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The Basketball Tournament: Omaha Blue Crew

The annual summer “blockbuster” event kicks off with Omaha hosting a region in this year’s tournament

Syndication: Enterprise News Marc Vasconcellos/The Enterprise / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Basketball Tournament, or TBT, is once again upon us this summer. The annual event was sparked by a text thread idea in 2010 and has quickly morphed into a worldwide broadcast of high-stakes, fun, winner take all open tournament.

If you take a closer look at the bracket for this year, you will notice that Omaha plays host to a region and a team of Creighton/UNL/UNO alumni, the Omaha Blue Crew, who are again competing after playing last year in two of TBT’s games of the year. The general manager and head coach is Josh Jones (CU), assistant coaches are by Doug McDermott (CU) and James “Ice” Benford, fellow manager Michael Vandevoort (CU), and the team is sponsored by DJ’s Dugout.

The team is made up of:

  1. Austin Chatman (CU), Ronnie Harrell (CU)
  2. Admon Gilder, Deverell Biggs (UNL), Jahenns Manigat (CU), Marcus Foster (CU)
  3. Tre’Shawn Thurman (UNO)
  4. Greg Smith, Ken Perkins
  5. Deion Bute, Manny Suarez (CU)

If you don’t have any plans yet for this weekend and will be in or feel like making a trip to Omaha, you can also attend the games this Saturday as well. The Omaha Blue Crew is set to tipoff at 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. CDT against Team Overtime with the game broadcast on ESPN2.

If you want to join the bracket challenge hosted by TBT, be sure to sign up here*:

For those unfamiliar with TBT, direct from the event’s website:

That 2010 text thread sparked a revolutionary idea. Could a fully open tournament model like the FA Cup be combined with a high stakes, winner-take-all format to create a new, alternative, underdog-driven, professional sports property?

After years of refining the concept, pitching TV partners and sponsors, the TBT founders realized they would need to launch the tournament themselves.

In 2014, Zach Lowe announced the concept , thus introducing the world to TBT. With the first game’s tip-off a few months later at 830 AM in Philadelphia in front of 17 fans, the event was born.

It has since hosted over 400 games, partnered with ESPN for global distribution, introduced a new way to end basketball games, paid out over $10 million in prizes, crowned eight champions, and made basketball fun again.

*The TBT bracket challenge is not affiliated with Corn Nation, SB Nation, or Vox Media, Inc. and is linked purely as an outside entity readers may choose freely to participate in based on that organization’s terms of use.