Hello and welcome back for Day 2 of the 2020 iteration of The Basketball Tournament! Did everyone have fun yesterday? With the conclusion of the final game of the day on Saturday, we know that Team CP3 will be facing off against the Marquette alumni tomorrow night. That’s tomorrow, though, and we still have four games of action today to finish out the first round of the tournament.
The first game of the day is a hoot, as it features #10 Peoria All-Stars vs #23 Herd That. The reason why it is a hoot is because the All-Stars are not supposed to be here. They replaced Playing For Jimmy V on July 3rd because one of their guys tested positive for COVID-19. That’s still not the hoot part, because Playing For Jimmy V replaced Best Virginia back on June 22nd for the exact same reason. Peoria is the second of three replacement squads that TBT brought in for exactly this reason, so let’s all hope this goes off without any further hitches.
This is the fourth straight TBT for Peoria All-Stars, so they’re very familiar with the format and the intensity necessary to get the win. None of the names on the roster jump off the page at you, but Koch Bar is a fun name to read. Herd That is the Marshall alumni team, and that’s a pretty great team name. Jon Elmore is the big name there after starting for four seasons at Marshall and averaging 19.8 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 5.9 assists per game.
Up next is Team Hines and Sideline Cancer. The Marquette guys beat Team Hines in the semifinals last year, but this seems like it’s a different collection of guys this time around. Brandon Paul was playing for San Antonio Spurs in 2017-18, so he seems like he’s going to be the best guy on the roster here. Gilbert Brown was a quality dude for Pittsburgh back in the day, and Alec Peters was a star at Valparaiso. Also on the roster: Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ, but he was supposed to play for Kohl Blooded last season and just did not show up. We’ll see what happens. Sideline Cancer reached the regional finals last season before being knocked off by....... SURPRISE, the Marquette alumni. Former Maryland Terrapin Diamond Stone is on the roster here, as is a couple of familiar names in Remy Abell and Maurice Creek. If everyone on the rosters shows up for this game, then this might be the biggest name power game of the opening round.
Heartfire is led by former Texas A&M head coach Billy Kennedy as a way of shining a light on HeartFire Missions. According to the TBT website, that group “trains and equips world-changers to bring hope to a desperate world through global medical, surgical & humanitarian relief.” As you might expect, there is a Christian side of the whole deal there. They’ve got some dudes, with Isaiah Austin, Branden Dawson, and Jordan Adams as the names of note. They’re the #14 seed, giving them a teeny tiny seeded edge on #19 Men of Mackey, which is the Purdue alumni team. They play in Mackey Arena, get it? Isaac Haas the the literal biggest name on their roster, measuring up at 7’3”. We’ll see if he’s able to make an impact on this game, as TBT contests tend to be a bit more up and down and can end up taking away the advantages of a big guy.
The final game of the day features #15 Armored Athlete, a TBT regular, going up against #19 Power of the Paw, which is a Clemson alumni team. Iona’s Scott Machado appears to be the biggest name on the roster for AA, but again, this program has been in TBT on the regular before, so they know the deal. This is the second straight TBT for the Clemson dudes, who have Tevin Mack and Donte Grantham on their roster. They’ve got Josh Akognon aboard as well, and he averaged over 20 points a game in two seasons at Cal State Fullerton, so he can go.
The Basketball Tournament 2020 Day 2
All times Central.
1pm: #10 Peoria All-Stars vs #23 Herd That
3pm: #11 Team Hines vs #22 Sideline Cancer
6pm: #14 Heartfire vs #19 Men of Mackey
8pm: #15 Armored Athlete vs #18 Power of the Paw