By Ryan Mayer

The memories of Muhammad Ali and his greatness both within the ring and outside of it have flowed since the news of his passing in the early morning hours Saturday. His legend is built equally on the dominance that he displayed in sport and the impact that he had on his communities and the United States culture at large. In his years since retiring from the sport, Ali has been active on the behalf of many different organizations and community efforts including, apparently, Phoenix’s bid for the right to host the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four.

As a resident of the Scottsdale area, Ali wrote to Ron Wellman, the chair of the Division-I men’s basketball committee endorsing Phoenix as a host city for the NCAA’s marquee basketball event. The Final Four Phoenix twitter account shared the letter Saturday.

This tweet was backed up further by David Worlock, the NCAA’s Director of Media Coordination shortly thereafter.

David’s correct, they couldn’t say no. Phoenix will host the 2017 Final Four on April 1st and 3rd of that year at University of Phoenix Stadium. Active on behalf of his community throughout his entire life, this is just one more example of Ali’s greatness.

Ryan Mayer is an Associate Producer for CBS Local Sports. Ryan lives in NY but comes from Philly and life as a Philly sports fan has made him cynical. Anywhere sports are being discussed, that’s where you’ll find him.

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