San Diego carrier could host big-time men's hoops game


Possibly coming next season to a flattop deck near you (if you’re stationed in San Diego):

Michigan State and North Carolina square off in the 2009 Men's Final Four basketball tournament. // Andy Lyons, Getty Images

That’s right: If you’re in the right place at the right time next fall, you could be watching a choice early season matchup between traditional men’s college basketball powers North Carolina and Michigan State aboard a Navy carrier. Will it happen? According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, Tar Heels coach Roy Williams said Monday, “It hasn’t been announced yet, but we’re supposed to be playing Michigan State in San Diego on an aircraft carrier on Veterans Day next year.” But nothing’s been set as yet. Said Naval Air Forces spokesman Lt. Aaron Kakiel, “We’re aware of their desire, but nothing has been confirmed. We’re waiting on a formal proposal.”

And way too early, he said, to name which carrier might host the game. Something about operational schedules and national security rings a bell …

The game would probably be played outside, as the flight deck seems like the only feasible area where a full basketball court and temporary seats could be set up. (The hangar is probably just too tight of a space, even with all sliding bay doors open.) The paper points out that an aircraft carrier flight deck is 1,092 feet by 250 feet, while a college basketball court is 94 feet by 50 feet. Extra space is needed on all sides for benches, media and space to dive for loose balls — not to mention a lot of seats.

Presumably, the teams would bring in a wooden floor. Sure would hate to dive for a loose ball on a flight deck!

If it happens, the paper pointed out, the game would be played on 11/11/11.

Stay tuned …


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