Already possessing four postseason appearances, Tim Cluess and Iona get greater exposure this season by competing in ESPN's 24-hour marathon to open season, an event which will also feature Manhattan. (Photo courtesy of the New York Daily News)
Iona and Manhattan have come to define not just the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, but also mid-major college basketball in the New York metropolitan area. Therefore, the inclusion of both schools in ESPN's annual 24-hour marathon should come as no surprise to either program, or its rabid fan bases for that matter.
The 2014 College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon will begin at 7 p.m. on Monday, November 17, but the Gaels will be featured twelve hours later, traveling to Wofford to return a game against the reigning Southern Conference champion Terriers on Tuesday morning, November 18 in a 7 a.m. contest. Iona handily defeated Wofford at the Hynes Center last season in their home opener, but Tim Cluess' squad will no longer feature Sean Armand after the sharpshooter graduated last year, leaving David Laury, A.J. English and Isaiah Williams to pick up where the New Rochelle dynasty has left off.
Not to be outdone, the team that defeated Iona for the MAAC championship will be in action on the morning of the 18th as well, as Manhattan has landed an intriguing matchup against Derek Kellogg and Massachusetts. The battle of two NCAA Tournament teams will see the Minutemen welcome Steve Masiello and the Jaspers to the Mullins Center in Amherst for an 11 a.m. soiree, with both schools having to replace their point guards; as not only will Manhattan need to find a successor to Michael Alvarado, but UMass must now also adjust to life without the lightning-quick Chaz Williams.
A complete schedule of the 2014 ESPN College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon can be found by clicking here: