WALNUT CREEK, Calif. – Commissioner Larry Scott and the Pac-12 Conference announced today three summer tours to China for Pac-12 student-athletes and coaches as part of its long-term Globalization Initiative. Started in 2011, the Pac-12 Globalization Initiative was designed to proactively promote the member universities through student-athlete exchanges and sport.
This August, the Arizona State men’s basketball team and the California women’s basketball team will visit China to compete against university and professional teams and participate in cultural exchange and goodwill activities with their peer student-athletes.
"We try to be innovative and forward thinking in everything we do with Cal Women's Basketball, and our foreign tour to China represents a wonderful opportunity to take our team to one of the emerging hotbeds when it comes to basketball,” Cal head coach Lindsay Gottlieb said. “Overseas trips allow for a unique cultural experience for our student-athletes as well as team bonding and high level competition. We are excited to represent the Pac-12 and it's unique globalization mindset on this trip. We are also honored to connect to Cal alumni and have amazing life experiences through basketball."
The Pac-12 partnered with Hupu Sports Media, a top-tier Chinese sports marketing company, to help arrange and publicize the games in Zhaoqing and Nanning for the ASU tour. For the Cal tour of Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, the Conference partnered with the Liaoning and Bayi Chinese professional women's basketball clubs to arrange the games.
Also in August, the Pac-12 will send a delegation of current and former Pac-12 men’s basketball coaches – Oregon State head coach Craig Robinson, former University of Oregon coach Ernie Kent, and Cal's associate head coach Travis DeCuire – to lead coaching clinics for more than 150 coaches from all over China.
Coaching clinics are the next step in the Pac-12’s partnership with the Federation of University Sports of China (FUSC), which hosted the Pac-12’s inaugural summer tour with UCLA men’s basketball, arranged this year’s games against Chinese university teams, and participated in the U.S.-China Symposium on Collegiate Sports Development in March in Las Vegas at the 2013 Pac-12 Men’s Basketball Tournament.
Earlier this summer in June, a Pac-12 women’s volleyball all-star team led by USC head coach Mick Haley played six matches in Shanghai and Huaian City against professional teams and participated in cultural and sightseeing activities throughout China.
“These tours can be transformative moments for our student-athletes,” said Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott. “For many of the students, this is their first international trip and they will return to their universities with meaningful life experiences of visiting another country and learning more about another culture.”
In addition to the three basketball games, the Golden Bears and Arizona State's men's team will have the opportunity to experience Chinese culture, visit historic landmarks and engage with their Chinese counterparts in official ceremonies and off the court activities.
The tours offer Pac-12 universities a new way to support their important globalization strategies currently in place in countries like China.
“In the long run, the Pac-12 Globalization Initiative can become a great vehicle to augment our member institutions’ existing efforts to build their brands and expand opportunities in China,” concluded Scott.
DETAILS OF UPCOMING TOURS Aug 1 - 9 – Coaches clinics in Shanghai at Shanghai Jiaotong University Aug 9 - 19 – ASU Men’s Basketball · Aug 12: ASU vs. Tsinghua University in Beijing · Aug 16: ASU vs. Fujian SBS (Chinese CBA pro team) in Zhaoqing · Aug 18: ASU vs. Fujian SBS (Chinese CBA pro team) in Nanning
Aug 17 - 26 – Cal Women’s Basketball · Aug 19: Cal vs. Liaoning (Chinese WCBA pro team) in Beijing · Aug 20: Cal vs. Bayi (Chinese WCBA pro team) in Beijing · Aug 23: Cal vs. Shanghai Jiaotong University in Shanghai (to be confirmed)