Cleanthony Early, Toure' Murry, Tekele Cotton and Conner Frankamp are among former Wichita State stars who will return to Wichita this summer to compete in The Basketball Tournament, a single-elimination summer event that pays the winning team $2 million in prize money and is broadcast live by ESPN.
The Basketball Tournament announced Tuesday that Wichita would be one of eight regional sites for this year's sixth annual showcase. As part of the tournament, a team comprised of former WSU Shockers called The AfterShocks received automatic entry into the 64-team field.
“The Basketball Tournament keeps getting bigger and better every year," Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall said in a news release distributed by Visit Wichita. "To be selected as regional host speaks to Wichita’s reputation as a basketball hotbed. This will be a treat for all of us. I’m especially looking forward to watching our all-star team of former Shockers in action. I hope Shocker Nation will join me in supporting them and the TBT this July at Charles Koch Arena.”
Games will be played Thursday, July 25, through Sunday, July 28, at Wichita State's Koch Arena. First-round games will take place Thursday and Friday, with two games each night. The regional semifinals will be played Saturday with the regional title game to follow on Sunday.
The AfterShocks will play on Thursday night.
The AfterShocks roster features ex-WSU players Early (2012-14), Murry (2008-12), Cotton (2011-15), Frankamp (2015-18), Joe Ragland (2010-12), Malcolm Armstead (2011-13), Clevin Hannah (2008-10), Shaquille Morris (2013-18), J.T. Durley (2006-11) and Garrett Stutz (2008-12). Karon Bradley (2004-07) is head coach of the AfterShocks and is assisted by John Robert Simon (2013-17) and Zach Bush (2012-17).
Wichita, which was selected as a tournament host for the first time since the event was founded in 2014, beat out a number of cities vying to bring the tournament to their communities.
Other regional sites selected were Columbus, Ohio; Lexington, Ky.; Greensboro, N.C.; Memphis, Tenn.; Salt Lake City; Syracuse, N.Y., and Richmond, Va.
“The Basketball Tournament has grown into a summer staple in an incredibly short amount of time, given the typical developmental runway for a sports property,” said Jon Mugar, founder and CEO of TBT. “This year’s decision, as in past years, was difficult to make as we received interest from so many great cities that wanted to bring TBT to their communities. We’re excited by this year’s lineup of host venues, and confident the arenas will be filled with passionate fans to supply the incredible atmosphere that’s become synonymous with TBT over the years.”
TBT features 64 teams comprised of former and future NBA players, international stars, college alumni teams and more. They compete in a single-elimination, five-on-five tournament for the $2 million winner-take-all prize.
Overseas Elite, a team of American stars playing in top leagues around the world, won the championship for a fourth consecutive year in 2018 and will be back to defend its title. Key players for the Overseas Elite have included DeJuan Blair, D.J. Kennedy, Errick McCollum, DeAndre Kane and Kyle Fogg.
Games will air on ESPN networks beginning Friday, July 19.
For all session tickets, visit www.goshockers.com or call the WSU Ticket Office at 316-978-3267.