Black & Blue Classic moved up a day for national TV

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Last year Richmond was the center of the college basketball world when both Richmond and VCU made the Sweet 16.  Next month, the nation will be able to turn their eyes to "Hoopstown USA" once again as the Spiders battle the Rams in their annual showdown.

The Farm Bureau Insurance Black & Blue Classic has been moved to Friday, Dec. 9 so that ESPN2 can carry the game live at 8 p.m.

The rivalry pitting two of the Sweet 16 teams from last March was originally scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 10, has been moved to the previous day to accommodate ESPN2. The rivalry game will still take place at the Verizon Wireless Arena at the Stuart C. Siegel Center.

The VCU-Richmond rivalry has a rich history that dates back to 1976. The Spiders led by as many as 30 (49-19) in last years win over the Rams in the Robins Center.

ESPN2's arrival onto the scene enhances VCU's impressive television package for the 2011-12 season. The Rams recently announced a partnership that allows to the school to broadcast all of its home games on ESPN3 this season. The ESPN3 deal notwithstanding, VCU will appear on ESPN's family of networks (ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU) a minimum of five times this year, a number that could grow to as many as nine. VCU is also part of the CAA's comprehensive television package with Comcast. The Comcast Network and Comcast SportsNet are scheduled to carry nine Ram games.

Richmond is now scheduled to appear on the ESPN family of networks four times, including two games on ESPN2. Richmond will appear on national TV nine times this season.

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