Let’s get you caught up on Tampa Bulls and The Basketball Tournament. The roster of former USF basketball players almost made the tournament automatically, just missing out on the top 9 fan votes in the heavily supported South Region. But with their (your) strong fan support and the experience on their roster, the Tampa Bulls had no trouble getting an at-large bid to TBT.
Unlike some teams, who are grouped together by their hometown or just made up of whoever they could get to join them, Tampa Bulls is a 100% USF alumni team. The roster is like a who’s who of USF basketball in this decade.
Did you ever want to see what the 2012 NCAA Tournament team would have looked like with Dominique Jones and Corey Allen, Jr. on it? Well, you’re going to get your chance. They’re both on the team, along with 2012 standouts Anthony Collins, Toarlyn Fitzpatrick, Gus Gilchrist, Ron Anderson Jr., and Hugh Robertson. Also on the roster is Javontae Hawkins, plus Terrence Leather and Will McDonald for veteran leadership.
So, they’re in! First hurdle cleared. Now they just have to win six games to claim the $2 million, winner-take-all prize. The first two games will come the weekend of July 8-9, at Queens University in Charlotte.
Get to the Levine Center early, because Tampa Bulls tip off at 10:45 a.m. against Seven City Grain, a team of players from the southeast Virginia area. Their most recognizable name is probably former Georgia guard Terrance Woodbury.
A win on Saturday advances Tampa Bulls to the second round, where they would play at 11:00 a.m. Sunday against either Kentucky Kings (not a UK alum team - they’re players from Kentucky, lead by Erving Walker and Scotty Hobson) or The Citi Team, who won their way into TBT at a qualifying jamboree.
Lurking in the round of 16, however, is Overseas Elite, the two-time defending champion. TBT has been pitching Tampa Bulls as a darkhorse candidate, so if those two teams meet it could be quite a matchup. (On the other hand, a matchup against the actual Washington Generals would be pretty great.)
We are going to try and get someone up to Charlotte to cover the first two games. You can get tickets here if you’re nearby. The games will also be streaming on ESPN3.