"We are excited to bring the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament to these outstanding venues during this four-year rotation," said SEC Commissioner Mike Slive. "These venues have all played host to SEC or NCAA basketball tournaments in the past and have proven to be outstanding arenas for our student-athletes to participate in and for our fans to watch quality basketball."
The visit to Tampa will be the first-ever for the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament. The only other visit for the SEC Tournament to the state of Florida was in Orlando in 1990.
The Gaylord Entertainment Center hosted the SEC Tournament in 2001 and will host again on March 9-12, 2006. Vanderbilt's Memorial Gym hosted the SEC Tournament in 1984 and 1991.
The Georgia Dome has hosted the SEC Tournament six times previously and will host again on March 10-13, 2005, and will also host again in 2007 and 2008. The Georgia Dome played host to the highest-attended game in SEC Tournament history in the 1995 finals, when 30,057 fans watched Kentucky defeat Arkansas, 95-93, in overtime. The 1995 tournament is also the highest attended in SEC history, with 250,301 fans witnessing the four-day event.
The SEC will visit the New Orleans Arena for the first-time ever, but is no stranger to New Orleans. The Louisiana Superdome has played host to the 1996 and 2003 SEC Tournaments.
The future sites for the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament from 2005-12 are:
2005 (March 10-13) - Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
2006 (March 9-12) - Gaylord Entertainment Center, Nashville, Tenn.
2007 (March 8-11) - Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
2008 (March 13-16) - Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
2009 (March 12-15) - St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, Fla.
2010 (March 11-14) - Gaylord Entertainment Center, Nashville, Tenn.
2011 (March 10-13) - Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Ga.
2012 (March 8-11) - New Orleans Arena, New Orleans, La.