The Ottumwa Courier

AP Sports

April 4, 2014

Final Four floor originated in tiny Michigan town

AMASA, Mich. (AP) — Workers in a tiny Michigan town toiled to produce the hardwood floor on which Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky and Wisconsin will try to produce their shining moment.

The floor being used for the Final Four games on Saturday and the national championship game on Monday, all in in Arlington, Texas, was put together in Amasa, Mich. — a 280-person community in Iron County and a key manufacturing spot for Salt Lake City-based Connor Sport Court International.

Connor, which has been manufacturing the floors for the Final Four for nearly a decade, also makes 700 courts per year for the NBA, schools, gyms and colleges.

The wood for this year's court — "Grade 1 Maple" — came from the U.P., by way of Timber Products Co. It was gathered around the time most college basketball teams started practice this season.

It takes at least 30 trees to manufacture the floor. The planks are brought to the Connor plant in Amasa, where much of the work is done by hand.

The floor consists of 350 4-by-7-foot panels. The weight of the court is 62,300 pounds.

When the games are over, the floors often are sold to the winning schools to cut up and share with alumni and players. Sometimes a piece makes its way back to Timber Products' Michigan plant, completing the cycle.

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