Per ESPN’s Jeff Goodman, the Tennessee Volunteers have drawn the Purdue Boilermakers for their first matchup at the Battle 4 Atlantis.
Battle of Atlantis matchups, per source: Purdue vs. Tennessee, Villanova vs. Western Kentucky, NC State vs. Arizona, SMU vs. Northern Iowa.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) August 14, 2017
The event will take place over Thanksgiving (November 22-24) in the Bahamas.
Purdue is expected to be a top 15 team, come time for the polls to be released. They’ll be a stout early test for the Volunteers who have plenty of new faces, but that’s hardly the worst opening draw that the Vols could have received.
The Boilermakers finished with a 27-8 mark last season, advancing to the sweet sixteen in the NCAA Tournament.
Meanwhile, both Arizona and Villanova are in play to be top five teams in the country. Much like last year in Maui, Tennessee will likely get the opportunity to play a couple of those big name teams depending on how the bracket falls.
In the Maui Invitational last year, Tennessee put up good fights against Wisconsin and Oregon, but fell short in each. This is a good early test and an opportunity for Rick Barnes and his roster to prove their worth on a national stage.
N.C. State, SMU, Northern Iowa and Western Kentucky round out the tournament field. We’ll update you when we get an official bracket from the tournament.