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CBS and CBS Sports Network will broadcast 14 NCAA Division II basketball games in 2014-15, beginning with defending men's national champion University of Central Missouri hosting Northeastern State University Dec. 20 and concluding with the 2015 men's national championship March 28. Each national broadcast will also stream live on NCAA.com and the NCAA Sports mobile app.
The inaugural Division II military "Salute" game highlights the 2014-15 regular season schedule and brings together Peach Belt Conference rivals Lander University and Georgia Regents University, on Feb. 21, in a partnership with U.S. Army installation Fort Gordon in Augusta, Georgia.
"We are grateful to CBS Sports Network for allowing us to be a part of their television schedule this year," said GRU Director of Athletics Clint Bryant. "We have great student athletes and this televised event will give national exposure to our program, athletic department, and university."
The "Operation JAGMAW" (Jaguar Military Appreciation Week) homecoming event on Georgia Regent's University's campus will feature all nine colleges of the university engaged in military initiatives throughout homecoming week, including the unveiling of a game day Ring of Honor for Fort Gordon soldiers. A swearing in ceremony will occur at halftime during the game and, in addition to other joint initiatives, each team will wear military-themed uniforms to be auctioned, the funds from which will benefit military families. Fans will receive free camouflaged shirts as well as handheld American Flags upon entry.
"GRU's military appreciation game has become an annual tradition for us, and we're grateful for their support of our service members and families," said Col. Samuel Anderson, the Fort Gordon garrison commander. "Now that our partnership with GRU and the NCAA is becoming more formalized, we look forward to a closer relationship with the university that benefits the student body and our military community. It should be a great game and a great milestone in the Army's evolving partnership with the NCAA."
Earlier this year, Division II established a pilot program partnering a conference and its schools with neighboring military installations to demonstrate the advantages and benefits of linking schools, student-athletes, military installations and local communities together. The Peach Belt Conference, Georgia Regents University and Fort Gordon are charter members of the growing initiative.
"College sports and the military share similar values and we both work to train and prepare future leaders," said Terri Steeb Gronau, vice president of Division II. "In Division II, we believe our longstanding commitment to community and the military's appreciation in promoting education, leadership and service make for unique opportunities of joint engagement."
The 2014-15 Division II television schedule opens Dec. 20 with Central Missouri hosting Northeastern State in a Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association men's basketball matchup. Central Missouri will defend its 2014 national title against a Riverhawks program that won the Division II title in 2003.
On Jan. 3, defending Conference Carolinas men's basketball regular season champion Mount Olive University will square off against King University in Bristol, Tennessee. Mount Olive has won or shared the regular season conference title four times in the last seven years, while King reached last year's tournament final.
The third game of the regular season schedule pits Lynn University at Saint Leo University in a Sunshine State Conference men's basketball contest on Jan. 18. Saint Leo has earned NCAA Tournament berths each of the last three seasons, including South Region Semifinal appearances in 2013 and 2014. Lynn returns 11 members from last year's squad.
In South Atlantic Conference play, Anderson University (SC) travels to Queens University of Charlotte (NC) for a women's and men's regular season doubleheader on Jan. 24 inside the state-of-the-art Levine Center, a new 145,000 square-foot wellness and recreation complex. The Anderson men reached the NCAA Southeast Region Quarterfinals a season ago.
Bentley University, the defending Division II women's basketball champion, carries a 35-game win streak into the 2014-15 basketball season after capping off a perfect campaign a year ago. The Falcons host St. Michael's College in a Northeast-10 Conference matchup on Feb. 14.
Lander and Georgia Regents will meet Feb. 21 in the Division II Military Salute Game. Georgia Regents has won more than 85 percent of its home games since the start of the 2006-07 season and is coming off an appearance in the 2014 NCAA Southeast Regional Semifinal.
The regular season Game of the Week schedule concludes in the East Coast Conference with a women's matchup between Roberts Wesleyan College and Long Island University/LIU Post in Brookville, New York, on March 1. After reaching the NCCAA semifinals last season, Roberts Wesleyan enters its first season eligible for postseason play as a new member of Division II. LIU Post reached last year's NCAA East Regional final.
Both the men's and women's Division II semifinal games will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network, March 25 and 26. The women's championship will air from The Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, March 27 on CBS Sports Network, while CBS will broadcast the men's championship from The Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana, on March 28.
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