NEWARK, N.J. (1010 WINS) — Long plagued by street gangs and the perception of being a dangerous city, the spotlight will be on Newark as it plays host to the NCAA tournament at the end of the week.

Thousands of people will be descending on New Jersey’s largest city and the Prudential Center for the NCAA East Regional Finals.

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“We’re going to make sure that we have cops deployed at the places and the locations where they need to be. We’re going to provide the safe environment for everybody who’s coming into the city,” Police Director Garry McCarthy told reporters including 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg.

1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg with more on Newark’s preparations

McCarthy said there will be additional police officers in and around hotels and nightclubs. Officials want to ensure hoops fans that they will be safe.

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Despite the crisis in Libya, the FBI’s Michael Ward said there is no specific threat on the city or the arena. He added, however, that a joint terrorism task force would be on guard.

“There’s certainly nothing going on there that should dissuade people from coming to Newark or influence their decision whether or not to attend the basketball games,” Ward said.

So for those attending the games, it will be North Carolina, Marquette, Ohio State, Kentucky and plenty of Newark’s finest.