LOGAN, Utah – Utah State men’s basketball has added another neutral site game to its 2019-20 non-conference slate, as the Aggies will face South Florida inside the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas, on Wednesday, Dec. 18. The contest will be part of the inaugural Battleground 2k19, a three-game slate including Baylor, UTSA, Oregon State and Tennessee Martin.
The Aggies will be facing USF for just the second time in program history, posting a 69-66 victory over the Bulls at the Top of the World Classic in Fairbanks, Alaska, during the 2000-01 season.
South Florida is coming off a season in which it captured the the College Basketball Invitational title, finishing the year with an overall mark of 24-14. The Bulls return each of their top-four leading scorers in junior guard David Collins (15.9 ppg), senior guard LaQuincy Rideau (13.4 ppg), sophomore forward Alexis Yetna (12.3 ppg) and junior wing Justin Brown (8.3 ppg). Yetna also paced USF on the glass, pulling down 9.6 rebounds per game, while Rideau led the team with 5.4 assists per game.
South Florida led the nation in free throws attempted (1,018) and made (658) a season ago, and was also strong on the glass, finishing sixth in offensive rebounds per game (13.66) and 14th in rebounding margin (+6.7). Rideau ranked sixth in the nation in steals per game (2.89) and was one of just 26 players that recorded a triple-double during the season.
The backdrop for Battleground 2k19 will be a campaign called Athletes Against Abuse. The initiative, in connection with U-Sports Group, will strive to blur the lines between sport and service, inspiring athletes to use their ability, notoriety and influence to improve the lives of those around them. The initiative will utilize the Battleground 2k platform to get college basketball programs involved and bring awareness to child abuse in our country.
“The Battleground 2k Series will provide college basketball programs with an alternative to traditional MTE’s and neutral-site events,” U-Sports Group President Rhossi Carron says. “Our platform was constructed to highlight relevant social issues, with the idea of using the power of sports to create change in our communities and in ourselves. Competing, not just for the sake of winning, but also for the cause of change, is at the heart of U-Sports Group and will be reflected in our sporting events.”
Tickets for The Battleground 2k19 will go on sale Friday, Sept. 13, at 11 a.m. (MT) and can be purchased online at www.Battleground2k.com or www.ToyotaCenter.com. Tickets will also be available at the Toyota Center box office. For group tickets and special rates for youth organizations and sports teams, please send inquiry to Tickets@Battlegroud2k.com. Game times and television broadcast information will be released at a later date.