EPSN To Cover CRC Basketball Classic
ESPN 2/ESPN U to Broadcast Cancer Research Classic Live from Wheeling
WHEELING, W.Va. – ESPN 2 and ESPN U will broadcast the Saturday evening games of the fifth annual Cancer Research Classic (CRC) at Wheeling Jesuit University (WJU), CRC Director Dr. Gregory Merrick has announced.
Scheduled for Jan. 6-7, the event is sponsored by Wheeling Hospital’s Schiffler Cancer Center, Urologic Research Institute (URI) and the Men’s Health Center, as well as WJU.
The game to air on ESPN 2 on Jan. 7 will feature Simeon (Chicago) versus Miller Grove (Lithonia, GA) at 8 p.m., At 10 p.m., ESPN U will broadcast the game between Gonzaga (Washington, DC) and Whitney Young (Chicago). There is a possibility that a third game will be broadcast on the network.
MaxPreps has listed the CRC No. 3 on its list of the nation’s top 10 premier showcase basketball events. In October, ESPN released its Powerade Fab 50 preseason boys’ basketball rankings. Seven of the top 34 teams will compete in the CRC on Jan. 7. The other five participating teams are ranked in the top 10 in their region.
“We are honored to have the preseason No. 1 ranked team, Simeon, playing the No. 2 ranked, Miller Grove,” Merrick said. “Gonzaga is ranked No. 19 and Whitney Young No. 34. This is the strongest team and individual line-up in the five-year history of the CRC. These games provide the opportunity for the region to be recognized on a national level as an area that can provide top level high school sporting events.”
Basketball fans have the chance to see 80 to 85 future Division 1 picks and five or six potential NBA players. Other perennial powerhouses demonstrating their skills at the CRC are No. 6 Mater Dei, No. 13 DeMatha and No. 21Neumann-Goretti.
A sampling of the brand of players coming to Wheeling include: Jabari Parker (Simeon) the nation’s top-ranked player; Tony Parker (Miller Grove), a leading Mr. Basketball USA candidate; Xavier Johnson (Mater Dei), ESPNHS Underclass All-American; BeeJay Anya (DeMatha), one of the top-ranked juniors; Nate Britt (Gonzaga), No. 1 ranked junior point guard; and Jahill Okafur (Whitney Young), No. 1 ranked sophomore.
Local teams participating in the event are: Wheeling Central Catholic up against Pittsburgh Central Catholic at 7:30 p.m., Jan. 6; and Wheeling Park versus St. Joseph’s Prep at 2 p.m., Jan. 7. Other national teams attending the CRC and all playing Saturday are: Paul IV (Fairfax VA); Gill St. Bernard’s (Gladstone NJ); and St. Raymond (Bronx).
More than 150 players who have played in the CRC have gone on to play college basketball throughout the U.S., including in such prominent programs as Temple, Pitt, Rutgers, Seton Hall, Syracuse, Maryland, North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest, Miami, Louisville, Memphis, Tennessee, Kansas State, Texas, Villanova and Arizona.
Multiple players from this year’s line-up are being recruited by West Virginia University, The Ohio State University and Pitt.
Dylan Butler of the New York Post wrote, “The Cancer Research Classic is the best one-day high school basketball tournament in the nation, bar none. For at least one day a year, Wheeling, WV, is the center of the high school basketball universe.
In Prep Scouting, Chas Wolfe wrote, “The Cancer Research Classic is one of the top shootouts in the country. >From the people to the players it’s a Slam-Dunk Event!”
Proceeds of the CRC support Wheeling Hospital’s men’s health programs, prostate cancer research and undergraduate scholarships at WJU. The tournament promotes men’s health issues, including prostate cancer, testicular cancer, erectile dysfunction, urinary disorders (BPH and overactive bladder), obesity, wellness, heart disease, diabetes and hypertension. Free heath care screenings will also be available and administered by physician residents from Wheeling Hospital’s Family Medicine Residency Program.
Merrick said, “Local basketball events are excellent venues to use as vehicles to promote the cause of men’s health. The CRC provides an opportunity for men not only to witness a day of great high school basketball, but also obtain free health screenings.”
Daily admission for the event is $4 for students and $7 for adults.
As an added attraction, this year’s event will open Thursday, Jan. 5, featuring “An Evening with Clark Kellogg,” CBS Sports broadcaster and former Ohio State All-American and NBA player. Kellogg will speak at a special dinner at Oglebay Resort & Conference Center as a prelude to the fifth annual CRC.
Kellogg is in his 16th year as an analyst for CBS Sports’ NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship coverage. He joined CBS full-time in 1997 as a studio/game analyst for college basketball. Kellogg served as a game analyst for CBS’s NCAA Tournament coverage in 1994 and as studio co-host for first- and second-round coverage from 1994-97. He has co-hosted “The Road to the Final Four” since 1997.
He served as an analyst for ESPN’s regular season basketball coverage and has worked for the Big East Network and Prime Sports. In addition, Kellogg has served a television analyst for the NBA’s Indiana Pacers broadcast since 1990.
From 1979-82, Kellogg played collegiately at Ohio State, earning All-Big Ten and Most Valuable Player honors in ’82. He was the No. 1 draft pick of the Indiana Pacers in 1982 and played five seasons before retiring with chronic knee problems. He received a marketing degree from Ohio State in December 1996.
Tickets are $75 each or $500 for a table of eight.
For more information, call 304-243-3138, or visit www.cancerresearchclassic.org.