Initially reported by Jon Rothstein at CBS, the Nebraska Cornhuskers have announced the first members to officially join in on what is expected to be a 16-team tournament in Lincoln to start the season. The initial field to sign on includes:
Other teams, particularly from around the region within driving distance, are expected to be announced soon. LSU and Northern Iowa both finished with over 20 wins last season. The Tigers from Baton Rouge also made the Sweet 16 in the 2019 NCAA tournament before this very writer witnessed them getting beat down by eventual Final Four participant Michigan State.
Nebraska will host the largest pool of teams of any school in college basketball this season. One big reason for this, sources said, was the cost per game per school is much lower than most other MTE situations. Also, many schools involved will be within driving distance.— Matt Norlander (@MattNorlander) October 6, 2020
With a 16-team field, the tournament will be able to provide the maximum number of multiple-team event games allowed under the new NCAA rules for the 2020-2021 season, which is three. Presuming Nebraska will also try to keep the Creighton game and will be participating in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge, that will leave two “buy” games in addition to the 20 game conference schedule.
The “multiple-team event” will be hosted by the third party company Elevate Hoops for legal and liability reasons. It is expected that Pinnacle Bank Arena and the Devaney Center will both be used for games. Further details such as testing protocols, brackets, and other participants are still forthcoming.