Border Gradient

Matchups

The fourth annual State Farm Champions Classic is a single-night event that hosts four of the most storied and accomplished teams in college basketball: Duke, Michigan State, Kentucky and Kansas. Duke. Last year at Chicago’s United Center, Michigan State defeated Kentucky and Kansas overcame Duke.

Border Gradient

Michigan State vs. Duke

This will be only the second meeting between the schools in the last 11 years. Duke holds a 7-2 edge in the all-time series, including 4-1 in NCAA Tournament battles. The teams have squared off twice in the Final Four, first in 1988 when the Jayhawks prevailed, 66-59, at Kemper Arena in Kansas City. Coach Larry Brown and Kansas would claim the national title two days later with a win over Oklahoma. At the 1991 Final Four in Indianapolis, the Blue Devils got revenge with a 72-65 win in the national championship game. The most recent meeting was at the 2011 EA Sports Maui Invitational championship game, where Duke scored a 68-61 victory. Current players who appeared in that game include Andre Dawkins of Duke, and Nadir Tharpe and Justin Wesley of Kansas.

Border Gradient

Kansas vs. Kentucky

Kentucky leads the all-time series, 12-10, but this will be the first meeting since March 27, 2005. The Spartans won that memorable game in Austin, Texas, 94-88, in double overtime to secure a berth in the Final Four. UK’s Patrick Sparks rattled in a three-pointer at the end of regulation to force overtime. The Champions Classic will be the teams’ first regular season meeting since a 79-74 Wildcats win on Dec. 13, 2003. In a series that dates back to 1935, MSU and UK have played four times in the NCAA Tournament, with the Spartans winning three times. They have never met in a Final Four game.