Oregon to Host America's Youth Classic Nov. 15-17 at Mac Court

June 26, 2001

EUGENE -- The University of Oregon has been selected to host the 2001 America's Youth Classic men's basketball tournament, the University announced Tuesday. Oregon will join Alabama State, Long Beach State and Western Michigan in the three-day event that will be held Nov. 15-17 at McArthur Court.

'Because of the reputation of Mac Court having an excellent basketball atmosphere, the people who sponsor this tournament approached us about our interest in hosting this event,' said Oregon head coach Ernie Kent. 'That's a tremendous compliment to this community, to this University and to Mac Court. There are a limited number of exempt tournaments available and we are very fortunate to be able to host the America's Youth Classic.'

The tournament will be a round-robin format, with a champion determined by the best overall record. Oregon will open the tournament playing Alabama State on Thursday, Nov. 15, while Long Beach State and Western Michigan will meet in the other game. Friday's pairings will be Oregon-Western Michigan and Alabama State-Long Beach State. The event closes Saturday with Oregon-Long Beach State and Alabama State-Western Michigan.

Proceeds from the America's Youth Classic will benefit the Eddie Robinson Foundation. Founded by the former Grambling State Hall of Fame football coach in 1997, the goal of the Eddie Robinson Foundation is to 'serve as a catalyst for the fulfillment of the hopes and dreams of the youth of America,' the Foundation says in its mission statement. 'Through merit and need-based scholarships, grants, and charitable contributions, the Foundation will create better citizens for America by providing promising youth an opportunity to excel in the most competitive society in the world.'

Specifically, the Foundation assists high school seniors realizing the goal of a college education and fosters the potential of the eighth grade students to achieve a college education by granting opportunities for participation in academic and athletic encampments.

'Our fans are some of the most knowledgeable and appreciative in the country,' said Kent. 'And I'm very pleased to give them the opportunity to get behind and support the Eddie Robinson Foundation. Any time you get a chance to be associated with a legend like Eddie Robinson, it's an honor and I know our fan support for the America's Youth Classic will be tremendous.'

The tournament has been granted exempt status by the NCAA, meaning that the three games will only count as one against each team's alloted 28 regular season games. Vanderbilt was the host of the 2000 America's Youth Classic.


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