LAS VEGAS (August 24, 2015) – NCAA basketball action returns to MGM Grand in Las Vegas (www.mgmgrand.com) with two early season events featuring 10 teams at the 14,000-seat MGM Grand Garden Arena. The action tips November 23-25, 2015 with the “Men Who Speak Up Main Event,” the second annual tournament featuring eight teams playing on Monday and Wednesday of Thanksgiving week. For the third consecutive year, the “MGM Grand Showcase” will be played Friday, Dec. 4 with this year’s game featuring Oregon vs. UNLV. The game will benefit Coaches vs. Cancer, an initiative spearheaded by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (www.nabc.com) and the American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org).
New for 2015, the Main Event will be re-branded the Men Who Speak Up Main Event. Men Who Speak Up (www.menwhospeakup.com) is an educational initiative from Bayer Healthcare that raises the collective voices of prostate cancer to increase awareness about the condition and the importance of recognizing the symptoms of advancing disease. In the United States, prostate cancer is the second most frequently diagnosed cancer in men and a leading cause of cancer death in men.
The Men Who Speak Up Main Event features two four-team brackets with each team playing two games at the resort on November 23 and November 25. The Heavyweight bracket includes Clemson, Creighton, Massachusetts and Rutgers while the Middleweight bracket will feature Central Arkansas, Howard, UTSA and Texas Southern. Middleweight play begins Monday, Nov. 23 with UTSA vs. Central Arkansas at 12:30 p.m. PT followed by Texas Southern vs. Howard at 3 p.m. The evening session features Clemson vs. UMass at 6:30 p.m. followed by Creighton vs. Rutgers at 9 p.m. All eight teams will be in action on Wednesday with the Middleweight championship game being played at 3 p.m. and the Heavyweight championship game at 6:30 p.m., the latter will be televised nationally on ESPN2. An additional eight games will be played at home sites preceding the games in Las Vegas.
The action returns 10 days later when the Runnin’ Rebels face off with Pac-12 power Oregon. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN2 and UNLV is including the ticket in its home season ticket offering. This marks the second year in a row that the Rebels have played at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, which sits one mile from the school’s campus..
“We are excited to once again bring the Main Event and Showcase to MGM Grand and the Las Vegas Strip,” said Brooks Downing, president of bd Global (www.bdglobalsports.com), the event promoter. “Many thanks to MGM Grand and its President and COO Scott Sibella for the commitment to bring the best of college basketball to Las Vegas by supporting both of these outstanding events.”
2015 Main Event Highlights Movember
The Men Who Speak Up Main Event will also highlight Movember, an annual campaign in November challenging men to grow moustaches to spark conversations and raise funding for men’s health issues. As part of the Men Who Speak Up Main Event, 500 tickets will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis to men wearing moustaches to the games at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
“The symptoms of advancing prostate cancer can serve as an important warning sign for men to speak up and take action, but all too often men keep quiet when it matters most,” said Shannon Campbell, Vice President and General Manager of Oncology, Bayer HealthCare. “Through Men Who Speak Up, we hope to create a national movement to help men become more comfortable having these conversations with their doctors – and Movember, with its emphasis on conversation, is a perfect time to start. We are pleased to be partnering with some of the biggest names in college basketball to continue getting the word out and to show men that speaking up about their cancer symptoms is a sign of strength.”
Travel Package and Ticket Information
Tickets for both events go on-sale Tuesday, Aug. 25 at 10 a.m. PT at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.
WorldTEK, a full-service travel management company with more than 40+ years of experience, is the official travel package provider for the MGM Who Speak Up Main Event. Information on fan travel packages, rooms at MGM Grand and tournament tickets is available on www.mgmgrandmainevent.com.
For complete information, visit www.mgmgrandmainevent.com and www.mgmgrandshowcase.com or follow on Twitter at @HOOPSatMGM.