Virginia, Villanova scheduled for Dec. 19 at Madison Square Garden

uva virginiaThree of the last four national titles will be represented in the mecca of the basketball world on Dec. 19 with Virginia and Villanova facing off in Madison Square Garden.

The noon Saturday game will be televised on Fox in a reprise of a recent series that saw the two split a pair of games in 2016 and 2017.

“We are excited to announce this non-conference game against Villanova at Madison Square Garden,” Virginia coach Tony Bennett said. “We have great respect for coach Jay Wright and his program, and look forward to playing the Wildcats in a terrific environment.”

The ‘Hoos are still your defending national champs, since the 2020 NCAA Tournament ended up getting canceled due to the series of COVID-19 lockdowns.

The Cavaliers (23-7) ranked No. 16 in the final Associated Press poll for 2019-20, while the Wildcats (24-7) finished No. 10.

Villanova won national titles in 2016 and 2018.

UVA defeated ‘Nova on Dec. 19, 2015, at JPJ, winning 86-75 against that eventual title-winning Wildcats team.

Villanova won the back end of the home-and-home on Jan. 29, 2017, when a Donte DiVincenzo put-back at the buzzer gave Villanova a 61-59 win at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.

“We are thrilled that two of the top college basketball programs in America are squaring off at Madison Square Garden this winter,” said Joel Fisher, executive vice president, MSG Marquee Events/Operations. “Villanova and Virginia have won three of the last four NCAA men’s basketball championships, so this will be a treat for New York area fans and a highlight of The Garden’s college basketball schedule next season.”

Story by Chris Graham


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