No fewer than 14 teams, 39 athletes and 15 coaches who advanced to the women's Sweet 16 have USA Basketball ties. Who are they and how are they connected?
Since launching its Hoops for Troops program in 2006, USA Basketball teams have connected with thousands of American military members and their families through a comprehensive series of activities during the USA Men’s and Women’s National Teams training and exhibition schedules over the past 10 years.
The relationship conintued in 2016 when USA Basketball announced a partnership with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) to host more than 350 TAPS youth participants and their families at USA Men's and Women's National Team events in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Chicago, Bridgeport and Houston during the 2016 USA Basketball Showcase presented by Verizon.
On Aug. 18, 2014, the Men's National Team visited West Point. The team toured the U.S. Military Academy, visited the West Point Cemetery, dined with cadets in the mess hall and then held a practice at Chritl Arena that was televised live on ESPN2.
On Sept. 9, 2014, the USA Basketball Women’s National Team’s conducted a three-day training camp at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. During their time in Annapolis, the squad was visited by Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, observed 4,000 midshipmen get into noon formation and march into the chow hall for lunch, ate lunch and chatted with the midshipmen, and held a pair of clinics in the evening for local youths at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County and one at the U.S. Naval Academy for children of military parents.
In 2013, USA Basketball gave tickets to members of the military from Nellis Air Force Base for the USA Basketball Showcase and one of the airmen wowed the crowd during a break in the action with his windmill dunk - wearing fatigues and boots!
The activities in 2012 included basketball clinics, special appearances, and access to USA Basketball exhibition games. They were conducted in partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense, Let’s Move, an initiative to solve the problem of childhood obesity in a generation, and Joining Forces, an initiative to support and honor America’s service members and their families. The activities were also a significant part of the World Basketball Festival, which was being run in partnership with NIKE, Inc. and its leading basketball brands – Converse, Jordan Brand and Nike Basketball – in Washington, D.C., July 13 – 16.
Launched in 2006, Hoops for Troops is the global social responsibility program for USA Basketball that works to provide support for the United States military personnel and their families through programs, events and partnerships. Throughout the 2014 USA Basketball Men's and Women's National Team training camps, USA Basketball has another amazing summer planned for our troops and their families. If you're not able to get a front-row seat to the festivities, you'll be able to catch a glimpse of everything USA Basketball will do through Hoops for Troops right here.