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On The Menu: Thursday, November 19, 2015

After a day without, today begins a stretch of seven straight weekdays with daytime basketball, thanks to holiday tournaments.

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Game information courtesy Matt College Sports on TV Website, which has even more games listed.

All times listed are Eastern, adjust accordingly.

Puerto Rico Tip-Off Quarterfinals

PRTO Bracket

The bracket for the 2015 Puerto Rico Tip-Off, courtesy ESPN Events.

Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Temple Owls, 11:30 a.m. (ESPNU)
No. 22 Butler Bulldogs vs. Missouri State Bears, approx. 2 p.m. (ESPNU)
Mississippi State Bulldogs vs. Miami Hurricanes, 5 p.m. (ESPN2)
Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. No. 16 Utah Utes, approx. 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

Of these four games, the opener is the most intriguing, as the Golden Gophers looked a bit better than expected in picking up two home wins from two overmatched opponents, while the Owls didn't put up much resistance outside of the first 10 minutes or so of their opener against top-ranked North Carolina. The Bulldogs and Utes, the favorites on each side of the bracket should advance easily, as should the Hurricanes, especially with Mississippi State coming off a home loss to Southern on Monday night.

Charleston Classic Quarterfinals

Charleston

The 2015 Charleston Classic Bracket, courtesy ESPN Events

Ole Miss Rebels vs. George Mason Patriots, 12 p.m. (ESPN3)
Oklahoma State Cowboys vs. Towson Tigers, approx. 2:30 p.m. (ESPN3)
Long Beach State 49ers vs. Seton Hall Pirates, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers vs. Bradley Braves, approx. 9:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

The Rebels and Cowboys should romp in the afternoon session, while each evening session game is intriguing for different reasons. It will be interesting to see if the 49ers can build off their one-point Tip-Off Marathon win over BYU by picking up a victory over the Pirates—one that would move them into a winner's bracket that should feature some RPI-boosting matchups. In the nightcap, how will the Cavaliers respond to Monday night's stunning loss to George Washington? The Braves shouldn't test them really, but it will be interesting to see if Virginia has made any defensive adjustments in the past 72 hours or so.

Gavitt Tip-Off Games

Rutgers Scarlet Knights at St. John's Red Storm, 7 p.m. (FS1)
Creighton Bluejays at No. 14 Indiana Hoosiers, 7 p.m. (BTN)
Iowa Hawkeyes at Marquette Golden Eagles, 9 p.m. (FS1)

The game at Carnesecca should be the closest, but that's only because it features teams that will likely finish near the bottom of the Big Ten and Big East. As for the others, while the Bluejays romped through their Men Who Speak Up Main Event home games, a trip to Bloomington is a considerable step up in class (though Creighton is also a step up from Austin Peay and Eastern Illinois, the two teams the Hoosiers have routed so far). In Milwaukee, the Golden Eagles will again face a challenging visitor—a Hawkeye team that should see its first real challenge of the season after picking up a pair of blowout wins over Gardner-Webb and Coppin State. Bradley Center fans should enjoy their third close game in a row this evening, which should make up for some of the RPI stinkers on the remainder of the non-conference home slate.

Other Thursday Entrees

George Washington Colonials at USF Bulls, 7 p.m. (ASN/CSN Mid-Atlantic Plus/MASN2/ESPN3)
A Colonial letdown tonight would be ill-advised, and possibly unlikely, as the Bulls lost to NJIT last time out at the Sun Dome.

Texas Southern Tigers at Clemson Tigers (Men Who Speak Up Main Event), 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
Last season, Clemson would have probably been on upset alert, but Texas Southern doesn't have the quality of 2014-15's edition of the Tigers. That might not mean much when SWAC play begins, but it will limit TSU's chances in November and December.

Green Bay Phoenix at Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (NIT Season Tip-Off), 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
In this case, even though the Phoenix aren't at their "stay in the at-large hunt until the end" level of last season, the Yellow Jackets are poor enough to possibly be stunned.

South Dakota State Jackrabbits at Illinois State Redbirds (Cancun Challenge), 8 p.m. (ESPN3)
Scott Nagy's Jackrabbits' two road games in this event are winnable, in theory, but it topping Dan Muller's Redbirds in Normal is a more difficult assignment than winning at TCU at this point.

Stony Brook Seawolves at No. 17 Vanderbilt Commodores, 8 p.m. (SEC Network+)
The America East favorites should keep it close for about a half in Nashville.

Boise State Broncos at No. 12 Arizona Wildcats (Directv Wooden Legacy), 8:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks Main and Arizona)
After dropping their opener at Montana, the Broncos routed Northern Arizona by 20, putting up 101 in the process. But a trip to Tucson might be a struggle, considering the Wildcats' early offensive efficiency and strong showings on the defensive end, especially in limiting opposition second chances.

South Alabama Jaguars at No. 23 LSU Tigers (FanDuel Legends Classic), 9 p.m. (SEC Network)
Yet another chance to watch Ben Simmons for a bit. The Jaguars shouldn't offer much resistance to the Bayou Bengals.

Pepperdine Waves at UCLA Bruins, 10:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks National and L.A.)
The Waves, possibly the third-best team in the WCC, another early test for a Bruins team that's already struggled to put away Cal Poly and lost to Monmouth.

Mount St. Mary's Mountaineers at Washington Huskies (Battle 4 Atlantis), 10:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks Washington)
The Huskies' home opener comes against a team that will contend alongside Robert Morris in the NEC, and who next travels across the state to take on Gonzaga.

SMU Mustangs at Stanford Cardinal, 11:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
This one would have been a little more interesting had the NCAA not banned the Mustangs from the postseason—but at least they remain a quality win opportunity for their opponents.

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