PRINCETON, N,J./BROOKLYN, N.Y. – The Oral Roberts men's basketball team will take part in the 2017 Legends Classic during the 2017-18 season, it was announced Monday by the organization.
Pepperdine will host Montana, Oral Roberts, and UC-Santa Barbara in the Subregional Round of the Legends Classic, Nov. 20-21, in Malibu, Calif.
All four games of the Championship Rounds will be televised on ESPN networks.
Joining Penn State, Oklahoma State, Pittsburgh, and Texas A&M in the 2017 Legends Classic are Pepperdine, Montana, Oral Roberts, and UC-Santa Barbara.
Penn State, Oklahoma State, Pittsburgh, and Texas A&M will each host a pair of regional round games on campus in addition to facing off at Barclays Center in the Championship Round on Nov. 20-21. The four regional round hosts combine for 75 NCAA Tournament appearances and eight Final Fours.
Oral Roberts (Head Coach: Scott Sutton, Summit League) - In 18 years at Oral Roberts, Scott Sutton has guided the Golden Eagles to nearly 330 wins and nine finishes among the top two in the Summit League...11 of 15 players, three of whom are starters, are expected to return next season, including leading scorer center Albert Owens and guard Kris Martin...Oral Roberts, which has been to the NCAA Tournament five times, will be making its first Legends Classic appearance.
Penn State (Head Coach: Patrick Chambers, Big Ten Conference) - In his sixth season, Patrick Chambers has brought new energy to the Penn State program...with the Nittany Lions' last two recruiting classes being the two best in school history, there are no seniors and only four juniors on this year's 14-man roster, highlighted by junior guard Shep Garner, sophomore Josh Reaves and freshmen Tony Carr, Lamar Stevens, and Mike Watkins...Penn State has been to nine NCAA Tournaments and one Final Four...this will be its first Legends Classic appearance.
Oklahoma State (Head Coach: Brad Underwood, Big 12 Conference) - Brad Underwood is in his first season at Oklahoma State after guiding Stephen F. Austin to an 89-14 record in his three seasons there...he is tied for the 10th fastest head coach to reach 100 career wins...this year, the Cowboys are XX-X and projected to be in the NCAA Tournament field...12 of the 14 players on this year's team are underclassmen, including guard Jawun Evans and swingman Jeffrey Carroll...OSU will also welcome a top-25 recruiting class next season...the Cowboys, who will be making their Legends Classic debut, have won two national championships and have been to the NCAA Tournament 27 times, which includes six Final Fours.
Pittsburgh (Head Coach: Kevin Stallings, Atlantic Coast Conference) - Kevin Stallings, who has over 470 career victories, took over at Pitt this season after spending the previous 17 seasons at Vanderbilt...the Panthers, XX-XX on the year, will turn forward Ryan Luther, guard Cameron Johnson and a host of talented newcomers as four starters are graduating...Pittsburgh has been to 26 NCAA Tournaments, including one trip to the Final Four...the Panthers have played in two previous Legends Classics (2008, 2013), winning both with a perfect 8-0 record.
Texas A&M (Head Coach: Billy Kennedy, Southeastern Conference) - Head coach Billy Kennedy, with more than 325 career victories to his credit, is in his sixth season at Texas A&M...the 2015-16 SEC Coach of the Year has the Aggies at XX-XX heading into the SEC Tournament...nine of A&M's 15 players are underclassmen, including four starters, highlighted by guard Admon Gilder, center Tyler Davis, and three-time SEC Rookie of the Week Robert Williams...the Aggies have been to 13 NCAA Tournaments and will be making their first Legends Classic appearance.
Pepperdine (Head Coach: Marty Wilson, West Coast Conference) - In six seasons at Pepperdine, head coach Marty Wilson has rebuilt the Waves, amassing more than 80 wins after inheriting a team coming off six-straight losing seasons...this year's team is expected to return as many as 10 players, including two expected starters who missed all or most of the 2016-17 season, Amadi Udenyi and Kameron Edwards...Pepperdine will be making its Legends Classic debut and has been to 13 NCAA Tournaments.
Montana (Head Coach: Travis DeCuire, Big Sky Conference) - Montana alum Travis DeCuire has done something no coach in school history has done - lead the Griz to back-to-back 20-win seasons in his first two years at the helm of the program...this year Montana is XX-XX with a roster that features 11 underclassmen and no seniors in the starting rotation...the Griz are led by the sophomore backcourt of Ahmaad Rorie and Michael Oquine...Montana has been to 10 NCAA Tournaments...this will be the Griz' first appearance in the Legends Classic.
UC-Santa Barbara (Head Coach: Bob Williams, Big West Conference) - The winningest coach in UC Santa Barbara history, Bob Williams has led the Gauchos to over 310 wins and 15 winning seasons in 19 seasons...this season, UCSB features a 16-man roster with only one senior on it...four starters are expected back next year, including leading scorers guard Gabe Vincent and forward Jalen Canty...the Gauchos have been to six NCAA Tournaments...this will be their first Legends Classic appearance.
The complete schedule for the 2017 Legends Classic will be announced at a later date.
In the 2016 Legends Classic, Notre Dame led by as many as 12 points in the second half before fending off Northwestern, 70-66, to win the title. Tournament MVP Matt Farrell and Steve Vasturia scored 18 points apiece for the Irish.
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The Legends Classic is produced by the Gazelle Group of Princeton, N.J. The Gazelle Group is a sports marketing firm, specializing in event production and management, client representation, and sponsorship consulting. Gazelle produces numerous nationally-recognized events, such as the 2K Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project, the Gotham Classic, and the College Basketball Invitational. For more information on the Gazelle Group, please visit gazellegroup.com.
The Northeast Conference (NEC) is the sponsoring conference of the Legends Classic. Now in its 36th season, the NEC is a NCAA Division I collegiate athletic association consisting of 10 institutions of higher learning located throughout six states. For more information on the NEC, visit the official website at www.northeastconference.org or follow on Twitter @NECsports.
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