JACKSON, Tenn. - 11/24/2009 - The Union University men’s basketball team is playing host to the 2009 Bulldog Thanksgiving Classic on Friday and Saturday, November 27-28. This year, the classic features four teams, all of which are ranked in the NAIA top 25. No. 11 Union and fellow TranSouth foe, No. 18 Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.), will play No. 5 McKendree (Ill.) and No. 23 Life (Ga.).
Union (4-2) has already played McKendree, with the Bulldogs winning on the road 66-64 at McKendree on November 14. After McKendree rallied from a five point deficit in the final 55 seconds to lead by one point, Union’s Greg Truvillion drained a three pointer with four seconds left to give Union the win. Union has a 1-1 record this season versus ranked teams with the win at McKendree and the 69-66 loss to No. 25 Olivet Nazarene.
McKendree (7-1) enters the classic with just the one loss to Union. McKendree head coach Harry Statham has recently reached the 1,000 career win mark. He becomes the first men’s college basketball coach (NAIA or NCAA) to reach the 1,000 win mark. Statham and Tennessee’s Pat Summitt in the women’s ranks are the only two college basketball coaches to reach the mark.
Freed-Hardeman (6-1) has three wins over teams ranked in the Top 25 this season with the latest coming 90-86 in overtime over Lee (Tenn.). Freed-Hardeman also has wins over No. 20 Auburn-Montgomery (Ala.) and No. 21 Tougaloo (Miss.).
Life (6-2) enters the classic with a 1-1 record versus top-25 teams. Life lost to No. 12 Lindenwood 95-79 and then beat No. 20 Auburn-Montgomery (Ala.) 96-94. Life has won three NAIA national titles and has one national runner-up finish.
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