Pac-12 Announces California – Yale Matchup for 2018 Pac-12 China Game
SHANGHAI – The Pac-12 announced today that the University of California, Berkeley and Yale University will meet in 2018 in the fourth edition of the Pac-12 China Game presented by Alibaba Group, tipping off the 2018-2019 men’s college basketball season. Longtime Pac-12 partner Federation of University Sports of China (FUSC), which operates under China’s Ministry of Education, will serve as the co-host for the game. The Pac-12 China Game is the flagship event of Pac-12 Global, designed to grow the global popularity of Pac-12 athletic programs and universities, fostering cultural exchange through sport, and creating unique educational experiences for Pac-12 student-athletes.
“The Pac-12 is thrilled to bring another exciting matchup to Chinese fans in 2018 with two fantastic schools in the University of California, Berkeley and Yale,” said Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott. “We are particularly pleased that this game will once again be presented by Alibaba whose own Joe Tsai is an esteemed alumni of Yale and co-hosted by the Federation of University Sports of China, two incredibly committed partners. The 2018 Pac-12 China Game will once again be an incredible educational experience for student-athletes and continue to grow the popularity of the Pac-12 and college sports in China.”
“We are excited to welcome these two iconic schools to China for what will be a truly fantastic match-up, as well as a great international learning experience for the student-athletes,” said Alibaba Group executive vice chairman and co-founder Joe Tsai, a former lacrosse student-athlete and alumnus of both Yale undergraduate and law school. “The Pac-12 China Game exemplifies our shared vision that sports is an integral part of a world-class education. We are honored that these two schools have chosen China to demonstrate their commitment to this vision.”
The announcement comes a week prior to Tsai receiving the prestigious George H.W. Bush ’48 Lifetime of Leadership Award from the Yale Athletic Department, an honor bestowed to those who have made significant contributions to satisfying the global needs for leadership in public service, commerce, the arts and media, science and technology, government or education.
“FUSC and Pac-12 have together achieved great success during the initial six years of our strategic partnership” said FUSC Senior Vice President & Secretary General Xue Yanqing. “With the incredible growth and popularity of the first three editions of the Pac-12 China Game, we are very excited to co-host this thrilling game again in 2018, which will showcase the student-athletes of these two fantastic schools and further the exchanges among the youth in both countries.”
The announcement was made before the tipoff of the 2017 UCLA and Georgia Tech China Game at Baoshan Arena in Shanghai, and just two days after another successful edition of the China-U.S. University Sports and Education Summit at Shanghai Jiao Tong University. The summit is an annual staple of the Pac-12 China Game and brings together university students, administrators, coaches, sports industry experts, and business and political leadership from China and the U.S. Just last month, the Pac-
12 and Alibaba announced an expansion and extension of their China Game partnership, including Alibaba’s continued sponsorship of the China Game through 2020 along with distribution of Pac-12 content in China across both linear and digital platforms through 2024.
“We're thrilled to be able to tip off our season representing the University of California and the Pac-12 in China next year,” said California Head Coach Wyking Jones. “We have a unique opportunity to provide our student-athletes an enriching cultural experience on an international stage. Cal is a global brand, and our players will get a special opportunity to witness that firsthand. As someone who played abroad myself, I'm excited to share in this incredible experience with our basketball family.”
“The opportunity for our students-athletes to engage themselves into another culture while at the same time participating in a challenging basketball contest is truly unique,” said James Jones, Head Coach of Yale. “Our players are excited, and I’m happy that they will have this once in a lifetime experience which will create ever-lasting positive memories.”
Saturday’s 2017 Pac-12 China Game between UCLA and Georgia Tech will be televised live in the United States on ESPN at 8:30 p.m. PT/11:30 p.m. ET on Friday and streamed live on Youku Sports.