The participants of the 2020-2021 Gavitt Tipoff Games between Big Ten and Big East foes have been unveiled. According to Adam Zagoria, who writes for the New York Times, Forbes and NJ.com:
Big Ten in the Gavitt Games:— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) May 18, 2020
1 other https://t.co/DSvLvRoFwe
It is not surprising to see the Michigan State Spartans listed here, as all Big Ten schools are contractually obligated to compete in the Gavitt Games at least four times prior to the agreement expiring in 2022. Each Big East school must compete in six of the seven years.
While the Gavitt Games began in 2015, the Spartans did not make their debut until 2019, defeating the then No. 12-ranked Seton Hall Pirates on the road by a final score of 76-73. This means, barring something unexpected happening like this event being canceled due to COVID-19 concerns, we will see MSU play in the Games in both 2021 and 2022 as well to meet the term of the agreement.
There will not be a rematch with Seton Hall this coming season, as the Pirates are on an off-year, along with DePaul and UConn. While MSU’s opponent has not yet been released it will be one of Butler, Creighton, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, St. John’s, Villanova or Xavier. Also per the contract, each Big Ten team gets two home games and two road games. The Spartans played away from the Breslin last season, so it’s quite possible they’ll be hosting their Big East opponent this time around. Of course, MSU could still play on the road and host home games in back-to-back years in 2021 and 2022.
The “other” Big Ten team Zagoria mentioned in his initial tweet is expected to be Illinois.
Sounds like Illinois is the ‘other’ team. Nebraska is not. https://t.co/uKgrsAsL1G— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) May 18, 2020
Last year’s Gavitt Games — which are named in honor of Dave Gavitt, former coach and athletic director for Providence, and the first ever commissioner for the Big East Conference — ran from Monday, Nov. 11 through Friday, Nov. 15. Assuming the season isn’t delayed, we can probably expect a similar mid-November timeline here, with the event kicking off around Monday, Nov. 16.
Michigan State is also expected to face off with the Oakland Grizzlies around that time in a different non-conference game.
Since this is out there: the MSU-Oakland game is at Breslin this year. We’re targeting the Nov. 14-15 weekend pending other events that weekend and subsequent Gavitt Games dates. The game is earlier than in past years based on conference and final exam windows held in December. https://t.co/XyJDZihDkF— Kevin Pauga (@KevinPauga) April 10, 2020