Gonzaga, Saint Mary’s to Play in ESPN Tip-Off Marathon


ESPN released its schedule for the 2014 College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon, and two West Coast Conference schools will be televised on the Worldwide Leader in Sports.

In one of the first games of the entire season, Gonzaga (who ESPN has ranked No. 15) will battle SMU (who ESPN has ranked No. 12) in the McCarthey Athletic Center. The game will be televised on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. PST.

Saint Mary’s plays New Mexico State at the McKeon Pavilion the same night (or next day, technically). That game can be viewed on ESPN2 at 12 a.m. PST.

In last season’s tip-off marathon, both the Zags and the Gaels played at roughly the same times. In a 4 p.m. PST tip-off, Gonzaga handled Colorado State with ease, defeating the Rams by a score of 93 to 61. The Gaels handled the Akron Zips in the same fashion during their midnight matchup, defeating their MAC opponent by a score of 85-63.

While it was exciting to see both teams play on the ESPN family of networks early in the season, both games were non-competetive and not very exciting. That should change this season, as both schools upgrading its competition.

Although the Mustangs lost five-star point guard Emmanuel Mudiay to playing overseas, the Mustangs brings back a host of starters and will be a fringe top-10 team in the preseason rankings. Expect Larry Brown and his squad to put up a decent fight against the Bulldogs.

New Mexico State loses Sim Bhullar to the draft, but they return his brother, Tanveer Bhullar, and few other key players, making the bout between the Cowboys and the Gaels an intriguing one.