Western Herald – sports
The Western Michigan University Broncos basketball team will clash with the 2016 NCAA champion, Villanova Wildcats, in the Charleston Classic. This tournament is one of ESPN’s college sporting events held in November at the TD Arena in Charleston, South Carolina, where the College of Charleston’s teams play their home games. The event takes place over the course of three days beginning November 17th with 12 teams all vying for the trophy.
The ESPN owned and operated Charleston Classic is an invitational event that began in 2008, which was also the last time the Broncos participated in the event. Western hopes for better results this year as the team went 0-3 in that tournament years ago.
The Broncos have seen substantial success under coach Steve Hawkins, posting winning seasons in eight of the 13 seasons that he has coached the team. WMU has played all five of ESPN’s hosted basketball events under coach Hawkins, the only team to do so: They’ve played in the Wooden Legacy tournament in Anaheim in 2014; the Advocare Invitational in Orlando, at the Walt Disney Resort in 2006; the Puerto Rico Tip-Off, in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 2011; the Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii in 2009; and of course the very first Charleston Classic in Charleston, South Carolina. Clearly the Broncos are no strangers to the ESPN spotlight.
However, the Broncos have a shaky overall record in these tournaments, despite posting winning records in most of the seasons that they have participated in the events over the past decade. Western’s best performance throughout the years in the ESPN tournaments was fourth place in the AdvoCare Invitational in 2006.
This is the Broncos second go around in the Charleston Classic and the Broncos back home will be spurring their team on, in hopes of knocking off the reigning NCAA champions in the opening round and maintain that momentum for …