Chaminade Univ.'s Tenure As Regular Maui Invitational Host Coming To An End
Chaminade Univ.'s time as the host school for the Maui Invitational basketball tourney is "drawing to a close," according to Brian McInnis of the HONOLULU STAR-ADVERTISER. After this week's tournament, Chaminade "only will appear every other year," a decision announced by tournament operator KemperLesnik in October '16. In the intervening years, Chaminade will play two tournament participants at their own arenas instead of at Lahaina Civic Center. The tournament began in '84, two years after Chaminade "stunned the world by taking down top-ranked Virginia" at Blaisdell Arena. The '18 Maui Invitational field, the first without a D-II team, has been "rolled out as its 'strongest field in history.'" Tournament Chair Dave Odom has said that the change was "made in part to remain competitive with other nonconference exempt tournaments, which have beefed up their fields." TV partner ESPN also "had a say" (HONOLULU STAR-ADVERTISER, 11/20).
LAST RUN: In Anchorage, Beth Bragg noted this week's Great Alaska Shootout will be the 40th and final time the annual tournament is played. Some of Alaska's "first live television broadcasts were of the Shootout, which got its name from CBS broadcaster Billy Packer in the early days of the tournament." The Univ. of Alaska-Anchorage "decided to make this year's tournament the last because of state budget cuts and the proliferation of early season tournaments elsewhere, which made it harder to attract top-tier teams." The tournament will be played tomorrow through Saturday at Alaska Airlines Center (ALASKA DISPATCH NEWS, 11/20).