ACC Games To Watch for Upcoming 2017-18 Season

With the basketball season right around the corner, starting Nov. 10, let’s break down some highlighted games and match-ups in one of the most talented, lethal conferences – the ACC.

A few exhibition games here and there, we won’t see action as a collective until the 19th annual Big 10/ACC Challenge Nov. 27-30. The conference leads the Big Ten in the challenge, 11-5-2.

ACC conference play

The ACC starts conference play Dec. 9, when Duke travels to Boston College. Don’t expect a riveting contest between the Eagles and the Blue Devils. Boston College has finished dead last the past two season, and they had an infamous 0-18 conference play record during the 2015-16 season. The battle begins in a conference that has won eight of the last 17 NCAA Championship Tournaments and combined for 63 Final Four appearances.

Tough proving ground for the faint-hearted.

The following match ups are in chronological order as the season progresses and give fans some excitement to look forward to.

Virginia at Virginia Tech –  Wednesday, January 3rd

Why not highlight a showdown between the two in-state teams. Virginia is looking to find its identity again on the road. Last year Virginia Tech topped off Virginia in a double overtime game in Blacksburg. It may be a down year for Tony Bennett and the Cavaliers, which will make this rivalry all the more interesting during the 17-18 season. 

North Carolina at Notre Dame – Saturday, January 13th

Any game that pits two of the most talented players in the conference head-to-head. Joel Berry II is an all-around stud, when healthy. He is an early favorite to win ACC Player of the Year. But Notre Dame forward Bonzie Colson, another favorite to win the PoY, is going to protect his house when the Tar Heels come to town.

Duke at Miami – Monday, January 15th

Miami is a contender in the ACC. This isn’t news. They won the ACC title in 2013, and they see no reason why this year isn’t their year. Highly touted freshman Lonnie Walker is recovering from a knee injury, but should be back by the start of the season and fully healthy by this game. The game is highlighted because Duke is favored to win the ACC with their talented group of incoming freshman, giving the Hurricanes the ultimate proving ground early in conference play. Duke will look to outplay with talent in order to overcome a more experienced, sized Miami team.

Louisville at Miami – Wednesday, January 24th

Miami could have momentum coming into this contest if they manage a win at home against Duke. Louisville’s season is going to start with distraction, as Rick Pitino will be suspended the first five games for an off the court scandal. In early season polls, Miami sits atop of the Cardinals, who while was a No. 2 seed in last year’s tournament lost a key piece in Donovan Mitchell.

Duke at UNC – Thursday, February 8th

It’s the rivalry game we as basketball fans wait all season for. It’s part one of the epic saga between two powerhouse programs, separated by the 10-mile stretch on Tobacco Road. This game will be a perfect gauge of talent among the two programs. For obvious reasons, this game is going to draw the attention of the entire NCAA, not just the ACC. 

Last season’s results: Duke topped UNC, 86-78, at Cameron while the Tar Heels had the final say at home, closing out the season with a 90-83 win.

Louisville at Duke – Wednesday, February 21st

This is a big test for Louisville. The Cardinals look for a pair of wins in thee days against UNC and Duke. Two wins would give Louisville a boost up in polls and nods for better seeding in the tournament. While back to back games against UNC and Duke is never easy, the Cards have a veteran team capable of handling this tough test. It won’t be an easy year for the Cardinals. Hopefully they have talent to back up the team.

UNC at Duke – Saturday, March 3rd

The battle on Tobacco Road part two is a hands-down, no-brainer hyped game. Why not save the best for last. UNC not only has to take on a prolific Blue Devils team, but they have to keep their focus in one of the most legendary gyms in Cameron Indoor. At this point in the season, you can expect the two teams to be vying for the best eye bid. It will be a challenge to take on the Crazies at home. Not to mention it’s senior night for Grayson Allen. Talk about your momentum. 

Player watch list:

  • Joel Berry II, UNC

  • Deng Adel, Louisville

  • Bonzie Colson, Notre Dame

  • Grayson Allen, Duke

  • Bruce Brown, Miami

  • Marvin Bagley, Duke

An Early Look At The ACC

ACC Basketball

We are 51 days away from the college basketball season. While college basketball season is fast approaching, many of us cannot have the new season come soon enough. With that said, let’s take an early look at the ACC for next season. Here’s our 1 through 15.

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Start of live period brings highly anticipated excitement

If you ask anyone affiliated with high school and college basketball what the most chaotic and busy part of the year is, they’ll probably give you one of two answers: the March Madness, or the July Live Periods.

For four days out of the second, third, and fourth days of each week Division I coaches have the opportunity to watch players all across the country, making each live period a critical time for scouting.

Today, at 5:00 PM, marked the beginning of the first live period, and dozens of D-I coaches flocked to Albright College to see what kind of talent the Elite camp has to offer.

To read about the best performers on the first day of live period, click here

Some of the most notable programs that showed up to scout our talented pool of players included DePaul, St. Bonaventure, George Mason, and Hofstra. A wealth of Patriot and Ivy League coaches were also in attendance, as the bulk of this week’s coaches in attendance were of the mid-major variety.

A bulk of the players that showed off their skills already hold solid lists of Division I offers. Specifically, two of our rising juniors have impressive lists of offers that they can certainly build on this week and in the remaining live periods this summer as members of the class of 2018.

Cormac Ryan (Milton Academy ’18), one of the top prospects at Elite 1, already holds offers from Tulane, DePaul, St. John’s, Davidson, Rice, Boston College, and Penn, While he also holds interest from Notre Dame, Stanford, and Michigan, according to Verbal Commits, the coaching staff of the Maryland Terrapins also told Ryan they planned to be in attendance to see him play this week. 

“I’m excited to get out here with my team, it should be a fun July,” said Ryan. “Hopefully me and my team can get a couple of wins and get looked at. I’m trying to prove that I’m just as good as anybody else, I improved my game in the spring and I want to show that I’m continuing to get better.”

Atiba Taylor (Hackensack ’18), an explosive 6-foot-3 guard  also has the potential to add to his already impressive offer sheet, which includes Connecticut, Rutgers, Manhattan, Fairfield, Rider, Seton Hall, and Temple. Taylor also cited recent interest from SMU and Louisville since the contact period began for rising juniors.

With three days left of live period, countless other players are poised to show off impressive skill sets to a growing list of D-I coaches. We’re looking forward to another great day of hoops!

The Basketball Tournament presented by Jack Link’s® Protein Snacks Announces Record $2 Million Prize and Sites

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Charlotte, Chicago, Philadelphia and Los Angeles To Host Regionals; Super 16 in Philadelphia; Semifinals and Winner-­‐Takes-­‐All Championship in New York

BOSTON – Feb. 23, 2016 – The Basketball Tournament (TBT) presented by Jack Link’s® Protein Snacks today announced that they have doubled the winner-­‐take-­‐all prize money to $2 Million for 2016, with the winning team’s fans sharing 10% of the prize: $200,000. The open-­‐to-­‐all, single-­‐elimination, summer basketball event will be open to applicants starting April 1 and play its winner-­‐takes-­‐all, $2 million championship on ESPN August 2nd.

“Doubling the prize to $2 million and allowing the winning team’s fans to share 10% of that is a massive step towards our goal of empowering sports fans,” said Jon Mugar, TBT founder and CEO. “The interest and support we’ve received from all areas of the basketball world has been overwhelming and we can’t wait to see what communities of teams form over the next several months.”

TBT’s social media driven application period launches on April 1 on TheTournament.com. The field will be made of 64 teams who will play in four regions of 16 apiece. The top 12 vote getters by fans in each region will receive “automatic” bids, while TBT will select four at-­‐large teams per region to complete the field. Teams can qualify for TBT 2016 only by getting votes from fans who register on the site, with the top 100 fans of the winning team splitting $200k (10% of the total prize).

The 2016 Regional Cities will be: South (Charlotte) July 9, 10; West (Los Angeles) July 9, 10; Midwest (Chicago) July 16, 17; Northeast (Philadelphia) July 16, 17. Super 16 & Quarterfinals (Philadelphia) July 21, 21, 23. Semifinals (New York) will be on Saturday July 30th with the Championship (also New York) on Tuesday August 2nd.

The Super 16 will take place at Philadelphia University from July 21-­‐23,and the semifinals and championship game will be at Fordham University in New York for the second consecutive year. ESPN will televise the three games from New York live.

TBT’s 2015 field, included hundreds of players who have competed at the highest levels all over the world. Overseas Elite, a team of veteran international professional players, won last year’s

$1 million winner-­‐take-­‐all title at Fordham’s historic Rose Hill Gymnasium. Fans who voted for Overseas Elite shared in the winnings, taking home a combined $50,000 of the grand prize. The Notre Dame Fighting Alumni, a squad made up of some of the best players in University of Notre Dame history, won the inaugural title and $500,000 in 2014. Over 300 teams applied to join the tournament last year, which saw the winner-­‐take-­‐all prize double in value.

Players must be 18 years of age or older and all games are played under college rules with two 18-­‐minute halves. In addition to Overseas Elite, university-­‐based alumni teams representing schools like Syracuse University, Notre Dame, Princeton, Villanova, Virginia and others have competed in TBT’s previous editions, with more likely to join them in this and future years.

ABOUT THE BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT

Conceived by CEO Jonathan Mugar as the ultimate opportunity for fans, athletes and social media mavens to live out their dreams and chase once-­‐in-­‐a-­‐lifetime opportunities, TBT’s foundation as a high-­‐stakes, professionally run and organized sporting event, now sees it entering its third year. In its first two seasons, The Basketball Tournament drew over 400 team entries from around the country, with participants ranging from professional players and recent college stars to pickup basketball players and people who have never played above high school. Among the event’s advisors are Tony Ponturo of Ponturo Management Group, Andy Dolich of Dolich Consulting, and Len DeLuca of Len DeLuca & Associates, LLC. The partnership agreement was secured by TBT’s sponsorship agency of record, Equity Sports Partners, which is led by Cliff Kaplan. For more details visit http://www.thetournament.com/

Jack Link’s® Protein Snacks – Feed Your Wild Side™

Jack Link’s is a global leader in protein snacks and the No. 1 meat snack manufacturer worldwide. Headquartered in Minong, Wis., Jack Link’s is a family-­‐owned company that represents a heritage of quality and consumer trust, with the mission to Feed Your Wild Side. Jack Link’s offers more than 100 premium protein snacks in a variety of flavors, sizes and price points, appealing to nearly every consumer and occasion. Check out JackLinks.com for more information on the brand.

Media Contacts:

Joe Favorito, Kirmser Ponturo Group | joefavorito2@gmail.com 201-­‐746-­‐0005

Jesse Leeds, TBT | jesse@thetournament.com 845-­‐612-­‐9323