While the Connecticut Huskies have nothing left to do this year they know one thing for sure–they’ll be in a super-competitive 2K Sports Classic at Madison Square Garden once next season rolls around. The former Coaches vs. Cancer Classic tournament now benefits the Wounded Warrior Project.
The four teams will each host a regional round from November 14-17 with the winners scheduled to meet in the semifinals at MSG. Regardless of outcomes, the four teams will also advance to the Championship Round games on November 21-22.
The defending champion is Alabama, who defeated Villanova 77-55. Some other notable teams that participated in last November’s tournament were Oregon State, Purdue and South Dakota State, who plays tonight in the Summit League championship game hoping to punch their ticket to the big dance.
Past winners include Mississippi State (2011), Syracuse (2009), Duke (2008) and Memphis. Memphis beat the Huskies in the final back in 2007, 81-70. Memphis is tied with Syracuse and Texas for most all-time appearances with four.
Connecticut will have a lot of time to sit and wonder what could have been in this year’s NCAA Tournament. They were a sure bet to make the tournament had it not been for their low APR scores. Head coach Kevin Ollie led the Huskies to their 20th 20-win season in the past quarter-century. They finished 20-10 (10-8 Big East). Ollie is sure to be back thanks to his multi-year contract but some familiar faces to UConn fans might not be–most notably star guard Shabazz Napier, who has an outside shot of heading to the NBA. He’s likely a mid-to-late second round pick. In other words, unless his projection suddenly skyrockets, he should be back in Storrs for his senior year.
If nothing else, at least the Huskies have the 2K Sports Classic to look forward to in 2013-14.