UTA men’s basketball to host nationally televised game in 2019-20 season

Junior guard Brian Warren drives toward the basket during the 2019 Sun Belt Conference Men’s Basketball Championship semifinal against Georgia Southern University on March 16 at Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, Louisiana. The UTA men’s basketball team will host a nationally televised game at College Park Center in the 2019-20 season.

The UTA men’s basketball team will host a nationally televised game at College Park Center in the 2019-20 season.

UTA’s Sun Belt Conference matchup against in-state foe Texas State University will be aired on ESPN2. It will be the program’s first-ever regular season game to be broadcast on national television.

The team’s contest against Texas State, previously scheduled for 5 p.m. on Feb. 29, 2020, will now take place at 8 p.m. on Feb. 28, 2020, to accommodate the move to ESPN2.

Jason MacBain, associate athletic director for communications, said ESPN and the Sun Belt Conference have an agreement to broadcast a certain amount of basketball games throughout the season. He said the matchup between UTA and Texas State presented an opportunity for ESPN to showcase a game with possible postseason implications and two teams with high preseason rankings.

In September, UTA was predicted to secure a bid in the 2020 NCAA Tournament by Andy Katz, NCAA.com basketball expert. Katz placed the Mavericks in the No. 15 seed against second-seeded Seton Hall University.

The Mavericks previously had games aired on ESPNU when they played in the 2017 National Invitation Tournament.

“You’ll see a lot of eyeballs on that game. Just having it on ESPN2, just by default, is monumental,” MacBain said. “It gives us the opportunity to showcase the campus, it gives us an opportunity to showcase the arena, and it gives us an opportunity to showcase the city of Arlington and the students.”

UTA will tip off its 2019-20 season against UT-Dallas at 7 p.m. Nov. 5 at College Park Center, before facing the University of Tulsa at 7 p.m. Nov. 9 for the Mavericks’ Homecoming celebration.

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sports-editor.shorthorn@uta.edu

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