UConn agrees to play in massive Nike basketball tournament

May 12, 2012; Eugene, OR, USA; Nike co-founder Phil Knight. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

UConn has agreed to be one of 16 teams in a two-tournament Nike mega-event in 2017. The idea, which came from Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis, is to bring the premier basketball programs in the country together to celebrate the 80th birthday of Nike founder Phil Knight.

The tournament will be held in Portland, Ore. during November 2017 and feature two eight-team brackets. The other fifteen schools who have agreed to play are:

• Kentucky (SEC)
• Florida (SEC)
• Michigan State (Big Ten)
• Ohio State (Big Ten)
• Duke (ACC)
• North Carolina (ACC)
• Georgetown (Big East)
• Texas (Big 12)
• Oklahoma (Big 12)
• Stanford (Pac-12)
• Oregon (Pac-12)
• Xavier (A-10)
• Butler (A-10)
• Gonzaga (WCC)
• Portland (WCC)

It's still a ways off so there aren't pairings yet, but however it shakes out it should make for one hell of a week of basketball. The only safe bet is that UConn won't be facing off against Georgetown, since there is a cap of two teams per conference and conference opponents will presumably be split. Also worth mentioning: that two team cap means that our Orange buddies to the north didn't merit an invitation.

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