FGCU's 'Dunk City' reuniting for The Basketball Tournament
Watch your head.
Florida Gulf Coast's 2013 Sweet Sixteen team, best remembered as 'Dunk City,' will reunite this summer at The Basketball Tournament. The fifteenth-seeded Eagles team that took March by storm, memorably knocking off Georgetown and San Diego State with a fast-paced attack and aerial flair will again lay it on the line, this time in pursuit of a $1 million, winner-take-all grand prize.
The tournament, now in its second year, continues to grow and add talent to its ranks. Another notable addition to the field is a group of Wisconsin players led by Mike Bruesewitz, Jordan Taylor and Josh Gasser that will look to channel the magic of recent years into a deep run.
Last year, the tournament was won by a group of Notre Dame alumni including Chris Thomas, Tyrone Nash and Rob Kurz. The "Fighting Alumni" will be back, notably adding Tim Abromaitis and Carleton Scott to the roster. They'll be challenged to repeat, as the competition has grown much deeper, with a field shaping up to be extremely exciting for college basketball die-hards.
Another team generating some buzz brings a Syracuse lineup including Hakim Warrick, Eric Devendorf, Donte Greene and Rick Jackson. The ex-Orangemen were the first team to secure enough fan support to qualify for the field. And rumor has it that arch-rival UConn is assembling players to compete with them.
Not every team is built around an alumni base: confirmed individuals whom hoop nerds might remember include Jamario Moon, Pops Mensah-Bonsu, Ike Diogu and Pooh Jeter. Former Kansas and Seton Hall stars Josh Selby and Aquille Carr are back and co-headline a team. Villanova's Reggie Redding and Antonio Pena also return. Ex-Indiana Hoosiers Will Sheehey and Jordan Hulls will be joined by former Arizona guard Mark Lyons on a team. A trio of Georgetown Hoyas, Chris Wright, Austin Freeman and Jason Clark, will compete together. A Xavier alumni team including fan favorite Matt Stainbrook has signed up.
Remember last year's lovable Eberlein Drive team? They've added former NBA player Von Wafer.
Other noteworthy squads include the 2010 Cornell Sweet Sixteen team (Jeff Foote, Ryan Wittman), La Salle's 2013 Sweet Sixteen team (Ramon Galloway, Jerell Wright), San Diego State's 2011 Sweet Sixteen Team (with Malcolm Thomas, Xavier Thames and Chase Tapley; minus newly-crowned Defensive Player of the year Kawhi Leonard, of course) and the Temple team they beat in the Round of 32 that season (Rahlil Hollis-Jefferson, Khalif Wyatt). Add teams with former stars from Virginia, St. Louis, Oklahoma, Colorado, Air Force, Vanderbilt, Indiana and Drexel to the list.
Registration is still fluid and open until June 1. Keep an eye on the tournament's official website to track ongoing sign-ups and team-ups.
The Basketball Tournament begins in July, with regionals in Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Atlanta. The Final Four will be broadcast by ESPN on August 1st and 2nd. Odds are you'll recognize some of the faces.