Georgetown won't be participating in Nike's big PK80 tournament in November after all
The Hoyas now have a spate of dates to fill on their schedule
Georgetown has announced an unexpected update to its 2017-18 schedule: The Hoyas have voluntarily removed themselves from the most anticipated -- and loaded --regular-season event this upcoming season. Georgetown will no longer be participating in the PK80, being held in Portland the weekend of Thanksgiving in celebration of Nike founder Phil Knight and his impending 80th birthday.
The Hoyas, now coached by their most famous alum, Patrick Ewing, were scheduled to face Michigan State (a ), then play either Oregon or UConn the day after. Instead, they're out and Big East brethren DePaul -- also a Nike school, as is every team competing in the PK80 -- is in.
"The Georgetown's men's basketball program is in the midst of an exciting time of rebuilding," athletic director Lee Reed said in a statement. "Georgetown has a prominent, seasoned head coach who has begun this process, which will continue to develop in the fall. After considerable consultation with ESPN, we have reached a mutual agreement that Georgetown will not participate in the PK80 Phil Knight Invitational this November. The University values its longstanding partnership with ESPN and looks forward to participating in future events. We appreciate the understanding of the fans and organizations associated with this event and wish success to all involved."
This is, in fact, Ewing's first endeavor at any level as a head coach. Georgetown is being replaced by DePaul, which last made the NCAA Tournament in 2004 and is coming off consecutive nine-win seasons.
And it's not as though Georgetown can try again for inclusion come 2018 or 2019. The PK80 has been billed as a one-time-only event. Duke, North Carolina, Michigan State, Florida, Gonzaga, Ohio State -- major college hoops programs -- are participating in this because it is a unique experience. Normally those schools are rotating between the three or four other high-profile November tournaments. The PK 80 will be played Nov. 23, 24 and 26.
All of this now brings more intrigue (and inevitable attention) to what Georgetown's schedule will look like. The Hoyas are yet to unveil their 2017-18 slate, and due to bowing out of the PK80, they're going to have to pick up some games. According to Casual Hoya, which diligently covers the program, "as many as nine or 10" opponents are still to be determined. That's an enormous amount of open dates for a Big East program to fill this deep into the offseason.
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