Larry Scott and Zhang Dazhong comment on 2016 Pac-12 China game between Stanford and Harvard
SHANGHAI, China — Ready for round two?
On the eve of the 2015 Pac-12 China Game between the Washington and Texas men’s basketball teams, the Pac-12 Conference and presenting sponsor Alibaba Group announced Stanford and Harvard will compete in next year's Pac-12 China Game on Nov. 12, 2016 in Shanghai. The announcement was made by Alibaba Sports Group Chief Executive Officer Zhang Dazhong during Friday’s China-U.S. University Sports and Education Summit, hosted by the Pac-12 Conference and the Federation of University Sports of China at Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
“We would like to introduce the best game in the world to China,” Zhang said via translator, “and we would like to showcase the best of China to the rest of the world.”
The intersection of academics and athletics was the main focus of Friday’s Summit, which also included appearances from Bill Walton and Yao Ming, and a host of Pac-12 university delegates and local Chinese officials.
Given the high academic standards and brand names attached to Stanford and Harvard, Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott is hoping to further the conference’s Globalization Initiative by emphasizing the value of a student-athlete model in countries where it isn’t widely practiced.
“It’s our objective every year to have a Pac-12 team play against another team from outside the Pac-12 that represents the best in academics with very high-level athletics as well,” Scott said. “Both Stanford and Harvard have deep connections in China.”