Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment Announces the Creation of the Jamaica Classic Pre-Season College Basketball Tournament

Oct 18th 2017

NEW YORK (October 18, 2017) - Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment (VWSE), the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and SMG/Montego Bay Convention Centre are proud to announce the creation of the Jamaica Classic, an annual pre-season college basketball tournament, to be held in Montego Bay, Jamaica.

The inaugural Jamaica Classic, the newest NCAA basketball MTE tournament for college teams and their fans, will be held November 17-19, 2017, in one of the most iconic destinations in the Caribbean.


 “We are extremely excited to partner with the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and the SMG Montego Bay Convention Centre in presenting the Inaugural Jamaica Classic,” said Mike Palisi, Executive Vice President of VWSE. “Consistent with our objective to create innovative platforms for college programs, we look to establish the Jamaica Classic as a premier pre-season college basketball destination for years to come.”

Seven (7) teams have agreed to participate in the inaugural season which will include Florida State University, Colorado State University, Fordham University, Tulane University, University of Hartford, Miami University and LIU Brooklyn. Twelve (12) tournament games will be held on select campus sites and seven (7) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Jamaica. Five (5) of the games played in the Montego Bay Convention Centre will be televised live on CBS Sports Network.


Donnie Dawson, Jamaica’s Acting Director of Tourism is very excited about the partnership: “The Jamaica Tourist Board is always happy to be part of something phenomenal that shines the spotlight on our multifaceted destination. When we consider that basketball is among the top three most popular sports in the United States, the Jamaica Classic basketball tournament is an excellent event to promote the island to an enthusiastic market segment.”


“It is going to be epic,” said Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, who added “the Jamaica Classic is part of the government’s thrust to strengthen the island’s reputation as a sports country.”


 “We are looking forward in welcoming and hosting all the representatives from Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment and the teams participating in the Jamaica Classic basketball competition. This event is a first of its kind for Jamaica and we are happy that we are able to partner and assist in this historic initiative and that the SMG/Montego Bay Convention Centre (SMG/MBCC) is the host venue. We encourage our visitors to explore all the attractions that Montego Bay has to offer; the warmth, beauty and friendly atmosphere which is also fully embodied at the SMG/MBCC. This is an exciting event and we are pulling out all the stops to ensure execution at the highest level,” said Dittie Guise, General Manager, SMG/Montego Bay Convention Centre.

For additional information or details pertaining to the purchase of tournament tickets and hotel packages in Montego Bay please reference

About Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment

Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment LLC (VWSE), a wholly owned subsidiary of Van Wagner Group LLC, is one of the preeminent sports marketing and media sales organizations in the world. It is an acknowledged innovator in property consulting and branding solutions and a global leader in naming rights, team and venue services, high-impact visible TV signage throughout the MLB, NBA, NCAA, MLS, and internationally in soccer, advertising and sponsorships sales, premium ticketing, technology design and integration, and in-venue content production. VWSE works with more than 300 professional and college teams worldwide. VWSE assists teams, organizations and properties in creating and selling advertising; sponsorships; and media that maximize revenue potential, and helps clients develop effective and powerful customized brand campaigns.


About Jamaica Tourist Board

The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), founded in 1955, is Jamaica’s national tourism agency based in the capital city of Kingston. TripAdvisor® ranked Jamaica #12 Best Destination in the World in 2017 and top three island in the world in 2016.  The JTB was declared the Caribbean’s Leading Tourist Board by the World Travel Awards (WTA) from 2006 to 2016. In 2016, Jamaica earned the WTA’s vote for the Caribbean’s Leading Destination and the Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Destination for the tenth consecutive year. Additionally, Ocho Rios was named the Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Port; Sangster International Airport was voted the Caribbean’s Leading Airport; Club Mobay was named the Caribbean’s Leading Airport Lounge; Dolphin Cove was voted the Caribbean’s Leading Adventure Tourist Attraction; the Montego Bay Convention Center was named the Caribbean’s Leading Meeting & Conventions Center; and GO! Jamaica Travel was named the Caribbean’s Leading Tour Operator. 


JTB offices are located in Kingston, Montego Bay, Miami, Toronto and London. Representative offices are located in Berlin, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam and Mumbai. For details on upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica go to the JTB’s Web site at or call the Jamaica Tourist Board at 1-800-JAMAICA (1-800-526-2422).  Follow the JTB on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube. View the JTB blog at




Media Contacts:

VWSE: Mike Palisi – or (212) 699-8627 

SMG/Montego Bay Convention Centre: Dittie Guise - or (876) 622-9330 Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport: Oliver Watt – or (876) 564-9198