If you have followed us for any length of time, than you know that we are BIG fans of the The Basketball Tournament (TBT) and enjoy watching and covering it every year. While we still hope one day to get a full NAIA All-Star team into it, there are once again plenty of former NAIA players and coaches who are on teams this year who will be trying to battle it out for the $1million winner-take-all tournament. So, if you are missing watching basketball and need a quick fix, the TBT is a really fun tournament that you can catch on ESPN starting July 16th!

The Bracket

What is the TBT?

The TBT is a 64 team winner take all tournament. The $1million prize is split amongst the winning team. You see more and more former NCAA D1 Alumni teams featured in the TBT these days. However, the field also contains some teams who are raising awareness for different causes, like Americana for Autism, Sideline Cancer, Team Challenge ALS and others. The rest of the field are All-Star teams with different ties to one another. Most of the players are playing or have played in high level pro leagues, including several who had stints in the NBA. This is a very serious tournament with a large prize pool, yet it’s main uniqueness comes from the Elam Ending style format that tends to provide plenty of fun endings to games! For more on the TBT you can visit: Home – The Basketball Tournament (thetournament.com)

NAIA Connections to Watch

As of right now, this is the list of players, coaches or GM’s that are on TBT teams. These are subject to change as we have seen many times throughout the years that the TBT rosters tend to be always changing. However, plenty of great NAIA connections featured, once again, in the TBT.

Autism Army

#21 Ronald March – Philander Smith

Best Virginia

Head Coach James Long – Former West Virginia Tech Head Coach

Chicago Hoopville

#0 Deshawn Munson – Harris Stowe State

#13 Nicholas McKenzie – Harris Stowe State

Competitive Choice

#24 William Lloyd – Xavier University of Louisiana

Eberline Drive

GM – Matt Mitchell – Olivet Nazarene University

Fort Wayne Champs

#3 Trevion Crews – Bethel (IN)

Jackson TN Underdawgs

#0 Anthony Smpson – Freed-Hardeman University

#6 Leland Robinson – Tennessee Wesleyan

#33 Quincy Scates – Tennessee Wesleyan

Men of Mackey

#24 Kyle Mangas – Indiana Wesleyan

#22 Evan Maxwell – Indiana Wesleyan

Omaha Blue Crew

Assistant Coach – James “Ice” Benford – Bellevue

Sweet Home Alabama

GM Brandon Wood – Stillman baseball alum and former student assistant on basketball team

#55 Nigel Jones – Talladega College

Team Arkansas

Assistant Coach – Brock Widders – Lyon College

#32 Chris Coffey – Georegetown

Virginia Dream

#1 Austin Butler – Montreat College

#10 Niquan Cousins – Bluefield University

#11 Cordaris Townes – Bluefield University

War Ready

#32 Antonio Hester – Mobile

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