CU Announces New Men's Hoops Classic

Critics of Colorado men's basketball's non-conference schedule in recent years have wondered why the state's universities don't play each other in a pre-season tournament, saying it would be a way to bolster the programs' visibility and provide good competition. It appears someone was listening as CU announced the inaugural Colorado Classic, which will be held at Denver's Pepsi Center Nov. 26.

The four-team double-header will feature the Buffs against Saint Mary's College (Calif.) and the Colorado State Rams vs. the University of Denver Pioneers.

"We are excited to take the team to Denver to play a very difficult non-conference opponent in Saint Mary's," CU head coach Ricardo said in a press release.

Event organizers, Band Marketing and Partners, expect the Colorado Classic to become a yearly event.

Attendance at CU men's basketball home games has been mediocre at best for years, and CU athletic director Mike Bohn said playing the classic in Denver could help market the Buffs to a wider audience.

"We recognize the importance of reaching our valued constituents in the Denver market, and showcasing the University of Colorado men's basketball team in a great facility like the Pepsi Center certainly helps," Bohn said.

Tickets, which will cost $5-$50, go on sale Oct. 1. The games will be televised regionally on Fox Sports Net.

Patton has long been criticized for poor non-conference scheduling. The classic could prove an upgrade in CU's slate in years to come. According to a press release, BMP is currently discussing future match-ups with Alabama, Gonzaga, North Carolina, UCLA, Arizona, Louisville and Connecticut, who have all expressed interest in participating in future Colorado Classics.

As for St. Mary's, the Gaels were 25-9, finished second to Gonzaga in their conference last season and earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.

BuffStampede Top Stories