While the four teams selected to play in this upcoming season’s Legends Classic semifinals at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York (Arizona State, LSU, Marquette and NC State) have been known for quite some time, the regional round matchups for the event had yet to be announced. That changed Thursday, as the Gazelle Group released the matchups for those games.
Each of the four teams that will make their way to Brooklyn for games November 23-24 will have two home games to play in the regional round. Those opponents will come from a four-team pool of Belmont, IUPUI, Kennesaw State and South Alabama, with those teams being selected well in advance of today’s announcement.
There will be a separate four-team event hosted by Kennesaw State November 23-24, and as is the case with the semifinal round in Brooklyn those games will be announced at a later date. Below are the regional round matchups.
Milwaukee Regional (hosted by Marquette)
November 13: Belmont at Marquette
November 16: IUPUI at Marquette
Raleigh Regional (hosted by NC State)
November 15: South Alabama at NC State
November 18: IUPUI at NC State
Baton Rouge Regional (hosted by LSU)
November 16: Kennesaw State at LSU
November 19: South Alabama at LSU
Tempe Regional (hosted by Arizona State)
November 16: Belmont at Arizona State
November 19: Kennesaw State at Arizona State
Arkansas added some interior depth for next season late this week as Kennesaw State big man Willy Kouassi announced that he would finish his college basketball career with the Razorbacks.
The 6-foot-10 Kouassi announced his decision on Twitter:
A native of the Ivory Coast, Kouassi should be able to help Arkansas as a rebounder and interior defender after the team lost sophomore Bobby Portis to the 2015 NBA Draft. In 19.6 minutes per contest last season, Kouassi averaged 4.6 points and 5 rebounds per game while also registering 1.3 blocks per night. Although limited offensively, Kouassi shot 46 percent from the field on the season.
A former four-star recruit out of high school, Kouassi was rated as the No. 66 overall prospect in Rivals‘ Class of 2011 national rankings and committed to Auburn out of high school. In one year with the Tigers, Kouassi averaged 1.6 points and 2.6 rebounds per contest in a little over 10 minutes a game.
The addition of Kouassi should give the Razorbacks more interior depth and a big man with some SEC experience under his belt.
Al Skinner has been hired by Kennesaw State, Doug Roberson of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported on Sunday afternoon.
Skinner, who has served as an assistant coach at Bryant since 2013, spent 13 seasons as the head coach at Boston College, winning 247 games and taking the Eagles to the NCAA tournament seven times. He made two previous trips to the tournament at Rhode Island, where he spent nine years.
While Skinner has a successful track record as a coach, it all came in the northeast, beginning his career as an assistant at Marist before stops at URI, BC and most recently, Bryant. His first priority will be to retain or hire assistants with ties to the Atlanta area.
There are connections between Skinner and Kennesaw State athletic director Vaughn Williams. The two both attended UMass, although their times in Amherst were separated by several decades. Williams went on to receive a Master’s Degree from Boston College in 2002, Skinner’s fifth year at Chestnut Hill.
Skinner will become the third coach the Kennesaw State program has had since 2013. Lewis Preston, who took a leave of absence during the 2013-14 season, was relieved of his duties in March 2014. Jimmy Lallathin was let go last month, after his first season as head coach.
He will be taking over a team that went 10-22 (4-10 Atlantic Sun) this past season, finishing second-to-last in the conference. The Owls program has lost 20 or more games in each of the last six seasons.