Friday, November 4, 2016

News On The Horizon 11/4/2016

2016-17 College Basketball Round-Robin Exempt Tournaments--Blogging The Bracket
Red Diamond Roundball Classic
FIU Panthers (C-USA)
Jacksonville Dolphins (A-Sun)
South Alabama Jaguars (Sun Belt)
Youngstown State Penguins (Horizon)

The Jaguars host this event over the weekend before Thanksgiving, but Jacksonville is the only squad of the four that finished with a record of .500 or better last season—at 16-16.

This is another event that serves as a conference reunion of sorts. South Alabama and JU were both charter Sun Belt members, though the Dolphins left for the A-Sun in 1998, with FIU arguably taking their place. The Panthers eventually left for C-USA 15 years later.
Tarkett Sports Classic
Austin Peay Governors (OVC)
Delaware Blue Hens (CAA)
Miami U
Miami (Ohio) RedHawks (MAC)
Northern Kentucky Norse (Horizon)

Of the four teams headed to Oxford, Ohio for the weekend before Thanksgiving, only OVC Tournament champion Austin Peay finished .500 or better, and the 18-18 Governors had to claim their conference's auto bid to do that. Even though NKU has participated in its previous two conference tournaments (one in the Horizon, one in the A-Sun), 2017 will be the first March in which they'll be eligible for the Big Dance.
Bill Frack Tournament
Bowling Green Falcons (MAC)
Green Bay Phoenix (Horizon)
Murray St
Murray State Racers (OVC)

UMKC Kangaroos (WAC)

This event is named in memory of one of Falcon basketball's most vocal supporters, so vocal in fact that the court at the Stroh Center bears his name. The hosts can make Frack proud by punching above their weight in this pre-Thanksgiving round-robin that features a 2016 NCAA squad, Green Bay, and perennial OVC contender Murray State. On the other hand, UMKC, like Bowling Green, finished last season under .500.
Men vs. Cancer Classic
Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners (WAC)
North Dakota
North Dakota Fighting Hawks (Big Sky)
North Florida Ospreys (A-Sun)
Wright St
Wright State Raiders (Horizon)

While just one 2016 NCAA squad—Cal State Bakersfield—is headed to Dayton for this event, A-Sun regular season champ UNF and the hosts, who fell to Green Bay in the Horizon final, both had chances to join the Roadrunners in the field of 68. All three, and the Fighting Hawks, a team on the rise in the Big Sky, will aim to use their three games at the Nutter Center to get on the right track for 2017.

NIU Showcase
Cal Poly
Cal Poly Mustangs (Big West)
Elon Phoenix (CAA)
Northern Illinois Huskies (MAC)
UIC Flames (Horizon)

For the second season in a row, the Huskies will look to sweep through their own round-robin tournament, as NIU took down the South Dakota Coyotes, CSUN Matadors, and Wright State Raiders to open the 2016-17 season—one that ended with 21 wins and a Vegas 16 berth. Mark Montgomery's team will be favored to go 3-0 again, as none of their rivals managed to be even remotely competitive in their respective league races last season.
Sanford Pentagon Showcase
ETSU Buccaneers (SoCon)
Milwaukee Panthers (Horizon)
SD State
South Dakota State Jackrabbits (Summit)
UC Irvine Anteaters (Big West)

Even with Milwaukee and SDSU welcoming new coaches this November, this tournament in Sioux Falls should be one of the more competitive ones of this type. The Jackrabbits are coming off an NCAA bid, and they should compete for another, while UC Irvine will tussle with the Long Beach State 49ers in the Big West, even if Mamadou Ndiaye is now a pro, while ETSU should be the Chattanooga Mocs' most serious challengers in the SoCon. Note that South Dakota State won all four of its Cancun Challenge games last season, as a team in the visitors' bracket.
Will Cleveland State’s Student Outreach Pay Off?--Campus Pressbox
Vikings Host Tiffin on Monday Night in Exhibition
Grand Rapids Drive gives Ray McCallum best chance to excel--Detroit Free Press
Whipped by Wayne State--Varsity News
One On One With DeShawndre
Monday’s Exhibition Against Ferris State FREE For All
Men’s Basketball Hosts Judson in Exhibition

UIC Breezes Past North Park,
Men's Basketball Opens 2016-17 Campaign Saturday With Exhibition

Women’s Basketball Team Tops Indianapolis in Exhibition
Testimony raises questions about NKU's handling of 'sexual incident' involving hoop players--Cincinnati Enquirer

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