Aug. 4, 2011
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Washington State University men's basketball will face Oklahoma in the first round of the 2011 76 Classic, to be held Thanksgiving weekend at the Anaheim (Calif.) Convention Center, ESPN Regional Television (ERT) announced Thursday.
The tournament, in its fifth year, will be held Thursday, Friday and Sunday, Nov. 24, 25 and 27, at the Anaheim Convention Center, which is located adjacent to Disneyland. The event, which will be telecast on ESPN2 and ESPNU, will feature 12 games through three days. Each team will compete in one game per day, advancing through a bracket-tournament format. The two teams that remain undefeated will face-off in the championship game Sunday, Nov. 27, at 6 p.m. PT on ESPN2.
Washington State and Oklahoma have never met. Both participated in the 2009 Great Alaska Shootout, where the Cougars captured the tournament championship. Depending on the outcome of its game against Oklahoma, WSU will next face either Santa Clara or New Mexico. WSU is 3-0 all-time against Santa Clara, after defeating the Broncos in overtime last season. The Cougars are 1-2 all-time against the Lobos, having last faced New Mexico March 23, 1992 in the NIT.
The 76 Classic field features Boston College (Atlantic Coast), New Mexico (Mountain West), Oklahoma (Big 12), Saint Louis (Atlantic-10), Santa Clara (West Coast) UC Riverside (Big West), Villanova (Big East) and Washington State (Pac-12).
Eleven of the 12 games will be televised with ESPNU and ESPN2 splitting the majority of the games: Boston College will face Saint Louis in the opening contest at 11 a.m. PT (ESPNU); Villanova will play UC Riverside at 1:30 p.m. (ESPN2); New Mexico will meet Santa Clara at 6 p.m. (ESPNU); and Oklahoma will face Washington State at 8:30 p.m. (ESPN2).
Five of the eight teams reached the postseason in 2010-11, including Villanova (21-12) in the NCAA Championship. Washington State (22-13) advanced to the NIT's semifinals in New York, while Boston College (21-13) and New Mexico (22-13) also competed in the postseason event. Santa Clara (24-14) defeated Iona to win the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
With the Big West Conference again serving as the host for the 76 Classic, UC Riverside (12-19) will represent the league in the tournament at the 7,500-seat Anaheim Convention Center. Lon Kruger, who coached UNLV to the 2010 76 Classic title as the Rebels downed Virginia Tech 71-59 in the finals, is the new coach at Oklahoma (14-18). Saint Louis (12-19) is coached by former ESPN commentator Rick Majerus.
The inaugural 76 Classic was played in 2007, with USC defeating Southern Illinois. In 2008, Wake Forest captured the title by beating Baylor and in 2009, West Virginia, an eventual NCAA Final Four participant, defeated Portland. Butler, which lost the 2010 national championship game to Duke, was also in the 2009 76 Classic field.
Tickets to the 2011 76 Classic will go on sale Monday, Aug. 22, and can be purchased at www.Ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Packages include all 12 games for $90 plus applicable taxes and fees, Booster tickets $50 plus applicable taxes and fees, or single-session tickets for $20 plus applicable taxes and fees. Special travel package information can be found at www.AnthonyTravel.com.
Additional information can be found on the 76 Classic website, www.76classic.com. For more information on Disneyland Resort, visit www.disneyland.com.