Auburn hoops to play Rutgers in ESPN event next December

AUBURN -- Auburn will play Rutgers in the fourth annual DIRECTV SEC/BIG EAST Invitational in the brand new CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh o ESPN2 on Saturday, Dec. 11.

It will be part of a basketball doubleheader with Tennessee vs. Pittsburgh, ESPN Regional Television announced.

Game times for the doubleheader will be announced at a later date. This marks the second time that Auburn has played in the SEC/Big East Invitational as the Tigers lost to West Virginia in 2007 at the BJCC Arena in Birmingham.

The two-night men's college basketball event features four games from two off-campus sites beginning on Dec. 8 at Freedom Hall in Louisville with Arkansas vs. Seton Hall at 6 pm Central on ESPN2 followed by Kentucky vs. Notre Dame at 8:30 pm on ESPN.

"This is great for college basketball and for the SEC, Big East and ESPN to continue to be a part of this format," said first-year Auburn head coach Tony Barbee.  "It is outstanding for both leagues, and it is important to have high-level basketball exposure in December."

Teams invited to participate in the DIRECTV SEC/BIG EAST Invitational are chosen by ESPN in consultation with the conferences and are based on geographic and competitive criteria.