Butler (5-1) and LSU (4-2) both won first-round games on Thanksgiving Thursday before falling to No. 5 Oklahoma State and No. 21 Memphis, respectively, on Friday. While the two ranked teams will stage a rematch from earlier this season in Sunday night's title game, the Bulldogs and Tigers make for an interesting appetizer.
Butler, in year one under coach Brandon Miller, is actually the tournament's second-highest rated team, according to the latest RPI projections. The Bulldogs come in at No. 20, 10 spots ahead of Josh Pastner's Memphis squad.
LSU, which really doesn't have any more RPI-enticing tilts on its non-conference schedule (and only a handful even including the SEC slate), needs a win on a stage like this with a name-brand opponent like Butler in the worst way to help the team's chances in March.
This is the second game of the day scheduled in Orlando, with Washington State and Saint Joseph's (PA) tipping off at 11 a.m. LSU-Butler will technically begin 20 minutes after that game ends. I'll have live coverage at the link below from wire to wire.
GAME THREAD: LSU vs. Butler