Monday, October 1, 2012

MAAC Preseason Shows To Get ESPN3 Coverage

It's a new world, and the MAAC is reacting to it with the result being a greater visibility for conference fans.

The latest case is the event that, at one time, was known as the MAAC's basketball media day, an exercise that brought together all 20 coaches (men's and women's) and a few select players to be available for a sizeable media turnout. Preseason Player of the Year picks, as determined by a vote of coaches, will also be revealed.

Preseason all-star selections, though, will be revealed earlier, on Oct. 30 through the traditional media outlets. Players named first-team preseason all-stars will be eligible to be named as preseason Player of the Year choices.

For many years the event took place in New York City. Last year, the day, which no longer went by the name Media Day, but the "MAAC Basketball Preseason Awards Show," took place in Springfield, Mass.

The evolution now, though, is that the show has moved to television, which makes it available not just to those in attendance, who spread the news of happenings of the day via the variety of media outlets, but, now, to any fan who cares to tune in.

This year's MAAC Basketball Preseason Awards Shows will be held on Friday, Nov. 9 and will air live on ESPN3.

The women's show will at 5:15 p.m. that day and be held at Marist's McCann Arena. The Red Foxes will display their 2012 MAAC Championship banner. The traditional coaches' preseason poll, all-star selections and preseason Player of the Year choice will be announced. Following the completion of the show, the Marist women will take on Vermont in their season home opener (6 p.m.), a non-league contest.

The men's show will begin at 8:15 p.m., live from Iona's Hynes Athletics Center. The Gaels will display their 2012 NCAA tournament at-large appearance banner, and the preseason polls and award choices will also be revealed. The show will be followed by an Iona men's game in which the Gaels open Denver to open their season.

"The shows are the next step in the evolution of the league's relationship with ESPN3," said conference commissioner Rich Ensor, in a release issued by the league. "The opportunity to showcase the men's and women's basketball programs to a national audience builds upon an event that, in the day, was limited to media and a few guests and now reaches into over 73 million homes.

"The public will become better acquainted with the MAAC student-athletes and coaches, who are leaders and educators of their programs. In addition, the MAAC will honor teams from the 2012 season that participated in NCAA post-season competition and will immediately have an opportunity to measure their 2013 potential as the teams compete in key non-conference match-ups on the first official day of competition for the 2012-13 season."

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