Game #9-023: Army vs. Virginia Military Institute KeydetsNovember 11, 2012 2:00 pm
College basketball's opening weekend happens to fall on Veteran's Day Weekend. Many of the promotions schools are doing have a military theme. Michigan State and UConn entertained military personnel at Ramstein Air Base in Germany whom otherwise might not get a chance to see college basketball live in person this season. Three games were scheduled on aircraft carriers before the teams involved learned that basketball was not designed as an outdoor sport. At the Winthrop game I was at Saturday
, the dance team threw on small camo basketballs into the crowd sponsored by the National Guard. But on this day of November 11, the traditional Veteran's Day celebrating the end of the first World War, the finals of the All-Military Classic would be held in Charleston. This was a tournament of four military schools: Air Force, Army, the Citadel, and VMI. Every Division I military school was invited with the exception of Navy, which will face arch-rival Army later in Patriot League action
.So the tournament would open with the games covered by Matt Cayuela on Saturday: Air Force-Army
. This first day would feature traditional rivals facing each other. Air Force and Army are both service academies that need a tournament like this to meet given the distance between the two academies. The Citadel and VMI are two regional military schools with a historic rivalry dating back to when they were both in the Southern Conference. Interestingly enough, as the VMI-Citadel basketball game was being played in Charleston the two schools were playing each other in American-style football in Lexington. Those games would lead to today's games of Army-VMI in the consolation game and Citadel-Air Force in the championship.