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Syracuse & UConn competing in 2018 2K Sports Classic, per report

We’ll meet every year as long as early season tournaments let us.

NCAA Basketball: Connecticut vs Syracuse Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Syracuse Orange and UConn Huskies are two of four major men’s basketball programs headlining the 2018 2K Sports Classic, according to a report from FanRag’s Jon Rothstein. SU and UConn led the news, clearly, given both program’s histories with one another — as well as the host venue, New York’s Madison Square Garden.

This year, the event features Providence, Virginia Tech, Washington and St. Louis, among others. Syracuse last participated in 2014, but fell to California (they finally got back in this...). The Orange won in 2009 and 2004, and also lost in the final game in 2005.

Since it seems pretty obvious that Syracuse and UConn will match up with one another in the event, it’ll end up being the fourth straight season the two former Big East foes meet since SU departed the league in 2013. Syracuse won the first meeting in the Battle 4 Atlantis, then UConn won last year’s “Tire Pro Classic” (wut) in a hideous slugfest. Syracuse owns a 55-38 all-time advantage over the Huskies.

The teams will reconvene at MSG on December 5 of this year, in the Jimmy V Classic. It seems as long as there are early-season tournaments, these teams will continue to play one another.

One curious note from Rothstein’s announcement that didn’t involve SU was around the other two teams, Oregon and Iowa. The words “national powerhouse” were associated with the Hawkeyes, which should confuse even the most casual college basketball observers. While a capable program, Iowa hasn’t made the Sweet 16 since 1999, and hasn’t seen the Final Four since 1980.

While I could throw some shade at Oregon’s association with that phrase as well (two Final Fours ever, including 2017’s), the Ducks have at least established themselves over the past five years. Oregon has made five straight NCAA Tournaments, with two straight Elite 8 trips and two Pac-12 Tournament championships during that run.

ANYWAY: Looking forward to hating UConn and laughing at its sad lot in conference life once again this December, and again next season too.