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76 Classic Announces Field for 2009, Including Five 2008 NCAA Tournament Participants

Nov. 28, 2008

ESPN Regional Television, Inc., a subsidiary of ESPN, announced Thursday the field for the third annual 76 Classic. The 12-game, bracketed collegiate basketball tournament features eight schools. The games in 2009 will be played Thanksgiving weekend at the Anaheim Convention Center adjacent to Disneyland on Nov. 26, 27 and 29. Tournament pairings and game times will be announced at a later date.

The 76 Classic field for 2009 includes eight teams from eight conferences: UCLA (Pac-10), Texas A&M (Big 12), West Virginia (Big East) Long Beach State (Big West), Clemson (ACC), Butler (Horizon), Minnesota (Big 10) and Portland (West Coast). Five of the eight teams earned berths in the 2007-08 NCAA Tournament: UCLA, Texas A&M, West Virginia, Clemson and Butler.

“Once again, an outstanding field will represent conferences from around the country for the 76 Classic,” said Pete Derzis, senior vice president and general manager, ESPN Regional Television. “The Anaheim Classic showcases quality competition and an outstanding off-court experience for the student-athletes, coaches and staff. Fans will have an opportunity to spend the Thanksgiving weekend watching college basketball and enjoying Disneyland, along with all Southern California has to offer.”

The Big West Conference again serves as the host for the Anaheim Classic at the 7,800-seat Anaheim Convention Center, which has served the conference for the past nine years as the site of its postseason tournament. The 76 Classic features four games each day, with the two undefeated teams competing in the championship game on ESPN2 on the final day.

Along with the 76 Classic, ESPN Regional Television stages four other eight-team exempt basketball events: the O’Reilly Auto Parts Puerto Rico Tip-Off in San Juan; the Old Spice Classic at Disney’s Wide World of Sports near Orlando; the Charleston Classic in South Carolina; and the newly created Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu, set to debut in 2009.

Tickets for the 2009 76 Classic are expected to go on sale next summer. For more information, visit the official Web site: