A few interesting early season event nuggets for this December Thursday. Follow me after the jump...
In venue news, yesterday morning, I found an item from the Gazelle Group's always helpful Ray Cella in my inbox, a message which happened to be a press release announcing yet another relocation of the Legends Classic. This season, the event moved back to the New York metro area, setting up shop at the Izod Center at the Meadowlands after a two-year stint down in Atlantic City. But in 2012, the Legends Classic jumps into the city itself, as it's scheduled for Monday and Tuesday, November 19th and 20th at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn. That venue has already lined up a formidable slate of early season events, as it will be the home of the new Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, which will be broadcast by Turner and managed by Blue Ridge Sports & Entertainment, as well as the Barclays Classic doubleheader.
While on the Gazelle Group website grabbing the press release link, I noticed they've established a new exempt tournament for next season, the Gotham Classic, which will provide a nice twist on the recent glut of five-team round-robin events. Namely, the Classic will culminate with a showcase game between the top two teams at Madison Square Garden. Plus, this event will serve as a nice addition to the holiday calendar, as it's slated to take place between December 8th and 22nd.
On the team side of things, Andy Katz's 3-Point Shot from Wednesday indicates that the four host schools for the Hall of Fame Tip-Off are set for both 2012 and 2013. Kentucky was the marquee school in 2011, and Ohio State will serve a similar role in 2012, with Rhode Island, Seton Hall, and Washington State also aboard. The 2013 quartet is more impressive; however, as Louisville will find itself in the same field as an ACC blueblood for the second consecutive season. A season after joining Duke in the 2012 Battle 4 Atlantis, the Cardinals will head to the Mohegan Sun in 2013 alongside North Carolina, along with Fairfield and Richmond.
Illinois State, who finished second to Illinois in the Cancun Challenge this season, will fly south again. They'll be one of the four host schools for the South Padre Invitational in 2012. http://wjbc.com/illinois-state-men-to-play-in-2012-south-padre-invitational/ Fellow Missouri Valley school Northern Iowa went 4-0 in the event a few weeks ago
As always, if you have any early season event info for 2012, please leave a comment or email me at bloggingthebracket at gmail dot com.