CSF, Jordan Brand to host holiday college basketball event in Queen City

CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte Sports Foundation announced Thursday that it is partnering with Jordan Brand on a three-year deal to host the Jumpman Invitational -- a major holiday college basketball event in the Queen City.

The inaugural gathering, slated for Dec. 20-21, 2022, will feature both the men’s and women’s teams from the original four schools to sign partnership deals with Jordan Brand in both basketball and football: Florida, Michigan, North Carolina and Oklahoma.

All games will be played in Charlotte’s Spectrum Center in partnership with Hornets Sports & Entertainment, which owns the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets and operates the facility.

The schedule will feature two games each night, with matchups and game times still to be determined. ESPN networks will air all four games, with ESPN Events working in conjunction with CSF to maximize the event’s success in front of a global audience.

“We’re incredibly excited to bring what we believe will quickly become the marquee college basketball event of the holiday season to the Queen City,” said Danny Morrison, executive director of the Charlotte Sports Foundation. “These are four of the most storied and competitive programs in the game, and we’re looking forward to the interconference play.”

“I’ve got to thank Oklahoma Athletics Director Joe Castiglione for being the first to suggest getting the original four Jordan Brand schools together for an event,” added Morrison. “And our Board of Directors is especially pleased to highlight both men’s and women’s college basketball in this way while offering the same amazing experience for all the players, coaches and fans.”

Jordan Brand plans to create unique experiences for fans as well as players and coaches in conjunction with the event. Details are being finalized and will be announced in the coming months.

“Charlotte has a rich history of hosting high-profile basketball events, including the NBA All-Star Game, NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament games, the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament, the CIAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments and this year’s Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout. We look forward to welcoming basketball fans from across the country to enjoy our hospitality and culture, and we’re grateful to the Charlotte Sports Foundation and Jordan Brand for organizing this event that will bring so much recognition and positive economic impact to our city,” Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles said.

Morrison said the possibility exists to expand the event to include more Jordan-affiliated schools in 2023 or 2024, or to extend the partnership into subsequent years.

“We’re hoping this will be the start of one of the most anticipated, coveted and competitive events in all of college basketball each and every year,” said Morrison. “Charlotte has all the resources to make this an overwhelming success including an incredibly passionate fan base, and we look forward to seeing this event grow in stature for years to come.”

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