ATLANTA, Ga. -- 16 teams will take to the pool, but only one will leave with the title of National Champion as the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) will host the 2011 Men's National Collegiate Club Championship at Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) in Atlanta, Georgia on November 11-13.
Featuring champions from 15 of the league's divisions (Atlantic, Big Ten, Florida, Great Lakes, Great Plains, Mid-Atlantic, Missouri Valley, New England, New York, Northwest, Pacific Coast, Rocky Mountain, Sierra Pacific, Southeast, Texas), along the Southeast Division runner-up Emory University, the tournament features 30-games over three days to decide which collegiate club program is the best in the nation.
Competing division championship teams include: University of Southern California (Pacific Coast), Texas Tech University (Texas), University of Michigan (Big Ten), University of Florida (Florida), Arizona State University (Rocky Mountain), St. Louis University (Missouri Valley), Yale University (New England), University of Oregon (Northwest), University of California-Santa Cruz (Sierra Pacific), Villanova University (Mid-Atlantic), University of Illinois-Chicago (Great Lakes), University of North Carolina (Atlantic), Georgia Tech (Southeast/Host), Columbia University (New York) and Illinois State University (Great Plains). Emory makes the field at No. 16 due to Georgia Tech capturing the Southeast title and holding the No. 13 position in the tournament.
A complete schedule for the tournament is available by CLICKING HERE, and features links to directions to Georgia Tech's campus.
For fans that will be in the Greater Atlanta area over the weekend, ticket prices for the tournament are:
- General Admission: $25 Weekend Pass, $13 Day Pass
- Georgia Tech Students & Staff: $12 Weekend Pass, $5 Day Pass
In addition, for fans unable to attend the championship, the CWPA will once again offer live-streaming of all 30-games through the league's partnership with Stretch Internet. The cost for a weekend pass to watch the entire tournament is $25, while individual contests can be purchased at a cost $10/game. Fans can access the streaming page directly by CLICKING HERE, or by visiting the Multimedia Link on the front page of the CWPA website.
The championship will be held at the Campus Recreation Center (CRC), a 300,659 sq.ft. facility that was completed in August 2004. Located off of Ferst Drive on the West side of campus, this state of the art facility is a unique expansion of the existing swimming and diving venue (Georgia Tech Aquatics Center) that served as the site of all swimming, diving and synchronized swimming competition as well as the swimming portion of the modern pentathlon during the Centennial Olympic Games in the summer of 1996.
Along with hosting the '96 Olympics, the GTAC played host to the 2005 Men's and Women's Atlantic Coast Conference Swimming and Diving Championships and was the site of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Championships.
The 1,900-seat main stadium contains a competition pool and dive pool.
The competition pool is 50 meters by 10 lanes, with two movable bulkheads so that courses can be set up for 25 yards, 25 meters or 30 meters for water polo. It also features a movable floor which can be set from zero depth to seven feet, eight inches.
During the 1996 Olympic Games, the GTAC also included a temporary water polo pool with a seating capacity of 4,000. It was used for all competition except the finals, which were held in the main pool.
The original $21 million facility was funded entirely by the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games (ACOG). Construction on the facility began in July 1994 and was completed in time to host the VIIth Synchronized Swimming World Cup in August 1995. The newly-renovated enclosure of the GTAC is part of an over $45 million expansion to the CRC.
Other test events held at the facility included the Nations Bank Pan Pacific Swimming Championships, the IXth Diving World Cup and the IXth Water Polo World Cup, as the National Collegiate Club Championship will continue a tradition of world-class events at the CRC.
The CRC continues a tradition of standout athletic facilities for National Collegiate Club Championship competition as Southern Utah University (2010), University of Florida (2009, 2001), Ohio University (2008), University of Arizona (2007), Miami University of Ohio (2006), Williams College (2005), University of Notre Dame (2004), Texas A&M University (2003), California Polytechnic State University (2002) and University of Washington/King City Aquatic Center (2000) most recently hosted the tournament.
In the history of the championship, Northwestern University (1993), the United States Military Academy (1994), the University of Dayton (1995), the University of Michigan (1996, 1998, 2003), Dartmouth College (1997), California Polytechnic State University (1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2007), Michigan State University (2000, 2006, 2008), Grand Valley State University (2005) and the University of California-Los Angeles (2009, 2010) have claimed titles.
History could be made this year as UC-Santa Cruz, which captured the Division III National Collegiate Club Championship last year at Macalester College, can become the first program to win both the Division III and National Collegiate Club Championships.
In addition, several teams will have a chance to become the first East Coast program since Dartmouth College in 1997 to capture a National Collegiate Club Championship. Since the Big Green claimed the prize against the University of Colorado, only four squads east of Michigan have qualified for the title tilt (Pennsylvania State University - 1998, University of Richmond - 1999, Villanova University - 2001, Florida International University - 2009), with none leaving the championship site with the a tournament.