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USF Basketball To Play Kentucky In 2015

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The Bulls will face Kentucky in a neutral-site game at American Airlines Arena in Miami.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

According to an ESPN report, USF men's basketball will face national power Kentucky, in Miami on November 27, 2015.

Per this article by ESPN's Jeff Goodman, the Basketball Hall of Fame is scheduling a second pre-season event, to go along side the well-known Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament. The event in Miami will be a double-header, with the other game being Memphis-Ohio State.

Details are sparse at this point. The Goodman article says "The format of the event is that each host school will play three home games in addition to one neutral site contest. The ESPN article doesn't expand on that, but our Ohio State sister site Land Grant Holy Land says "expect a trio of mid-to-low majors that'll rotate amongst the four programs." In other words: three of USF's usual lower-tier non-conference home games will be branded as part this event, with those teams also traveling to some combination of Ohio State, Memphis, and Kentucky.

USF has participated in similar events recently. In 2011-12, games against Vermont and Marist were technically part of the Naismith Tournament in Uncasville, Connecticut. The year before that, games at the Sun Dome against Liberty and Georgia Southern were technically part of the South Padre Invitational, where USF played BYU and Jimmer Fredette in Texas.

The article also says "It will be scheduled as two separate events in order for South Florida and Memphis -- which are both in the AAC -- to participate." I'm not sure why this needs to be pointed out, when USF and Memphis aren't slated to play each other at any point of this tournament.

But the big enchilada here is getting to play Kentucky, and in a favorable location to boot. No word on if Orlando Antigua's ties to the Kentucky staff were a factor in getting this scheduled, but they can't have hurt.

USF has never played Kentucky in men's basketball.

Finally, it should be noted that November 27, 2015 is the Friday after Thanksgiving, which so far has been the date of our annual AAC football game with Central Florida. I imagine USF (and the conference) would prefer that these two events not conflict with each other.