The last time the Maryland men's basketball team faced off against Kentucky was back in 2002, when the Terps beat the Wildcats, 76-68, in the Sweet 16 en route to the program's first and only national championship.
According to a report in Crain's New York Business, though, the two storied programs could find themselves on the same court once again in non-conference play during the 2012-13 season.
The article, written by Matthew Flamm, states that a Maryland-Kentucky matchup will be the first basketball game played in the Barclays Center, the future home of the New Jersey Nets, which is set to open in September 2012.
In talking about the Brooklyn arena’s efforts to sell events and turn a profit, Flamm writes: “It also has 163 events booked for the first year, including 44 Nets games. … A major highlight will be the site's first basketball game, a college matchup of Kentucky versus Maryland, according to sources.”
Kentucky coach John "Calipari has said in the past that he wants Kentucky to be part of the first college basketball game at the Barclays Center of Brooklyn," Barry Baum, senior VP of communications for The Barclays Center, said in a phone interview with The Sun. "We're not going to confirm nor deny that report in Crain's, but I can tell you that the Barclays Center will host top college basketball games when we open in the 2012-13 season."
When asked by phone about the validity of the report, Maryland spokesman Doug Dull said, “Don’t know anything about it.”
John Hayden, a spokesman from Kentucky, said, “We haven’t released anything like that. We really don’t comment about future schedules. I’m not quite sure where they got that, but they didn’t get it from us.”
Even with two teams from outside of New York, the game should be a good draw for the new venue due to the teams’ histories. With Brooklyn just under 200 miles away from Baltimore, would you make the trip to watch the Terps play the Wildcats?
Jakob Engelke, a University of Maryland student, is an intern at The Baltimore Sun. Our fine interns will contribute guest posts to Baltimore Sports Blitz this summer. Contact Engelke at firstname.lastname@example.org.