MSU hoops to compete in 2018 'Barnstorming Tour'

Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis has taken on the role of “The Riddler” over the past month, tweeting out clues about an upcoming MSU sporting event. The riddle was solved today as Hollis announced the creation of a four-team “barnstorming tour” with MSU, Florida, North Carolina and Texas playing a round-robin set of three games, one each in New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles.

The plan is scheduled to take place in 2018 and features double-headers set to be played on Dec. 15 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, Dec. 18 at Chicago’s United Center and Dec. 22 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. All four teams will be traveling together on a single chartered airplane.

“It’s a very cool idea,” Michigan State coach Tom Izzo told “At first I thought it was crazy, but it’s during break so we don’t miss any school. It’s three big games in a row, and with the ACC-Big Ten Challenge and other events [Champions Classic] we could have six or seven big games.”

While Izzo does appear to be all-in on the idea, it does bring up the question of whether or not Izzo will still be coaching the Spartans five years from now, when the event is scheduled to take place. Izzo is currently in his 19th season as the Spartans head coach, and has stated that he plans to finish his coaching career at Michigan State.

About Sean Merriman web editor Sean Merriman covers football and men’s basketball and provides original content for You can follow him on Twitter @BTNSean.


Your Opinion?
Show Comments (5 Comments)
ryan eaton on 2/12/2014 @ 7:34pm EDT Said:

interesting idea. the more big wins on your resume, the better.

B1Gfan MI on 2/12/2014 @ 7:43pm EDT Said:

By 2018 Izzo will turn 84. The next Aggie coach, Greg Kelser will be 75. How will they survive 3 games, cross country travel, and the prospect of beginning the B1G season with a 1 and 9 preseason record? What happened to Hollis big plan for “challenging” Oakland to a winner take all game aboard an iron ore freighter docked near Mackinaw Island?

Spartan in Los Angeles on 2/12/2014 @ 9:19pm EDT Said:

I will be at Staples cheering my Spartans on Feb 23 is shaping up to be the Big Ten championship thanks for the compliment on LSJ Doug way to stand your ground

Doug on 2/13/2014 @ 12:18am EDT Said:

no prob SILA, Mark is one obssessed individual

Spartan in Los Angeles on 2/13/2014 @ 8:20am EDT Said:

Btw Gores won’t succeed Doug Pancho is a lifer