Sixteen-Team Nike Event In The Works For 2017

ARRY LAGE,AP Sports Writer

Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis says he expects 24 Nike-backed basketball teams to be in two tournaments in 2017 that will celebrate Phil Knight.

Nike’s billionaire co-founder turns 80 during that season on Feb. 24, 1938.

Hollis told The Associated Press on Thursday that athletic directors at 16 schools have agreed to play in the tournaments. He’s contacting eight more to be involved with the three-game format that will have some schools hosting a game before playing two more matchups near Nike headquarters in Portland, Ore.

Hollis says the Spartans, Duke, North Carolina, Kentucky, Florida, Ohio State, Connecticut, Georgetown, Oklahoma, Texas, Oregon, Stanford, Butler, Xavier, Gonzaga and Portland will participate. He is now working on funding for the event, which was first reported by ESPN.com.

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Follow Larry Lage on Twitter at http://www.Twitter.com/larrylage

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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