Team Changes to ESPN Events Early-Season Basketball Tournaments
DePaul to Replace Georgetown in PK80 Invitational
Sacramento State to participate in Wooden Legacy; Tournament Matchups Revealed
ESPN Events has made changes to two of its early-season basketball tournaments for the 2017 season. DePaul will replace Georgetown in the PK80 presented by State Farm, and is slated to face Michigan State on Thursday, Nov. 23. DePaul joins the “Victory” bracket, with fellow participants Arkansas, Michigan State, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Portland and UConn.
“We are pleased that DePaul has agreed to participate in the PK80 Victory Bracket and are very appreciative of the efforts of DePaul’s leadership in making this happen,” said Pete Derzis, senior vice president of ESPN Events and college sports programming. “DePaul has a rich basketball heritage and, under Coach Leitao’s direction, is a rapidly rising program that will be an excellent addition to the PK80 field.”
DePaul Athletic Director Jean Lenti Ponsetto
“DePaul is honored to be participating in the PK80. We have such great admiration for the leadership and many contributions Phil Knight has made to intercollegiate athletics and it’s a privilege as one of Nike’s schools to participate in this elite event. We’re also grateful to our colleagues at ESPN for recognizing DePaul’s place in college basketball history as a proud member of the BIG EAST Conference. It’s a compliment to Coach Leitao’s leadership and DePaul’s commitment to being Chicago’s basketball team as we return to playing in the city at the new Wintrust Arena.”
DePaul head coach Dave Leitao
“The opportunity to play in this event to celebrate Phil Knight’s 80th birthday and his impact on college basketball is a thrill and an honor. The eight-team Victory Bracket is full of great programs and we’re excited to make the trip to Portland to face the challenge that only the PK80 presents. DePaul’s basketball history, combined with the other teams competing, illustrates the magnitude of this tournament. It also provides us the great opportunity to play in front of our alumni and fans in the Pacific Northwest in college basketball’s signature events this season.”
The Blue Demons were originally scheduled to appear in the 2017 Wooden Legacy, a three-day, multi-team men’s college basketball event played yearly over the Thanksgiving holiday at California State University, Fullerton. Sacramento State will take their place, joining a field that includes host team Cal State Fullerton, Georgia, Harvard, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Mary’s, San Diego State and Washington State. Matchups have been revealed and can be viewed here.