Per Mike Waters, the Syracuse Orange will kick off the 2013 Maui Invitational against the Minnesota Golden Gophers. The game will take place at 5:30 p.m. EST on November 25th on ESPN2. Jim Boeheim will be wearing a Hawaiian shirt and khakis.
Syracuse's last game against Minnesota came in the 1990 NCAA Tournament in New Orleans. The Gophers won the Sweet 16 game.
However, Syracuse fans will recognize the name of Minnesota's coach. Richard Pitino, the son of former SU assistant and current Louisville coach Rick Pitino, will be in his first year at Minnesota. Pitino was the head coach at Florida International last year.
Minny went 21-13 and made it to the "3rd" round of the NCAA Tournament last year. For that terrible effort, the school's fifth 20-win season in six years, Tubby Smith was fired. Minnesota is weird.
The full brackets for the tournament were released Wednesday. The first round will also include the California Golden Bears vs. Arkansas Razorbacks, the Baylor Bears taking on tournament host Chaminade and the Gonzaga Bulldogs against the Dayton Flyers.
In the second-round, Syracuse will face either Cal or Arkansas, which means, officially, that Cal really can get back in this.
SU will play St. Francis in the Dome on November 18th as part of the tournament for some reason as well.
SU is two-for-two in Maui Invitationals, so the bar can't possibly be set higher for this squad. And of course, that also means that these games count as home games. Obviously.
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