Lorenzo Romar’s Washington Huskies, down to their final five conference games before the Pac-12 tourney in Los Angeles, will take part in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament in Uncasville, CT., Nov. 16-18. The eight-team, two-bracket event will be held at the Mohegan Sun Arena, 70 miles from the Naismith Hall of Fame (Springfield, MA.).
Washington will be grouped with Ohio State of the Big Ten, Seton Hall of the Big East and Rhode Island of the Atlantic 10.
This will mark the third consecutive season that Washington will play in a high-profile, early-season tournament. In November, 2010, the Huskies took part in the Maui Classic in Hawaii along with Connecticut, Kentucky, Michigan State and others.
In December, the Huskies played two games at Madison Square Garden in New York City, against Marquette in the Jimmy V Classic and Duke in the Carquest Classic. Both Marquette and Duke are nationally ranked.
“(UW assistant) Coach Jim Shaw has done a great job of trying to get us in one of the premier tournaments every year,” said Romar. “And this certainly falls into that category. We are privileged and honored to be selected as a participant in the Hall of Fame Tournament.
“The New York experience (in December) was great — we got to do a lot of things away from basketball. Now, to be able to see and experience the Naismith Hall of Fame is something that may be our players’ only opportunity to ever see it. I’m already excited.”
Washington is 8-3 all-time against Ohio State, including 0-1 on a neutral court and 6-0 in Seattle. The Huskies last played the Buckeyes on Dec. 1, 1972, at Hec Edmundson Pavilion to open the ’72-73 season. UW has never played Seton Hall or Rhode Island.
Washington, Ohio State, Seton Hall and Rhode Island will play in the “Naismith” bracket, while Albany, Loyola (MD.), University of Missouri-Kansas City and Norfolk State will play in the “Springfield” bracket. There won’t be any crossover games between brackets.
The 12,000-seat Mohegan Sun Arena, located in southeast Connecticut, is part of an entertainment complex owned by the Mohegan Tribe. Notable events held in the facility include the 2005 and 2010 WNBA All-Star games and the 2011 WWE SmackDown.
Washington next plays Thursday against Arizona State at Alaska Airlines Arena, and concludes its home schedule Saturday by hosting Arizona. The Huskies (10-3), Pac-12 co-leaders with California, play at Washington State Feb. 25, at USC March 1 and at UCLA March 3.
The Pac-12 tournament opens March 7 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.