San Diego State, UCLA To Headline Hoops Event At Viejas Arena?
Aztecs are scrambling to find another event for OOC games.
SDSU might host a mini-tournament
With the Orlando bubble event being put on by ESPN getting scrapped, teams are scrambling to fill out non-conference games. San Diego State was to be in one of those events but with that no longer happening the Aztecs are working with UCLA for an event of their own at Viejas Arena on Nov. 25 and 27.
“It would be great,” said Aztecs senior Matt Mitchell, who grew up in Southern California. “We’re ready to play whoever, wherever, whenever. You give us a day, you give us a team, you give us a place, we’ll show up ready to play.”
Sources: San Diego State is endeavoring to host an MTE at Viejas Arena that would feature UCLA and two other mid-major programs. Both the Aztecs and Bruins were initially headed to Orlando.
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) October 26, 2020
The schools are looking for two other mid-majors for this event and it would make sense to have some schools in the Southern California area to join this event. There is no word on who those teams are but it likely could be a Big West or WCC team in the area like Pepperdine, UC-Irvine, San Diego, Long Beach State, or other teams nearby.
This scrambling is not unexpected as the ESPN events were cancelled due to the differences in COVID-19 testing protocols between what the Disney-owned resorts were requiring compared to what schools were doing with coronavirus testing.
Non-conference games may not be worth the hassle at this point and maybe focusing on league games only could be the right move to preserve the upcoming college basketball and also even more importantly its cash cow in March Madness.
However, if these events can work out across the country that would be great for more games and also give more data points for the NCAA Tournament with seeding and at-large bids.