ESPNU will televise a four-hour ESPNU Midnight Madness special featuring extensive whip-around coverage from top college basketball programs around the nation Friday, Oct. 15, at 9 p.m. ET on ESPNU HD. ESPN platforms have been covering Midnight Madness events since 1993, with this season marking the fifth consecutive year on ESPNU.
Coverage will focus on several men’s programs including defending national champion Duke, and NCAA Championship participants Kentucky, Memphis, Gonzaga and Kansas State. The Connecticut women’s program – the two-time defending national champion, which is riding a 78-game winning streak (10 short of the UCLA men's record for consecutive victories in NCAA Division I basketball) – will also be featured. The Huskies will be the first women’s team to be showcased during Midnight Madness.
ESPNU Midnight Madness locations:
School - Site
Connecticut - Gampel Pavilion
Duke - Cameron Indoor Stadium
Gonzaga - McCarthey Athletic Center
Kentucky - Rupp Arena
Memphis - FedEx Forum
Kansas State - Bramlage Coliseum
ESPNU anchor Lowell Galindo will host this year’s coverage. For the third straight year he will be joined by ESPN.com senior college basketball writer Andy Katz and analyst and former University of Maryland standout Adrian Branch, who played for former Terrapin legend Charles “Lefty” Driesell, the founder of Midnight Madness. The studio team will provide analysis between look-ins to each Midnight Madness event. ESPNU will also have commentators (to be named at a later date) at each Midnight Madness site location.
ESPNU’s coverage will also tap into Midnight Madness events throughout the country including ESPNU’s Campus Connection, allowing students to contribute a unique all-access perspective.
ESPN.com’s Katz has all five men’s programs featured during ESPNU Midnight Madness ranked in his early men’s preseason top 25 poll – No. 1 Duke, No. 5 Kansas State, No. 9 Gonzaga, No. 13 Kentucky and No. 19 Memphis. The Connecticut women are expected to be ranked in the top five nationally heading into the 2010-11 season.
ESPNU will begin its coverage of live college basketball games for the ESPN family of networks Monday, Nov. 8, with two matchups from the 2K Sports Classic benefitting Coaches vs. Cancer. Tipping off the season is NIT semifinalist Rhode Island at Pittsburgh at 7 p.m., followed by Navy at Texas at 9 p.m. ESPNU will air more than 300 men’s and women’s basketball games combined, including action from more than 25 NCAA Division I conferences.
The 24-hour college sports television network airs more than 650 live events annually and offers over 400 original studio shows. ESPNU has seen a dramatic increase since its inception on March 4, 2005 and is now in over 73 million households. The brand is also available in high definition on ESPNUHD, now in over 17 million homes.