The summer months can be grueling for basketball fans, with no live action set to resume until Thanksgiving merchandise is back on store shelves. The Basketball Tournament makes its return for a fourth year to fill that void in the dog days of summer, and with it comes the return of Few Good Men which made it to the Super 16 in last year’s event.
TBT will feature 64 teams assigned to four regional brackets. The teams will play 5-on-5 in a single elimination format vying for a $2 million winner-take-all prize. Most of you, if not all of you, may have already heard of the squad mostly made up of Gonzaga basketball alums. But if you haven’t, the clever word play of the team name should tip you off.
Former Zags Dan Dickau, Steven Gray, Mike Hart, Jeremy Pargo, and Blake Stepp headline the team. They will be joined by non-Zags Jannero Pargo (Jeremy’s older brother who played in the NBA for over a decade), Malcolm Thomas (former Pepperdine and San Diego State big man), forward Leo Lyons (Mizzou), and Kevin Palmer (Texas A&M-CC). Last year, Few Good Men made some late Gonzaga additions so it’s certainly possible that more Zags will be featured on the lineup as the event draws nearer.
To fill out each region, nine teams will earn automatic bids into the tournament based solely on fan voting. Six more teams will receive “at-large” bids into each region, with each at-large team requiring a minimum of 100 fans and seven players, and the final spot in each region can be claimed by teams in a play-in tournament that will take place in Philadelphia from June 17-18. Accordingly, in order to receive an automatic bid, Few Good Men needs to be one of the top nine teams in the vote standings for the West region by the June 1st deadline. Fans can vote for the team by going to the Few Good Men team page and clicking on the box to become a fan. The team is currently tied for 9th with 748 votes, so make sure to vote before June 1st and ensure the squad receives an automatic bid.
Games will start on July 8, but the West regional won’t tip off until July 15 in Las Vegas. The Super 16 and quarterfinal rounds will then proceed from July 20-23 in New York, and the semifinals and championship will be played on August 1 and 3 respectively in Baltimore.
All TBT games will be on the ESPN family of networks, with the play-in tournament and rounds one and two on WatchESPN. The Super 16 and subsequent rounds will be broadcast on ESPN 2 and ESPN.