College basketball fans across the nation sacrificed sleep for sports Tuesday, choosing to stay up for ESPN’s College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon. Missouri junior guard Kim English was one of the faithful viewers.
For the third year, the family of ESPN channels hosts its 25-hour barrage of basketball featuring 21 games (20 men’s matchups as well as a showdown between the top two women’s teams in the nation, No. 1 Connecticut and No. 2 Baylor).
“All night,” English said, referring to the time he spent watching the marathon. He then rattled off the games in order of their appearance on TV.
English said he even tuned in early to watch the preview show.
After watching Memphis vs. Miami and St. John’s vs. St. Mary’s, English admitted to dozing off through Central Michigan vs. Hawaii and Stony Brook vs. Monmouth. He woke up Tuesday morning in time for the second half of Northeastern vs. Southern Illinois, and then caught one half of the Oral Roberts vs. Tulsa game.
“I’m excited to practice today (Tuesday). I was watching all that stuff last night just excited to practice,” English said. He added that the feeling of watching the marathon reminded him of watching the NCAA Tournament while he was in high school.
The team’s pre-practice weightlifting session Tuesday afternoon kept English from watching Big 12 opponent Baylor’s 74-64 win over La Salle. The Tigers could end up playing La Salle in the upcoming Cancun Challenge tournament that begins Thursday when Western Illinois comes to Mizzou Arena.
“We had weights, so I didn’t get to see it. I heard it was zone versus zone,” English said.
Practice followed weights, so English also had to miss Kansas State beating Virginia Tech 73-57, but his post-practice plans were already scheduled. When he got home, English made sure to see Ohio State beat Florida 93-75 and the Connecticut women’s team defeat the Baylor women’s team 65-64.
With all the games English watched on Tuesday, he said the game footage for Western Illinois was most important.
“We are watching Western Illinois tape. That’s the only game we truly care about,” English said.