Maryland, Illinois, Virginia among six new alumni teams to apply to TBT 2020

 

By Josh Brown | @josh_brown31


Alumni teams from around the country are gearing up for TBT 2020

It became obvious pretty early on that TBT 2020 is going to be our biggest summer yet. Before we even officially closed the book on 2019, alumni teams from Florida State, Purdue, St. Bonaventure, and Virginia Tech announced they would be entering alumni teams this summer. It turns out that was just scratching the surface. Over the last couple weeks, six more high-profile alumni teams have thrown their hat into the ring, with many more coming in the not-too-distant future. Let's dive in and take a look!

Alabama

At this point, we don't really know anything about this 'Bama alumni squad. They haven't revealed a team name, coach, or any players on the roster. And that's perfectly OK! With still 2.5 weeks until registration opens up and 3.5 months until final rosters are due, the road to $2 million hasn't even started yet. Of course, that hasn't stopped people from speculating. With fan favorites like Levi Randolph, Trevor Releford, Shannon Hale Jr, and Retin Obasohan all playing at high levels around the world, it will be fascinating to see how the Crimson Tide alums fill out the roster.

 

Illinois

There are dozens of TBT teams with really awesome, rabid fanbases. Illini fans are quickly starting to rise up the rankings and they HAVEN'T PLAYED A SINGLE GAME YET. Seriously. Ever since the Illinois alums announced that they are applying to the Columbus Regional, the feedback has been pouring in on a non-stop basis. While we're still waiting on the first roster additions, the team did make another big announcement on Tuesday night. The Orange and Blue will look to play under the name "House of 'Paign" this summer, an ode to their home city of Champaign. Between a first-class fanbase and a huge alumni pool to choose from, this is a team that can make a massive splash in year one. 

 

Marshall

 It's only February, but this summer is already turning out to be a dream for Jon and Ot Elmore. Not only is TBT coming to their hometown of Charleston, West Virginia, but it looks like they're going to enter a Marshall alumni team after playing with the WV Wildcats the last couple years. Assuming it all comes together, this will undoubtably be a sleeper team to watch. All eyes will be on Jon Elmore, the Conference USA's all-time leader in points and assists. But that's just scraching the surface with this squad. Herd alum C.J. Burks committed to play early last week - his 1,892 points are fifth most in school history. Stevie Browning, who was named to the 2017 Conference USA All-Tournament Team, isn't far behind with 1,694 career points. Ryan Taylor became the first player in Marshall history to reach career totals of 1,500 points, 800 rebounds, and 250 assists. Don't be surprised to see these guys make a deep, deep run.

 

Maryland

Over the past six years, few programs have faced more pressure to put a team in TBT than Maryland. It's not hard to see why. With a huge network of alumni playing at high levels around the world -- but not necessarily tied up in NBA contracts -- the Terps are exactly the sort of program that could thrive in TBT. It seems like the players have taken this sentiment to heart, as school legends Melo Trimble, Dez Wells, Robert Carter Jr, and Richaud Peck are all rumored to be playing. If that comes to fruition, that's already an insanely talented roster just four guys deep. And with games being held just 12 miles from campus in Washington DC, don't be surprised to see Maryland superfan Scott Van Pelt and the rest of Terp Nation out in full force this summer if they get in. 

 

Oklahaoma State

Rumors had been swirling for months that Oklahoma State would be entering an alumni team in TBT 2020. They finally made it official on February 6...and boy was it worth the wait. Not only was the announcement met with great fanfare from the Cowboys faithful, but also Oklahoma State legends alike. Take Tony Allen for example, who was so excited by the news that it appears he agreed to play for the team on the spot. While official roster announcements are expected in the very near future, based on some of the names we're hearing, this team is truly going to embody the best of Oklahoma State from the past 10-15 years. 

 

Virginia

What happens when you take Tony Bennett's famous Pack Line defense and put it in the highest stakes basketball tournament in the world? Looks like we could find out at this summer's Washington DC Regional. Fittingly named Pack Line U, this Virginia alumni squad will look to become the first team in tournament history to win a National Championship and TBT Championship in consecutive years. One person who believes in them? Former Hoos legend and Brooklyn Nets guard Joe Harris, who predicted a DEEP run for the squad at All-Star Weekend in Chicago. With Akil Mitchell already committed to play and several other big names rumored to join soon as well, it's looking like that could be a winning bet.