DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The national spotlight is shining brightly on Dayton as March Madness unfolds.
But for new City Manager Warren Price, it’s his first time at center court.
2 NEWS’ Beairshelle Edmé sat down with Price to talk about the impact March Madness has on the Gem City.
Price beams with excitement when talking about hosting the games in Dayton.
He’s clear where his affiliation lies, Dayton.
For the 1st time in nearly 30 years, a home team will play on its home court for the First Four.
It’s big for the Dayton Flyers.
It’s just as big for the city of Dayton, hosting the NCAA games.
Price holds his position as a Flyer fan in high regard, just as he does with being City Manager.
The new city official hopes to welcome all the opportunities that comes with the hometown advantage.
“It’s a busy time for us. We’re naturally concerned about everybody having a good time, but also we’re concerned about safety and making sure it’s a safe time for everybody,” Price detailed.
He is confident the security partnership between UD and Dayton Police will be a slam dunk.
He’s just as assured that First Four will be a major assist for city economics.
Last year, the city estimates $4.5 million of revenue came to the city during March Madness.
And that’s not all.
“We also probably get anywhere between $70, $80 or more million dollars worth of national advertising and marketing benefits from our naming being out there in the national media,” he explained.
It’s an investment in this community, and 2 NEWS asked why Price thinks it’s an evolving one.
“I think number one reason that we are such a big part of the First Four is the support of this community and that means city’s other than Dayton as well,” Price explained when asked what makes the partnership between Dayton and NCAA work. “I mean, all the region has comes together, all the municipalities surrounding us have offered their support and they’re working hard to make it a success too and I think that community support is what keeps Dayton at the forefront of the NCAA March Madness.”
But the question on the mind of most Daytonians is who is Warren Price rooting for?
After several chuckle, Price got to the point, ‘Well, I mean, on Wednesday we’re rooting the Flyers as they take on Boise State, naturally. So it’s an exciting thing and I’ll actually get a chance to be at the game.”
And no matter the outcome, Price says Dayton is not the underdog but the buzz beater winner, much like the Flyers.