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WCC, Saint Mary's To Be Featured On ESPN's <i>College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon</i>

Sept. 24, 2008

BRISTOL, Conn. - The West Coast Conference and Saint Mary's College will be represented in ESPN's College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon, featuring 23 consecutive hours of live college basketball game and studio programming on Tuesday, Nov. 18. The new event is a creative way to celebrate the opening of the 2008-09 college basketball season and will feature Saint Mary's hosting Fresno State at McKeon Pavilion at 11:00 p.m. PT.

This is another collaboration between the West Coast Conference and ESPN, which is the exclusive national broadcast provider of WCC men's basketball. The Fresno State at Saint Mary's game is the first of at least 19 WCC games that ESPN will broadcast on its family of networks.

It will begin at midnight ET with a tripleheader of live games: Massachusetts at Memphis followed by Fresno State at Saint Mary's at 2 a.m. and Idaho State at Hawaii at 4 a.m. Coverage will conclude with Kentucky at North Carolina at 9 p.m.

ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will offer 33 total hours of coverage overall highlighted by 14 game telecasts, including defending National Champion Kansas on ESPNU at 9 p.m. ESPN360.com will offer a simulcast of every ESPN and ESPN2 telecast.

ESPN's College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon highlights include:

  • The first of ESPN's nine game telecasts will feature current Memphis coach John Calipari, a participant in last year's NCAA Tournament Championship game, against Massachusetts, where he coached from 1988-96 and led the Minutemen to their only NCAA Final Four appearance.

  • ESPN will then travel to Moraga, California as the Saint Mary's Gaels, a 2008 NCAA Tournament at-large team that went 25-7 last year, host the Fresno State Bulldogs in a game tipping off at 11:00 p.m. PT, 2:00 a.m. ET.

  • ESPN's coverage will conclude at 9 p.m. with a showdown between the two winningest teams in college basketball history when Kentucky visits North Carolina, which returns all five starters -- including National Player of the Year Tyler Hansbrough - to a team that made it to last year's Final Four.

  • College GameDay will originate from Chapel Hill, N.C., site of Kentucky at North Carolina (televised on ESPN at 9 p.m.), for a one-hour show at 8 p.m.

  • In addition to games at midnight, 2 a.m., 4 a.m. and 9 p.m., ESPN will televise five live games consecutively beginning at 10 a.m.

  • ESPN's coverage will include a game played in five different United States time zones -- Eastern, Central, Mountain, Pacific and Hawaiian - and at least 14 different conferences (Big Ten, Big 12, BIG EAST, SEC, ACC, Atlantic 10, Conference USA, WAC, WCC, Big Sky, Ivy, Colonial, Big South and Summit).

  • ESPN's 2 p.m. telecast will feature Iowa at Kansas in a women's matchup.

  • Coverage will include the College Hoops Tip-Off Special, a live four-hour studio show originating from ESPN's studios in Charlotte, N.C., beginning at 6 a.m.

  • In addition to the College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon coverage on ESPN, ESPN2 will televise a tripleheader of 2008 NIT Season Tip-Off matchups beginning at 7:30 p.m. ESPNU will offer a doubleheader beginning with a NIT Season Tip-Off game at 7 p.m. followed by a CBE Classic game at 9 p.m. featuring defending National Champion Kansas.

    College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon Schedule for ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU
    Tue., Nov. 18 midnight ESPN/ESPN360.com Massachusetts at Memphis 2 a.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Fresno State at Saint Mary's 4 a.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Idaho State at Hawaii 6 a.m. ESPN College Hoops Tip-Off Special 10 a.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Penn at Drexel noon ESPN/ESPN360.com Liberty at UNC-Asheville 2 p.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Iowa at Kansas (women) 4 p.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Centenary at Baylor 6 p.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com CBE Classic: Richmond at Syracuse 7 p.m. ESPNU NIT Regional Final (from Purdue) 7:30 p.m. ESPN2/ESPN360.com NIT Regional Final (from Boston College) 8 p.m. ESPN College GameDay (from Chapel Hill) 9 p.m. ESPN/ESPN360.com Kentucky at North Carolina 9 p.m. ESPNU CBE Classic: Florida Gulf Coast at Kansas 9:30 p.m. ESPN2/ESPN360.com NIT Regional Final (from Oklahoma) 11:30 p.m. ESPN2/ESPN360.com NIT Regional Final (from Arizona)