Basketball Classic starts here Friday!

U.S. Bank Stadium (Steve Floyd/MSR News)

Start spreading the news: Minnesota gets another major sporting event. Last February we had the biggest of them all, Super Bowl LII, and next spring the college basketball world will come dribbling to downtown Minneapolis for the NCAA Final Four at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Gopher fans’ excitement is growing in both football and basketball. The football team (6-6) shocked Wisconsin, winning (37-13) Paul Bunyan’s Axe at Madison and earning a bowl bid. It was their first win over Wisconsin since 2003 and the first win in Madison since 1994.

Head Coach Richard Pitino has his men’s Gophers basketball squad off to a 5-1 start. They dropped their first game of the year Monday at Boston College 68-56 in the BigTen/ACC Challenge. No harm in dreaming and thinking big that the Gophers can navigate through the rugged Big Ten Conference that features eight teams currently ranked in the Associated Press top 20, including number-one-ranked Ohio State.

Friday, November 30, the Gophers will play Oklahoma State at U.S. Bank Stadium in the Inaugural U.S. Bank Stadium Basketball Classic. “We couldn’t be more excited to take part in the U.S. Bank Stadium Basketball Classic,” said Pitino.

The eight-team four-game Classic starts Friday night at 7 pm with the University of Wisconsin-River Falls versus the University of St. Thomas, followed by the University of Minnesota against Oklahoma State University at 9 pm.
Saturday, December 1, starting at 5:30 pm, it’s North Dakota State versus Drake University followed by South Dakota State University versus University of Northern Iowa at 8:30 pm.

This is the precursor to the 2019 NCAA Men’s Final Four. Tickets start at $15.

For more details, visit www.usbankstadium.com

About Larry Fitzgerald

Larry Fitzgerald is a longstanding contributing columnist at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder. He can be heard weekday mornings on KMOJ Radio 89.9 FM at 8:25 am, on WDGY-AM 740 Monday and Friday at 9:10 am, and at www.Gamedaygold.com. He also commentates on sports 7-8 pm on Almanac (TPT channel 2). Follow him on Twitter at FitzBeatSr. Larry welcomes reader responses to info@larry-fitzgerald.com, or visit www.Larry-Fitzgerald.com.

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