BREAKING: Preseason title contenders UCLA and Gonzaga have agreed to a rematch of their epic Final Four battle and will play each other in a four-team MTE this November at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena, sources tell @CBSSports. A huge game for CBB. Details: https://t.co/Nkt6XQsTTg— Matt Norlander (@MattNorlander) July 22, 2021
As we all remember, the Zags downed the Bruins in the Final Four last season in one of the best NCAA Tournament games of all time. Almost immediately, there was a clamoring for one more game, and we finally have the date.
Gonzaga and UCLA will partake in a multi-team event with Bellarmine and Central Michigan at the Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena on Nov. 22 and 23. Gonzaga and UCLA will play on the 23rd, and Gonzaga will face Central Michigan on the 22nd.
The news means definitively that the Zags are no longer playing in the Empire Classic thanks to a contract that allowed the schools to walk away from the tournament after the venues pitched ended up not being the venues played at. The Empire Classic was originally scheduled for Madison Square Garden but was moved to the Prudential Center in New Jersey.
UCLA is projected to be a preseason top-five team and this game very well could be the premier non-conference game of all of college basketball. Gonzaga, as it normally does, has established a who’s who of opponents for the non-conference. In addition to UCLA, the Zags will also play Duke in Las Vegas, Alabama in Seattle, Texas Tech in Phoenix, and Texas at home.