POSTED: July 7th 2017

Olympics: NCAA College sports gets behind the LA 2024 bid

UCLA is projected to host the Olympic Village if LA wins the 2024 Games and has produced a number of Olympic and Paralympic athletes © Bigstock
UCLA is projected to host the Olympic Village if LA wins the 2024 Games and has produced a number of Olympic and Paralympic athletes © Bigstock

LAURA WALDEN (USA) / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced its support for the Los Angeles 2024 bid for the summer Olympics and Paralympics. College sports are the grassroots for Olympic teams with nearly 1 in 10 of the Rio 2016 athletes getting training at colleges and universities in the USA.

Los Angeles and Paris are in the race for the 2024 Games and the IOC is set to meet next week about the possible awarding of the 2028 Games as well.

Consequently with UCLA and USC chosen as hosts for the Olympic Village and Olympic media, they will also provide training facilities, and serve as the aquatics, badminton, judo and wrestling competition venues.

NCAA President Mark Emmert noted that the Association's formal support of the bid is rooted in its core value of providing opportunities for student-athletes.

Emmert added, "Many Olympians first get their start training and competing at NCAA colleges and universities, and I am thrilled to add our organization's support to this athlete-led bid for the 2024 Games. Our member campuses are very excited to be a part of this world-class event as well, as the Los Angeles games will utilize the many outstanding facilities of our colleges and universities in the region for training and competition.

"Overall, the LA Games will showcase everything that is great about American sports and college sports in particular."

LA 2024's focus is on athletes and giving Olympians and Paralympians a great Games experience has been idealized by engaging more than 500 athletes at town hall forums across the nation in order to get their perspective.

"LA 2024 is grateful for the NCAA's support," said Janet Evans, four-time Olympic champion, LA 2024 Vice Chair and Director of Athlete Relations. "As a former NCAA student-athlete, I know the impact and importance of college competition to Olympic competition. The unforgettable performances by NCAA student-athletes have and will continue to inspire the next generation and unite the world in celebration. 

"As an athlete-led bid, we're committed to placing athletes at the center of all of our activities and college athletics are crucial to that effort. LA's universities will provide an unparalleled Athlete Village experience and state-of-the-art competition venues. With no new permanent venues to build, LA 2024 is able to focus on meeting and exceeding athletes' needs and providing a spectacular Games experience for everyone."

**LAURA WALDEN has over twenty-six years of experience in the Olympic Movement, formerly at the European Olympic Committees with SportEurope under former IOC President Dr. Jacques Rogge and IOC Member Mario Pescante. She worked with the Rome 2004 and Turin 2006 Olympic bids and also managed PR & media for Dr. Jacques Rogge during his campaign for the presidency.

Keywords · LA 2024 · Olympics

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