – ESPN Regional Television announced today that SONIC, America’s Drive-In, has signed a multiyear agreement for the title sponsorship of what will now be known as the SONIC All-College Basketball Classic.
The 74th annual Classic, set for Monday, Dec. 21, will feature a doubleheader on ESPN2 HD, including UTEP vs. Oklahoma at 5:30 p.m. CT and La Salle vs. Oklahoma State at 8 p.m. CT at Ford Center.
“We are pleased to partner with SONIC and to have a leading QSR brand associated with this event,” said Pete Derzis, senior vice president and general manager of ESPN Regional Television. “The partnership will greatly enhance our marketing efforts both regionally and nationally as we continue to develop the SONIC All-College Basketball Classic as a first-class experience for the fans as well as the teams, coaches and their staffs.”
“Only one city and one state can boast holding the nation’s oldest basketball tournament,” said Tim Brassfield, Executive Director, Oklahoma City All Sports Association. “The All Sports is proud to align with a local corporate partner in SONIC, as well as ESPN, to present this event to Oklahoma City and the nation for the 74th time.”
As the world’s oldest basketball tournament, the SONIC All-College Basketball Classic has been an Oklahoma staple for generations and is older than the NCAA, NIT, NAIA and NBA. The All-College Classic was created in 1936 and has since grown into one of Oklahoma City’s most popular events.
Through the years, many greats such as Pete Maravich, Bill Russell, Elgin Baylor, Karl Malone, Robert Parrish, Nate Thurmond and Wayman Tisdale have played in this event.
Tickets for the SONIC All-College Basketball Classic will go on sale in late October and will be available through the Ford Center Box Office, Ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000.
Additional information about the SONIC All-College Basketball Classic can be found at the Oklahoma City All Sports Association site: http://www.okcallsports.org/.
About SONIC Drive-In
SONIC, America’s Drive-In (NASDAQ/NM: SONC) started as a hamburger and root beer stand in 1953 in Shawnee, Okla., called Top Hat Drive-In, and then changed its name to SONIC in 1959. The first drive-in to adopt the SONIC name is still serving customers in Stillwater, Okla. As the nation’s largest chain of drive-in restaurants, SONIC has more than 3,500 drive-ins coast to coast. More than a million customers eat at SONIC every day; and with more drink combinations than any other quick-service restaurant – more than 168,000 – SONIC is Your Ultimate Drink Stop®. For more information about Sonic Corp. and its subsidiaries, visit SONIC at www.sonicdrivein.com. Through a new program, Limeades for Learning, SONIC will donate more than half a million dollars to public school classrooms in local communities across the country. Visit www.limeadesforlearning.com to learn more about SONIC’s commitment to education.
ESPN Regional Television/Event Ownership
The nation’s largest syndicator of collegiate sports programming, ESPN Regional Television (ERT) annually produces more than 1,000 telecasts of sporting events. Programming includes football, basketball, NCAA events, golf and NHRA events accounting for more than 2,200 live and/or original hours of programming. In addition to event ownership, ERT is the production headquarters for ESPNU, the 24-hour college sports network; syndication rights-holder and producer of national, regional and local shows for college conferences (e.g. – SEC, BIG EAST, Big 12, Mid-American, Sun Belt, WAC).
ESPN Regional Television markets and/or owns several sporting events, including collegiate football events: the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl (Fort Worth, Texas); MAACO Bowl Las Vegas; New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Papajohns.com Bowl (Birmingham, Ala.); Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); St. Petersburg Bowl; the MEAC/SWAC Challenge presented by Disney (Orlando, Fla.); and The Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards; collegiate basketball events: the 76 Classic (Anaheim, Calif.); Charleston Classic (S.C.); ESPNU Road to the Championship (Women; San Antonio); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Old Spice Classic (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); O’Reilly Auto Parts Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan); SEC/BIG EAST Invitational; SONIC All-College Classic (Oklahoma City) and BracketBusters; as well as the ESPN National Golf Challenge presented by Callaway.
For more information, visit ESPNPlus.com.