Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun
Friday, May 3, 2013 | 11:42 a.m.
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UNLV basketball knows it’s staying home for the Christmas holiday, and now it’s just waiting to see exactly who it will play.
The Rebels headline the field for the 13th annual Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic, which will be played Dec. 22-23 at Orleans Arena. The other teams in their bracket are Mississippi State, Santa Clara and South Florida. UNLV will play two of those teams at Orleans, plus earlier home nonconference games against two of the following three teams: Radford, Sacred Heart and Florida A&M.
"We are excited to again be involved in a holiday tournament in Las Vegas," UNLV coach Dave Rice said in a press release. "We are always looking for opportunitties to play games in front of our fans."
UNLV’s full nonconference schedule is expected to be finished in the coming weeks. Other games already announced are at home against Illinois on Tuesday, Nov. 26 and at Arizona on Saturday, Dec. 7.
Past champions include Colorado State (2012), Baylor (2011), New Mexico (2010) and BYU (2009). Similar tournaments UNLV has played in the past two years are the Global Sports Classic at the Thomas & Mack Center last season and the Las Vegas Invitational at Orleans Arena in 2011.
It’s broken up into two groups of four and every team gets four total games. The first two are at campus sites, with the Rebels’ group hosting all of those games. Florida Gulf Coast, the darlings of the 2013 NCAA Tournament, is the only school to announce its full schedule. The Eagles will play at South Florida on Dec. 17 and at Mississippi State on Dec. 19, meaning Dunk City won’t meet the Rebels on the court.
The last two games are played on back-to-back days at Orleans, with the first game winners meeting after the losers’ games. Tickets for the tournament go on sale at noon Friday through the Orleans Arena box office.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story misidentified the name of the event. | (May 3, 2013)