June 15, 2012
WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University men's basketball team will play the University of Florida as part of the Navy-Marine Corps Challenge during Veteran's Day weekend at Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville, Fla. The game will be played on Friday, Nov. 9 in Jacksonville. A tip time will be announced at a later date and the game is expected to be broadcast on national television.
The announcement for the game was made by Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus and Mark Lamping, President of the National Football League's Jacksonville Jaguars, whose team will help lead in the city's week-long military appreciation activities.
"It is a tremendous honor for our team to be involved with an event that will recognize the contributions of the United States Navy and all of our military," Head Coach John Thompson III said. "It will be an incredible learning experience for all involved with our program. We appreciate the opportunity to participate in this historic game with Florida in Jacksonville."
The game will be played at Naval Station Mayport, one of three major Navy installations in the Jacksonville area. Since its commissioning in December 1942, Naval Station Mayport has grown to become the third largest fleet concentration area in the United States.
"This is a unique way to say thank you to our military while putting Jacksonville on display for countless sports fans tuning in from all over the globe," said Mayor Brown. "My staff, especially Sports and Entertainment Director Alan Verlander and the military affairs department, worked tirelessly on the details of this high-profile event to ensure a quality product that would boost Jacksonville's profile as one of America's most military-friendly cities."
Mayor Brown has prioritized an increase of support for Jacksonville's military and veterans communities by elevating military affairs to a cabinet-level position. He launched Jobs for Veterans, a public-private partnership with more than 77 participating companies offering workforce information and jobs to help military men and women transition to civilian life. Roughly one of every four people in Jacksonville has a connection to the military and the city's military installations together are responsible for more than $14 billion in regional economic impact.
Proceeds from this event will benefit programs supporting Mayor Brown and Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan's vision for transitional housing for veterans.
"The Navy is excited to work with the city of Jacksonville and Naval Station Mayport to bring the Navy-Marine Corps Classic to the First Coast," Mabus said. "The Navy is America's Away Team; when we are on the job, we operate forward around the globe and often out of sight of the American people. This is a unique opportunity to showcase the Navy, and to join together to honor our veterans and active duty military."
Georgetown's game with Florida will be just the fifth meeting between the programs, the last matchup a 57-53 Gator win during the Sweet 16 of the 2006 NCAA Tournament. Both teams advanced to the 2007 Final Four but were on opposite sides of the bracket. The all-time series record between the teams is tied at two wins apiece. The Hoyas won the first two games and the Gators have won the last two.
This game will be the second for the 2012-13 season against a team from the Southeastern Conference, as Georgetown will host Tennessee at Verizon Center on Friday, Nov. 30 as part of the SEC-BIG EAST Challenge.