NICEVILLE, FLA. — Tickets for the eighth annual Emerald Coast Classic college basketball tournament, presented by Global Sports, will go on sale at 11 a.m. Central time this Tuesday (Sept. 6) on the official tournament website www.emeraldcoastclassic.com
Tickets start at $20 per session with each session having two games.
The Emerald Coast Classic will be played Thanksgiving weekend Nov. 25-26 at The Arena on the campus of Northwest Florida State College.
Iowa will face Clemson in a semifinal round game at 6 p.m. central time on Friday, Nov. 25, while TCU will play Cal at 8:30 p.m. The third-place game will be played at 3 p.m. on Saturday Nov. 26 with the championship game scheduled for a 6 p.m. tip off on that Saturday.
Both Iowa and TCU played in the 2022 NCAA Tournament with the Horned Frogs beating Seton Hall, 69-42, in the first round. TCU fell to top-seeded Arizona, 85-80, in overtime in the second round.
Iowa captured the 2022 Big Ten Conference Tournament championship, tied for fourth in the conference standings and won 26 overall games, the second most wins in a season in program history.
Fran McCaffery has coached Iowa to 20-plus wins eight of the last 10 seasons, including four straight years. The Hawkeyes have competed in the last three NCAA Tournaments and have been ranked in the final Associated Press Poll each of the last three years: No. 16 in 2020, No. 8 in 2021 and No. 25 in 2022.
The Horned Frogs’ second NCAA Tournament bid under coach Jamie Dixon was their fourth postseason appearance in the five seasons that postseason was held, the best in program history.
TCU has all five starters returning from its 2021-22 team which finished 21-13, its fourth 20-win season in six years under Dixon with a program-record five wins over AP Top 25 teams. TCU surged late with consecutive victories over top-10 opponents in Texas Tech and Kansas to secure a NCAA Tournament berth.
Returning starting forwards Hunter Tyson and PJ Hall will key the fortunes for Clemson, which won five of its last six games to close out the 2021-22 campaign. Brad Brownell is the winningest coach in Clemson history, earning 218 victories in 12 years while guiding the Tigers to the 2021 NCAA Tournament, 2018 Sweet 16, 2011 NCAA Tournament and three NIT appearances.
Mark Fox will enter his fourth season as the head men’s basketball coach at Cal and has averaged nearly 19 wins each year in his 17-year coaching career. In previous stops at Nevada and Georgia, Fox has guided teams to five appearances in the NCAA Tournament. Cal boasts 28 postseason appearances, including 19 NCAA Tournament appearances.
Other games at Northwest Florida State College on Friday Nov. 25 have Southern playing Loyola Maryland at 11 am while Louisiana Monroe meets Omaha at 1:30 p.m.