KU will face Duke in Vegas Showdown

Kansas head coach Bill Self signals to players during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Texas Tech, Monday, Feb. 12, 2024, in Lubbock, Texas.

The Kansas men’s basketball team will face Duke at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena on Nov. 26, ESPN Events announced Thursday afternoon.

The matchup is part of ESPN’s second annual Vegas Showdown, a doubleheader that also features a matchup between Seattle and Furman, and then has Duke hosting Seattle and KU hosting Furman at their home arenas the following weekend.

The Paladins will come to Lawrence on Nov. 30.

“We are proud to bring these four teams and their fan bases to Las Vegas to experience great basketball and world class entertainment and hospitality,” said Clint Overby, vice president of ESPN Events, in a press release.

KU trails Duke 8-5 in the all-time series. Last season, the Blue Devils went 27-9 and upset Houston before falling to NC State in the Elite Eight.

The teams play every third year as part of the Champions Classic and so will do so again during the 2025-26 season. This year’s Champions Classic has KU facing Michigan State in Atlanta on Nov. 12.

Furman is a less familiar opponent for the Jayhawks, as the teams played just once more than two decades ago, when KU won 101-60 at Allen Fieldhouse. The Paladins, a year removed from beating Virginia in the NCAA Tournament, were 17-16 during the 2023-24 campaign and lost in the semifinals of their conference tournament.

KU’s nonconference schedule continues to fill out, with the Jayhawks also slated to host North Carolina on Nov. 8, face Creighton in Omaha on Dec. 4 and travel to Missouri for the Border Showdown in December.

Also on Thursday, Matt Norlander of CBS Sports reported that KU will battle another Atlantic Coast Conference opponent towards the latter end of its nonconference schedule when it hosts NC State on Dec. 14, with an expected return date at PNC Arena in 2025.

The Jayhawks will play 20 conference games this year as part of the Big 12 Conference’s recent expansion, and CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein reported on Monday that the league schedule will begin on Dec. 30 and 31.


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