Friday, March 25, 2016

[397] MTSU hoops fans invited to ‘Celebration of Champions’ at Murphy

March Madness may be over for both Blue Raider basketball teams, but the MTSU Athletic Department is seeking to put a “bow” on a strong season for both teams.
At 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 23, the Murphy Center will host the “Celebration of Champions,” an event that will recognize the stellar campaigns for both the men’s and women’s Blue Raider teams. Doors open at 5 p.m. and concessions will be on sale.
Associate Athletic Director Kortne Gosha and the rest of the Athletic Department wanted to take the opportunity to recognize both teams after their strong post-season runs.
“We wanted to have a chance to pay homage to our seniors and our athletics in general. Both teams won their conference outright and our men went on a magical run that did great things for not only this campus, but the city of Murfreesboro,” said Gosha.
According to MT Athletics Communications, brief remarks will come from MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee, Director of Athletics Chris Massaro, SGA President Lindsey Pierce, Rutherford County Mayor Ernest Burgess, Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarland and both head coaches. Commemorative posters will be available, teams will be introduced, a senior from each team will address the crowd, and an autograph session will take place at the conclusion of the event.
The Blue Raider men’s team finished the 2015-16 season with an impressive 25-10 record and in particular had a “magical” March as the team won its first Conference USA tournament title to secure the program’s second NCAA tournament appearance in the past four years.
Once in the tournament, coach Kermit Davis’ team secured the most prolific victory in program history by upsetting No. 2 seed Michigan State 90-81, a bracket-busting shocker that eliminated a team that was a consensus pick to make the Final Four.
The men’s team would fall in the round of 32 to No. 7 seed Syracuse.
The women’s team also posted a strong season and finished the year with a 24-9 record, also winning the Conference USA tournament to secure a 12th seed in the NCAA tournament. It marked the second NCAA appearance for the Blue Raiders since joining Conference USA and third such appearance in the past four years.
The Blue Raiders were eliminated by No. 5 seed Florida State in the round of 64.
Fans can purchase or renew season tickets at the same price as 2015-16, according to Athletics. The Blue Raider Athletic Association also will be available as they introduce the new Next Level campaign.
Textbook Brokers will also be on site to sell Conference USA Men's and Women's championship tees and hats, while also making available the Men's Bracket Buster shirts. Fans will be able to preorder the Nike “Always Reppin” shirts that are worn by each team.
“We want it to kind of be a big party. Just celebrating our men’s team’s magical run and celebrating our women’s successful season as well,” Gosha added. “Both of their runs were huge for our program and we just want everyone to come out, especially our students to come and help put a bow on both of their seasons.”
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