The Eastern Michigan University men’s basketball team opened the inaugural Ice Man Classic Nov. 9 with a 66-52 victory over the Rochester College Warriors. The Eagles then faced a 61-54 loss to the Jacksonville State University Gamecocks Nov. 11.
In addition to the Eagles, Warriors and Gamecocks, there are three other teams participating in the Classic. The Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne Mastodons, University of Texas Pan-American Broncos and the Eastern Illinois University Panthers will all visit the Convocation Center this week.
The Mastodons are coming to Ypsilanti with a 0-1 record. They lost to Auburn University Nov. 9 by a score of 61-50. The Mastodons’ leading scorer as of press date was guard Frank Gaines, who had 32 points in the loss to Auburn.
The Panthers are coming off a 76-53 loss to the Bradley University Braves in their Nov. 9 season opener. Two players, guards Morris Woods and Alex Austin, scored double digits for the Broncos, 14 and 13 respectively.
Continuing the trend of winless visitors are the Broncos, having suffered losses to the University of Iowa Hawkeyes and the aforementioned Bradley Braves. For the Broncos, their two biggest offensive threats thus far are guards Brandon Provost (14.5 points per game average) and Aaron Urbanus (13.5 PPG).
The Classic resumed Nov. 14 when the University of Texas Pan-American Broncos took on the Warriors.
Nov. 16 will feature a doubleheader. The first game begins at 4:30 p.m. when the Mastodons tip off against the Broncos, and the Eagles will face off against the Panthers at 7 p.m.
The Eagles are staying focused on the task at hand.
“Our biggest challenge really is going to be us,” senior guard Derek Thompson said. “How we come out, really. How we come out defensively.”
Nov. 17 and 18 will feature doubleheaders as well. On Nov. 17, the Broncos and Panthers will be facing off at 4:30 p.m. and the Eagles take on IPFW at 7 p.m. The 4:30 p.m. game on Nov. 18 will feature IPFW versus Eastern Illinois, and the Eagles take on Texas Pan-American, at 7 p.m.
To sweeten the deal, EMU will be giving away freebies before the Eagle games all weekend.
On Friday, the first 100 fans receive a $20 gift card to the EMU Locker Room and the first 500 receive food from Buffalo Wild Wings.
On Saturday, the first 500 fans receive a free George Gervin jersey T-shirt and subs from Jimmy John’s. At halftime, the Detroit Pistons Flight Crew will be performing.
On Sunday, Ice Man Classic Hoodies will be given to the first 100 fans and a personal pizza for each of the first 500 fans.
As always, EMU students can attend the Eagle games for free with a valid student ID.
Be sure to come to the Convocation Center and support the Eagles as they continue on their 2012 season.