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Jackson Rotary Classic Showcases Six Ranked Teams for First Time

JACKSON, Tenn. - 11/14/2006 - The Jackson Rotary Club will host their 13th Annual Jackson Rotary Basketball Classic and for the fourth straight season, Union University’s Fred DeLay Gymnasium will be the host. The classic goes from Thursday, November 16 through Saturday, November 18.

For the first time since the Jackson Rotary Classic expanded to six teams in 2003, the entire field is ranked in the NAIA Preseason Top 25. Included in this year’s field are NAIA Co-No. 1’s Union University (Tenn.) and Vanguard University (Calif.). Completing the field of six is No. 7 Freed-Hardeman University (Tenn.), No. 16 Oklahoma Baptist University, No. 18 Georgetown College (Ky.), and No. 25 Lambuth University (Tenn.).

The Jackson Rotary Classic year after year has featured some of the NAIA’s best talent. The fans of West Tennessee and many from across the nation, who make the journey to Jackson, often get a preview of the same teams that make their way back to Jackson in March for the NAIA Women’s Basketball National Tournament at Oman Arena.

This classic features two teams (Union and Vanguard) that were in the final four of last season’s national tournament. In addition, over the past three seasons, the NAIA National Champion has played in the Jackson Rotary Classic (Union 2005, 2006; Southern Nazarene 2004)

The same could easily happen again in 2007 as this field has no strangers to the national tournament. The six teams in this year’s Rotary Classic have 57 combined national tournament appearances (Union 17, Oklahoma Baptist 12, Freed-Hardeman 10, Vanguard 8, Georgetown 6, and Lambuth 4). Only one other team in NAIA history has more NAIA National Tournament appearances that Union (Wayland Baptist 19). The six teams in the classic are a combined 85-53 (.616) all-time in national tournament games. Union leads the field with a 0.754 (43-14) tournament winning percentage, including 10 straight wins to earn Union the past two NAIA National Championships. Only two other current NAIA teams (Southern Nazarene-7 and Oklahoma City-4) have won more NAIA Women’s Basketball National Titles that Union’s three championships. Southwestern Okla., a current NCAA DII school, won five titles during the time in the NAIA.

For more information on the Jackson Rotary Classic, including schedules, results, and information concerning live audio and live stats, visit the Rotary Classic website.

#DOGS#


Steven Aldridge
Phone: (731) 661-5027
Sports Information
Fax: (731) 661-5182

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