Carrier Classic: UNC-Michigan State
College basketball tipped off its 2011-12 season and saluted the troops on Veterans Day with Friday's Carrier Classic aboard the USS Carl Vinson. No. 1 North Carolina and Michigan State squared off aboard the ship docked in Coronado, Calif. with the Tar Heels pulling off a 67-55 victory. The game was played aboard the historic naval vessel, which is best known for burying Osama bin Laden at sea and being an instrumental tool in the war against terror. In addition to 7,000 fans and troops in attendance, President Barack Obama was also at the game and addressed the crowd before tip-off, honoring veterans who have protected the United States over the years. Click through our gallery to check out more photos from the Carrier Classic.
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama salute troops and walk onto the court prior to tip-off. Obama later addressed the crowd, thanking veterans and current soldiers for their service.
An aerial shot of the USS Carl Vinson before Friday night's Carrier Classic.
Sailors stand courtside before Friday night's game at the USS Carl Vinson, which had a basketball court and stands specially constructed for the event.
Michigan State legend Magic Johnson (left) jokes with President Barack Obama before Friday's tip-off.
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama sit courtside during the Carrier Classic.
Michigan State legend Magic Johnson poses for photos before Friday's game.
North Carolina forward John Henson (31) fights for a rebound with Michigan State center Adreian Payne (5) and forward Branden Dawson (22) during the first half. Henson finished with 12 points and a career-high nine blocks.
North Carolina big man Tyler Zeller posts up during the first half of Friday's Carrier Classic. Zeller chipped in nine points and six rebounds for the Heels.
North Carolina's Harrison Barnes raises up for a bucket against Michigan State's big men. The blue-chipper led all scorers with 17.
Michigan State guard Brandon Wood attempts a 3-pointer against North Carolina. The senior scored seven points, including one trey ball.
North Carolina forward John Henson soars for a breakaway dunk during Friday's Carrier Classic.
With the sun going down, a look from above at the USS Carl Vinson under the lights.
North Carolina's James McAdoo deflects a shot by Michigan State's Brandon Wood in the second half. McAdoo had four points and four rebounds off the bench.
Michigan State center Adreian Payne receives a pass in the post against North Carolina. The big man totaled nine points and three rebounds in the losing effort.
Michigan State guard Brandon Wood attempts a floater over North Carolina forward John Henson in the second half.
North Carolina guard Dexter Strickland drives to the hoop against the Spartans' defense. Strickland helped orchestrate UNC's offense, which shot 48 percent from the field. He finished with 10 points and five assists.
Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo stands up and directs orders during the second half Friday.
A dark sky hovers over the USS Carl Vinson during Friday's Carrier Classic.
Tar Heels big man Tyler Zeller protects the ball in the post during the second half Friday.
Michigan State center Adreian Payne has his shot rejected by UNC's John Henson -- one of his nine blocks -- in the second half.