An Ohio State-North Carolina game in Chicago has been rumored for months. Now, it’s official.
The Buckeyes and Tar Heels are slated to play at the United Center on Dec. 20 at 1 p.m., CBS Sports announced Wednesday. It’s part of the new CBS Sports Classic that will also feature a Kentucky-UCLA matchup after the first game.
“We're excited to bring these powerhouse programs together for a tremendous early season showcase,” said Dan Weinberg, Senior Vice President, Programming, CBS Sports. “From its debut next season, the CBS Sports Classic will be a marquee event, adding to our already deep college basketball schedule.
The four teams will play in the round-robin event over the next three seasons. On Dec. 19, 2015, Ohio State will play Kentucky at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn along with North Carolina vs. UCLA. The following year – Dec. 17, 2016 at a venue to be determined in Las Vegas – Ohio State plays UCLA and Kentucky plays North Carolina.
“We are excited to be part of the CBS Sports Classic the next three seasons,” Ohio State coach Thad Matta said in a statement. “The four teams competing have a tremendous history of success in college basketball. We have partnered with terrific cities and venues to make this a great experience for our program, our student-athletes and our fans.”
The recent surge in early-season marquee games could signal a dramatic shift in scheduling philosophy for Ohio State. The Dave Gavitt Tipoff Games were announced Monday, an annual event featuring Big Ten-Big East games the first week of the season. The conference already participates in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge each year.