Schedule finalized for 2016 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project
Pitt to face SMU and Michigan to meet Marquette in Championship Round semifinals at Madison Square Garden
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 13, 2016
Contact: Ray Cella 609.921.1300 (email@example.com)
The match-ups are set for the 22nd annual 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project (@2KClassic), which returns to Madison Square Garden this coming November.
2016 NCAA participants Michigan and Pittsburgh, along with Marquette and SMU highlight the field for the 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project, which culminates with the Championship Rounds at Madison Square Garden, Nov. 17-18.
Tickets for the 2K Classic Championship Rounds presented by Continental Tire are on sale and may be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 866-448-7849 or through Ticketmaster.com.
In the Championship Rounds, Pittsburgh will take on SMU in the first semifinal, followed by Michigan squaring off with Marquette on Thursday, Nov. 17. The consolation and championship games will then take place on Friday, Nov. 18. All four games of the Championship Rounds will be televised on ESPN networks.
Michigan, Pittsburgh, Marquette, and SMU combined for an 89-43 record in 2015-16 and have made 94 NCAA Tournament appearances, including 12 Final Fours. These four teams will be joined by IUPUI, Eastern Michigan, Gardner-Webb, and Howard to complete the field.
In addition to their games at The Garden, Michigan, Pittsburgh, Marquette, and SMU will host a pair of games on campus, beginning Nov. 11. IUPUI will host Eastern Michigan, Gardner-Webb, and Howard in the Subregional Round of the 2K Classic, Nov. 18-19, in Indianapolis, Ind.
Additional television information will be announced at a later date.
—- CHAMPIONSHIP ROUNDS —-
Madison Square Garden – New York, N.Y.
November 17 – 7:00 p.m. (ET)
Pittsburgh vs. SMU (ESPN2)
Michigan vs. Marquette (ESPN2)
Madison Square Garden – New York, N.Y.
November 18 – 4:30 p.m. (ET)
Consolation Game (ESPN2)
Championship Game (ESPN2)
—- REGIONAL ROUNDS —-
Ann Arbor Regional Rounds
Crisler Center – Ann Arbor, Mich.
Howard at Michigan
IUPUI at Michigan
Pittsburgh Regional Rounds
Petersen Events Center – Pittsburgh, Pa.
Eastern Michigan at Pittsburgh
Gardner-Webb at Pittsburgh
Milwaukee Regional Rounds
BMO Harris Bradley Center- Milwaukee, Wis.
Howard at Marquette
IUPUI at Marquette
Dallas Regional Rounds
Moody Coliseum – Dallas, Texas
Gardner-Webb at SMU
Eastern Michigan at SMU
—- SUBREGIONAL ROUNDS —-
Indianapolis Subregional Rounds
Indiana Farmers Coliseum – Indianapolis, Ind.
Gardner-Webb vs. Eastern Michigan
Howard vs. IUPUI
Subregional Consolation Game
Subregional Championship Game
Michigan (Head Coach: John Beilein, Big Ten Conference) – In the nine years under the guidance of head coach John Beilein, U-M has won 189 games and gone to six NCAA Tournaments, including the 2013 national title game…Beilein, who ranks among college basketball’s top active coaches with 740 career wins, has recorded 20 20-win seasons in his career, including six at U-M…this season he returns all five starters and 10 experienced and highly-talented players highlighted by senior guards Derrick Walton, Jr., and Zak Irvin, and redshirt-junior swingman Duncan Robinson…Michigan has made 27 NCAA Tournament appearances reaching the Final Four seven times…the Wolverines last participated 2K Classic in 2008, falling to Duke in the championship game.
Pittsburgh (Head Coach: Kevin Stallings, Atlantic Coast Conference) – Kevin Stallings takes over at Pitt after spending the previous 17 seasons at Vanderbilt…he has amassed a 455-283 record with 16 postseason appearances in 23 seasons as a head coach…Stallings inherits a team that has been to the NCAA Tournament 13 of the past 15 seasons (including 2016) and has been to the postseason each of the past 16 years…the Panthers return a loaded roster in 2016-17, led by the All-ACC honorees Michael Young and Jamel Artis…Pittsburgh has been to 26 NCAA Tournaments, including one trip to the Final Four…the Panthers have played in two previous 2K Classics (2003, 2010) and are a perfect 5-0 in those games.
Marquette (Head Coach: Steve Wojciechowski, Big East Conference) – Marquette has made great strides in two years under head coach Steve Wojciechowski as the Golden Eagles posted 20 wins in 2015-16 – a seven-win improvement from the previous season…Marquette had no seniors in the regular rotation this past season and four starters return this season, including center Luke Fischer and guard Jajuan Johnson…Marquette has been to 31 NCAA Tournaments and three Final Fours…the Golden Eagles have been to three previous 2K Classics (1995, 2002, 2003) and own a 2-1 record.
SMU (Head Coach: Tim Jankovich, American Athletic Conference) – Tim Jankovich takes over at SMU after serving four seasons as associate head coach….in that time, the Mustangs turned into a force in college basketball, including earning their first league title in over 20 years in 2014-15…in 2015-16, the Mustangs were the last unbeaten team in the country, starting the season 18-0…Jankovich, who was head coach at Illinois State prior to heading to Dallas, inherits a lineup that will be led by Sterling Brown, Ben Moore, Shake Milton and Jarrey Foster…SMU has been to 11 NCAA Tournaments and one Final Four.
IUPUI (Head Coach: Jason Gardner, The Summit League) – In two short seasons, head coach Jason Gardner has the Jaguars on the right track…in his first season, IUPUI more than tripled its Division I win total of the previous season by posting 10 wins…this past year’s edition surpassed that with 13 victories..IUPUI leading scorers Darell Combs and Matt O’Leary return and transfers Ron Patterson and Kellon Thomas will be heavily counted upon…IUPUI has been to one NCAA Tournament…the Jaguars last played in the 2K Classic in 2008.
Eastern Michigan (Head Coach: Rob Murphy, Mid-American Conference) – Head coach Rob Murphy guided the Eagles to 61 wins in the last three campaigns after inheriting a program that won nine games prior to his 2011-12 arrival…four starters return from last season…leading the pack are James Thompson IV and Raven Lee…the Eagles have been to four NCAA Tournaments…this will mark EMU’s first appearance in the 2K Classic.
Gardner-Webb (Head Coach: Tim Craft, Big South Conference) – Tim Craft is in his fourth season at Gardner-Webb and has led the Runnin’ Bulldogs to 55 wins in that span, including 20 in 2014-15…senior Tyrell Nelson will lead nine returning letterwinners this season…Gardner-Webb played in the 2007 2K Classic, upsetting No. 20 Kentucky in Lexington.
Howard (Head Coach: Kevin Nickelberry, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – Kevin Nickelberry has turned around a program that ranked near the bottom of Division I…in six seasons, Nickelberry has led Howard to three double-digit win campaigns, something not accomplished in 13 seasons…this year’s team will be led by James Daniel III (the nation’s leading scorer in 2015-16) and Damon Collins…the Bison have been to two NCAA Tournaments…this will be Howard’s first 2K Classic appearance.
In the 2015 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project, Grayson Allen set a tournament record by scoring 62 points in the Championship Rounds presented by Continental Tire to lead then-No. 5 Duke to the title. Allen, who was named MVP, had 30 points in a 79-71 semifinal win over VCU and followed that with 32 points in an 86-84 win over Georgetown in the championship game.
Wounded Warrior Project is the beneficiary of the 2K Classic. The mission of Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) is to honor and empower wounded warriors. WWP’s purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla.
The 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project is produced by the Gazelle Group of Princeton, N.J. The Gazelle Group is a sports marketing firm, specializing in event production and management, client representation, and sponsorship consulting. Gazelle produces numerous nationally-recognized events, such as the Legends Classic, the Gotham Classic, and the College Basketball Invitational. For more information on the Gazelle Group, please visit gazellegroup.com.
The Northeast Conference (NEC) is the sponsoring conference of the 2K Classic. Entering its 36th season, the NEC is a NCAA Division I collegiate athletic association consisting of 10 institutions of higher learning located throughout six states. For more information on the NEC, visit the official website at www.northeastconference.org or follow on Twitter @NECsports.
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