Even though basketball season is still about five months away, we found out a little more about some of the opponents that we can expect in the Spectrum this coming year. Thanks to ProvoAggie at USUFans.com, we have learned the field for the 2012-13 World Vision Classic (Gossner Classic). The three opponents this year are Southern Illinois, UC-Davis, and Nicholls State.
When I first heard that Southern Illinois would be heading to town I was very excited to be bringing in one of the elite mid-major basketball programs in the country. Then I consulted RPIForecast.com and realized that SIU is no longer the team that I remembered them to be.
Let’s take a look at all three teams:
Historical record against Utah State: N/A
2011-12 Record: 10-20 (6-10 in conference)
2011-12 RPI: 298
Barring an unforeseen disaster, I think it’s safe to assume that the Aggies will continue their string of undefeated dominance in the Gossner Classic and add yet another trophy to the trophy case.
The Southern Illinoisan has a write-up with some quotes from the SIU Associate Head Coach Tom Hankins.
“It’s a great crowd. Their home record over the last six years, I’m sure, is above 80 percent at home, so it’s a really good home-court,” Hankins said. “It’s a mid-major program that is one of the top ones in the country, and not a whole lot of people know about it.”
Some kind words for sure. Unfortunately for Tom he was slightly off. The Aggies are actually 98-7 over the last six years giving them a winning percentage of .933.
Here’s one more quote from Hankins about the advantage of playing in a round-robin type tournament:
“When you play a conference tournament, you’re playing three games in three days, so, we’re preparing for that, playing back-to-back,” Hankins said. “You could compare Utah State to a lot of Valley schools. They’re going to finish in the top three in their league every year. They play like Creighton and Northern Iowa. The level of play is a lot like playing a higher-level Valley team.”
History of Aggie-Hosted Tournaments (43-1)
Big Blue Classic (5-1)
Gossner Sponsored Tournaments (38-0)
– Gossner Classic (26-0)
– Duel in the Desert (3-0)
– Basketball Travelers Invitational (3-0)
– World Vision Invitational (3-0)
– Athletes In Action Classic (3-0)