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UNC Basketball: The Tar Heels will face off against UConn in the Jimmy V Classic

Carolina takes on defending champions UConn in the world’s most famous arena.

NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament - East Regional Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

Carolina’s non-conference schedule is coming into focus with a date now set for a showdown with last season’s national champion Connecticut.

UNC will play in Madison Square Garden for the second straight year. Last season, the Tar Heels beat Ohio State in an overtime thriller as part of the CBS Sports Classic. This year, they will take on UConn on December 5th, while Florida Atlantic takes on Illinois in the other half of the double-header.

Hubert Davis, who began his NBA career with the Knicks, has stated that he wants Carolina to plant roots in New York. R.J. Davis, Ian Jackson, and Elliot Cadeau all have New York ties, and the Big Apple consistently puts out some of the top players in the country. And all of them want a chance to play in the world’s most famous arena.

UConn will be a tough test for the Tar Heels. Adama Sanogo is gone, but they can match Armando Bacot for size with 7’2” 265 lbs Donovan Clingan and return two starters from a team that won all six of their NCAA Tournament games by double-digits. The Huskies are tough, shot-makers and will require UNC to play with full intensity and concentration.

Since Carolina and UConn are playing in the Jimmy V Classic, ESPN will be fundraising for the V Foundation to benefit cancer research. Last year, ESPN set a single-week record, raising $14.4 million. Hopefully with the Tar Heels on TV, they can do even better.