2008 Maui Invitation Bracket Announced

August 5th, 2008

MAUI, Hawaii, Aug. 5, 2008 – The EA SPORTS Maui Invitational today announced the official bracket for the 2008 edition of the nation’s premier early-season college basketball tournament. Marking its milestone 25th year, the eight-team competition will return to Maui’s ocean-front Lahaina Civic Center Nov.24-26.


Battling this year for the coveted Wayne Duke Championship Trophy, will be North Carolina, Notre Dame, Texas, Indiana, Oregon, Saint Joseph’s, Alabama and host Chaminade. Six of the seven Division I teams in the 2008 lineup participated in the 2008 NCAA Tournament, highlighted by North Carolina’s Final Four appearance and Texas’ run to the Elite Eight. The field also includes three former national champions – North Carolina, Indiana and Oregon – with 10 NCAA titles between them.


The ESPN networks will combine once again to offer live television coverage of all 12 tournament games. In addition, ESPN360.com will provide live simulcasts of the games televised on ESPN and ESPN2.


“Throughout its history the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational has become synonymous with the kickoff of the college basketball season,” said Tournament Chairman Dave Gavitt. “We look forward to commemorating the tournament’s 25th year with another impressive field vying for Maui glory. Fans from across the nation can look forward to a memorable experience, on and off the court.”


First-round action tips off Thanksgiving week on Monday, Nov. 24, with Game One featuring Atlantic 10 team and Maui newcomer, Saint Joseph’s, led by coach Phil Martelli, against 2008 Elite Eight participant and three-time Maui team, Texas, under head coach Rick Barnes. The winner of this game will take on the winner of Game Two, pitting in-state rivals for battle as five-time national champion and 2002 Maui champ, Indiana, guided by new coach Tom Crean, will face head coach Mike Brey and Notre Dame, a growing BIG EAST force returning for a second appearance at the Lahaina Civic Center. Four-time national champion and two-time Maui titleholder, North Carolina, will hit the hardwood in Game Three, as Hall of Famer Roy Williams pilots his highly touted Tar Heels in a contest with 2008 PacWest Conference champion and tournament host Chaminade, which pulled off an upset over Princeton in Maui last year. The winner of that game will square off with the winner of Game Four, which pairs two teams making their Maui debut: head coach Ernie Kent will call the shots when former national champion and 2007 Pac-10 Conference titleholder, Oregon, plays against the Crimson Tide of Alabama, a Mark Gottfried-led team looking to make its mark in paradise.


The semifinals will take place Tuesday, Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Eastern time on ESPN, with the winners advancing to the championship game Wednesday, Nov. 26 at 10 p.m. Eastern (also on ESPN).