Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off Announces 2019 Bracket

Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off Announces 2019 Bracket

July 10, 2019

FORT MYERS, Fla. (July 10, 2019) – Pitt will take on Kansas State and Northwestern will face Bradley in the 2019 Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans Fort Myers Tip-Off, as announced by event organizer Intersport on Wednesday. The second-annual event will be held November 25 and 27 at Suncoast Credit Union Arena in Fort Myers, Fla.

Each semifinal matchup will feature an NCAA Tournament participant from this past March, with Bradley claiming the Missouri Valley Tournament title and K-State securing the Big 12 Championship. Additionally, Northwestern and Pitt bring back significant contributors from last season’s squads with the aim of returning to postseason play in 2020.

All four games of the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off will be televised live on FS1. Game times will be announced at a later date.

Northwestern owns an 8-1 all-time edge in the series with Bradley, but it was the Braves who earned a 76-72 win in the most recent meeting between the programs in 1985. Fresh off its first MVC Tournament title in 31 years, Bradley will take on a Wildcat program that welcomes one the most highly anticipated recruiting classes under seventh-year coach Chris Collins.

Pitt and K-State have faced only once, with the Panthers defeating the Wildcats 70-47 in Maui in 2014. The reigning Big 12 Champions, K-State has put together consecutive 25-win seasons for the first time in program history, and will face a Pitt squad led by sophomore Xavier Johnson, who was named to the 2019 ACC All-Freshman Team in a conference loaded with Top 100 recruits.

The Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off has quickly become a staple of the Southwest Florida sports calendar, and this year’s programs will only add to that excitement. Overall, the teams of the 2019 Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off boast a combined 111 postseason tournament appearances, including 67 NCAA Tournament bids, seven Final Four berths and 48 conference championships. Bradley and K-State each claimed their respective conference championships a season ago, with the Braves clinching the Missouri Valley Tournament and the Wildcats winning the Big 12 title. Bradley (Cancun Challenge), K-State (Paradise Jam) and Pitt (Barclays Classic) each won their respective preseason tournaments to help kick off the 2018-19 campaign.

The programs are led by coaches with winning pedigrees. K-State’s Bruce Weber (Illinois), Northwestern’s Collins (Duke) and Pitt’s Jeff Capel (Duke) have all helped guide teams to National Championship games during their coaching careers, and Bradley’s Brian Wardle enters the 2019-20 season ranked second among Division I coaches younger than 40 with 153 career victories.

Travel packages are now available for fans looking to join their favorite team in beautiful Southwest Florida this November. Packages include tickets to each tournament game, hotel accommodations and parking at Suncoast Credit Union Arena. For complete travel package information, log on to www.fortmyerstipoff.com/travel. Ticket-only packages, based on availability, will become available in September.

To receive the latest email alerts regarding tournament news, ticket information and more, visit our website at www.fortmyerstipoff.com/contact. Fans can also follow the tournament on Twitter at @FTMyersTipOff.

Semifinal Matchups

Pitt vs. K-State

  • Series Record: Pitt leads, 1-0
  • Last Matchup: Nov. 26, 2014 (Pitt 70, K-State 47)
  • Notable: The only prior meeting between the teams came during the 2014 Maui Invitational … K-State Coach Bruce Weber led Team USA to the FIBA U19 World Cup this summer, defeating the team from Mali, which featured Pitt freshman Karim Coulibaly, in the championship game.

Northwestern vs. Bradley

  • Series Record: Northwestern leads, 8-1
  • Last Matchup: Nov. 30, 1985 (Bradley 76, Northwestern 72)
  • Notable: This will be the first matchup between the two programs in nearly 34 years, and fourth since 1938 … This will be the first neutral-site contest in the series history.

Quotes from Participating Head Coaches

Bradley Head Coach Brian Wardle:

“We are really looking forward to our trip in November for the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off. Not only will it provide us with great competition on the court, but as a program with nine newcomers this season, it will also help us grow off the court and continue to build our team chemistry.”

K-State Head Coach Bruce Weber:

“We are looking forward to playing in the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off and enjoying the warm weather of the Florida Gulf Coast. We always want to challenge our team in the preseason with quality competition and this field should provide a tremendous test for us. Coupled with the on-court competition and the off-the-court activities, we expect this to be a great experience for our team in 2019.”

Northwestern Head Coach Chris Collins:

“We are thrilled to be participating in the Fort Myers Tip-Off. It’s quickly emerging as one of the premier holiday tournaments with a competitive field and a spectacular venue. Every year our program aims to win a title in our early-season tournament, and what better place to try and accomplish that goal than in paradise. We are looking forward to seeing a lot of Northwestern fans in Florida this November.”

Pitt Head Coach Jeff Capel:

“The Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off is an exciting event with a terrific field. Early-season tournaments with high-caliber participants provide a great opportunity to build a foundation for the season. Coach Weber has an outstanding program at Kansas State and we look forward to the challenge of competing against them as we continue to build our culture here at Pitt.”

Travel Package Information

Travel packages are now available for fans looking to join their favorite team in beautiful Southwest Florida this November. Packages include tickets to each tournament game, hotel accommodations and parking at Suncoast Credit Union Arena. For complete travel package information, log on to www.fortmyerstipoff.com/travel. Ticket-only packages, based on availability, will become available in September.

With luxury resorts Sanibel Harbour Marriott Resort and Spa and Westin Cape Coral Resort and Spa serving as host hotels, fans will have the opportunity to stay where the teams stay and experience resort life to the fullest. The Bradley and K-State travel parties will stay at the Westin Cape Coral, and the Northwestern and Pitt travel parties will stay at the Sanibel Harbour Marriott. Additionally, the Pink Shell Beach Resort and Marina, a Condé Nast Traveler 2018 Reader’s Choice winner, is located directly on Fort Myers Beach, offering the perfect beachside complement for fans looking for the complete vacation experience. Three-, four- and five-night itineraries are available at each of the event’s three host hotels.

About Intersport

Since 1985, Intersport has been an award-winning innovator and leader in the creation of sports, lifestyle, culinary and entertainment-based marketing platforms. With expertise in Sponsorship Consulting, Experiential Marketing, Hospitality, Retail Engagement, Content Marketing, Productions and Property Creation, this Chicago-based Marketing & Media Solutions Company helps its clients engage consumers with compelling ideas, content and experiences.  To learn more about Intersport, visit www.intersport.global, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

About the Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans Fort Myers Tip-Off

Launched in 2018, the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off brings the nation’s top college basketball programs together for two days of incredible competition to see which team and their fans will #OwnTheFort during Thanksgiving Week. Contested at Suncoast Credit Union Arena, the $28 million home of Florida SouthWestern State College, the four-team tournament has quickly become a staple of the Southwest Florida sports calendar. For more information on the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off, please visit www.fortmyerstipoff.com.

Contact:

Dan Mihalik, Intersport, dmihalik@interport.global, 312-883-3998