Badger Bits: UW basketball headed back to Las Vegas

The father and son duo of head coach Greg McDermott and All-American forward Doug McDermott lead a Creighton squad that could be Wisconsin's toughest competition in the Las Vegas Invitational.

Details of Wisconsin basketball's 2012-13 non-conference schedule continue to trickle in, and the latest announcement is that the Badgers will play in the Las Vegas Invitational on the Friday and Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend. Possible opponents for Wisconsin in the four-team tournament include Creighton, Arizona State, and Arkansas. A potential matchup with Creighton is intriguing, as the Bluejays return most of their players from their NCAA tournament run this past March, including All-American forward Doug McDermott.

Wisconsin has made an effort in recent years to schedule away games in Las Vegas in both football and basketball, so this announcement comes as no large surprise. The hoops squad last played in Vegas in 2010, losing to UNLV 68-65. That game was best remembered for Mike Bruesewitz throwing an inbounds pass to a UNLV player when the Badgers were trailing by one late in the game.

This tournament also sets up two games for the Badgers to host at the Kohl Center. According to the Cornell Basketball Blog, the Big Red will be one of the two teams slated to play in Madison. I don't think I need to remind you what happened the last time the Badgers played Cornell in basketball.

The Wisconsin football team also plays away from Madison on Thanksgiving weekend, but they will be headed to a much less glamorous destination: State College, Pa. Still, there could be much at stake in the late-season matchup with Leaders Division rival Penn State.

Thursday Links:

College hockey is likely to make a change from full face shields to three-quarter visors on helmets. UW coach Mike Eaves is slightly torn on the issue, though.

Barry Alvarez is still trying to get a football series between Wisconsin and Notre Dame set up, but hasn't made much progress. One of ND's other Big Ten series (Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue) would have to be nixed before they would play Wisconsin, most likely.

Wisconsin softball just missed making the NCAA Tournament this year, but 2B Whitney Massey and OF Kendall Grimm both earned first-team All-Big Ten accolades. It was the first time in program history that two Badgers were named to the first team in a single season.

The Daily Northwestern ranks the Wisconsin offensive line as the best in the Big Ten.

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany expects that cities will bid yearly for the right to host the new incarnation of the college football national championship game. Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports thinks that the Big Ten's undying love of the Rose Bowl is absurd.

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