Auburn, Purdue, Texas Tech, Utah State to headline 2016 Men’s Cancun Challenge

FORT COLLINS, Colo. – Four men’s Division I teams ready to make their debut in one of college basketball’s premier destination tournaments will be attending the 2016 Cancun Challenge.

Tournament officials announced today that Auburn, Purdue, Texas Tech and Utah State are the four teams that will make up the Riviera Division of the event, held just before the Thanksgiving holiday at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, on the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. The Cancun Challenge features games in both the U.S. and Mexico; the four teams playing in the Mayan Division will be announced later this spring.

The tournament format includes eight games played in the United States as the four teams in the Riviera Division host the four schools in the Mayan Division. All eight teams then travel to Mexico for two games played in their respected divisions (Nov. 22-23). All four games of the Riviera Division will be nationally televised live in HD from the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya on CBS Sports Network.

“We are very happy to announce the participation of four great teams for the 2016 Cancun Challenge. The event has had many great basketball programs in the past, and this year’s field will continue the tradition,” said tournament director Brent Amick. “The uniqueness of the location and event setup makes this tournament a truly special experience for fans who want to follow their favorite team. It is a great way to enjoy the warm climate of the Riviera Maya combined with great basketball in a close-up, intimate setting.”

The Cancun Challenge, entering its ninth year for the men, is one of the most unique basketball events held each year. Teams stay and play at the all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya; the resort’s convention center ballroom is converted into a basketball arena, providing fans a special close-up view of the games. Upon arrival, teams and fans are treated to a spectacular all-inclusive rock star vacation with games, practices, unlimited dining and drinks, world class entertainment, and fun all in one location. Previous champions include Vanderbilt (2008), Kentucky (2009), Missouri (2010), Illinois (2011), Wichita State (2012), Wisconsin (2013), Northern Iowa (2014) and Maryland (2015).

Located just off the azure waters of the Caribbean Sea, the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya offers the ultimate vacation for guests of all ages with both the adults-only and family friendly resort experiences. With a combined 1,264 ultra-posh and lavishly appointed guestrooms boasting balcony, terrace views or new, expansive sky terrace options with picturesque views, hydro tubs in each room, world-class shopping and endless style, Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya is nothing short of the ultimate crowd-pleaser. Complete with expansive outdoor pools and private beach, this all-inclusive escape offers nine world-class restaurants, eight bars and lounges, in addition to 88,915 square feet of state-of-the-art meeting and event space ideal for elegant banquets, themed parties, weddings, concerts, and more.

Seating is limited for this exclusive event, and fans should book land travel packages through Triple Crown Sports for admission into games in Mexico. Travel packages are the only way to guarantee admission to games at this time. For travel package information, contact Sarah Sullivan at 970-672-0533 or email to, or visit the website at

About Cancun Challenge at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya

The Cancun Challenge is owned and produced by Triple Crown Sports, based in Fort Collins, Colorado. Triple Crown Sports also produces the women’s Cancun Challenge, a Division I college basketball tournament during the same week at the same resort, as well as the Preseason and Postseason Women’s NIT. Two recent men’s champions (Wisconsin, 2013 and Wichita State, 2012) reached the NCAA Final Four that same season. For more information on the Cancun Challenge, visit

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Posted in USU