The Men’s Final Four college basketball championship has never been hosted by Arizona and only hosted once on the west coast. I joined agency LaneTerralever and various organization and officials to make a statewide effort to bid for the Final Four. Hinging on the growing sports culture in Arizona and recent success with the AZ2016 Stadium Box, this bid had a fighting chance despite the tendency for the state to be overlooked as a destination.
An effort of this magnitude called for a book that conveys the greatness of the game and Arizona as a destination. I came together with Peter Schaer and Gary Serviss of LaneTerralever, Andrew Bagnato and Kristen Pflipsen of Bagnato+Pflipsen on concepts. Talking through ideas it was clear that native culture, historical references and weather were key factors for the bid. The intersection of these elements was found in the tagline, ‘Your Next Shining Moment’. Playing on the history of Shining Moments from the Final Four and the Valley of the Sun; this was embodied with a graphic that simultaneously represents an overhead view of a basketball hoop, a sunset and Native American culture. The graphic is also joined with a logo that jointly represents the term ‘PHX’ for the city of Phoenix while revealing a ‘4’ inside the ‘H’.
The concept is brought to life with various textures including actual basketball rubber binding, maple wood back cover that recreates an open court with engraved graphics and an acrylic backboard with graphic elements ghosted in translucent printing. The transparent portions of the cover fully reveal an awe-inspiring Arizona desert sunset. The interior features binder hardware and tabbed sections for easy maneuverability. Each section divider page features gorgeous views of Arizona with the sun graphic incorporated in the backdrop. When these divider pages are flipped, various textures that simultaneously represent Native culture and basketball brackets are seen. Along with the textures there are playful blurbs that correlate Arizona to a ‘Shining Moment’.
Arizona recently was selected for hosting the 2017 Final Four game, adding to my dream of bringing sports to the cities and fans that deserve it.