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Courtesy: UTSA Athletics

UTSA to face former Southland Conference foe Nicholls in BracketBusters game on Feb. 23

Courtesy: UTSA Athletics
Release: 02/06/2013
Courtesy UTSA Athletics
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BRISTOL, Conn. — UTSA learned Monday evening that it will host former Southland Conference foe Nicholls in the 11th annual Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters on Saturday, Feb. 23. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. at the Convocation Center.

The Roadrunners will meet the Colonels for the 45th time overall and the ninth as non-conference opponents. UTSA is participating in the BracketBusters for the second consecutive season. The Birds dropped an 82-71 decision at Georgia State in their first appearance on Feb. 18, 2012, in Atlanta, Ga.

Six total Western Athletic Conference (WAC) teams are taking part in the final edition of the BracketBusters event. The league received one of the 13 featured broadcast games, as Denver will travel to Cedar Falls, Iowa, to play Northern Iowa on Feb. 23 on ESPN3.

The other five WAC teams that were not selected to compete in a BracketBusters television game will play non-conference opponents on Saturday, Feb. 23. Those matchups are listed below.

WAC BracketBusters Games — Saturday, Feb. 23 (all times Central)
Nicholls at UTSA, 2 p.m.
Idaho at Idaho State, 3 p.m.
UC Irvine at UT Arlington, 5 p.m.
Texas State at Lamar, 6 p.m.
Denver at Northern Iowa, 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
Illinois State at Utah State, 8 p.m.

The Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters field will feature 13 nationally-televised games across the ESPN family of networks selected from 122 eligible teams. ESPN2 will have a minimum of three BracketBusters games (an additional two games are designated as flex picks for either ESPN or ESPN2 determined approximately one week before the games) and ESPNU and ESPN3 each will host four games.

Friday, Feb. 22 (All times Central)
North Dakota State at Akron, 6 p.m. (ESPN2/WatchESPN)
Stephen F. Austin at Long Beach State, 8 p.m. (ESPNU/WatchESPN)

Saturday, Feb. 23 (all times Central)
Iona at Indiana State, 10 a.m. (ESPNU/WatchESPN)
Eastern Kentucky at Valparaiso, 12 p.m. (ESPNU/WatchESPN)
Canisius at Vermont, 12 p.m. (ESPN3)
Pacific at Western Michigan, 1 p.m. (ESPN3)
Montana at Davidson, 2 p.m. (ESPNU/WatchESPN)
Northwestern State at Niagara, 2 p.m. (ESPN3)
Detroit at Wichita State, 3 p.m. (ESPN or ESPN2/WatchESPN)
#16 Creighton at St. Mary's, 5 p.m. (ESPN or ESPN2/WatchESPN)
South Dakota State at Murray State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2/WatchESPN)
Denver at Northern Iowa, 7 p.m. (ESPN3)
Ohio at Belmont, 9 p.m. (ESPN2/WatchESPN)

The Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters concept, named because of the success of participating teams from these conferences in NCAA Championship play through the years, provides programs with an opportunity to play top non-conference opponents roughly three weeks before Selection Sunday. Each conference selects its participating teams before the season, and the matchups for the event are determined by ESPN in conjunction with the conferences. Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters is an example of ESPN college basketball franchise programming. Others include Rivalry Week, Feast Week Presented by Lowe’s, Holiday Hoops Presented by Kay Jewelers, Bracket Builder Week and Championship Week Presented by Dick’s Sporting Goods.

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