WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) – The bracket for the 31st annual EA Sports Maui Invitational, played Thanksgiving week at the Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Hawai’i, has been announced.
The Boilermakers will play in the tournament’s first game on Monday, Nov. 24, at 9:30 AM (HT) / 2:30 PM (ET) against Big 12 Conference member, Kansas State. It will mark the first meeting against the Wildcats since an 81-77 Kansas State win on Nov. 26, 1988.
Kansas State leads the all-time series, 6-2. However, only the last four meetings have come in the last 44 years.
Kansas State went 20-13 a year ago and returns three starters that dropped a 56-49 decision to eventual national runner-up Kentucky in the NCAA Tournament Second Round. Leading the Wildcats will be sophomore Marcus Foster, who averaged 15.5 points per game and made 79-of-200 (.395) three-point attempts a year ago. Thomas Gipson (11.7 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 56.2 FG %) and Wesley Iwundu (6.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg) are the other returning starters for the ‘Cats.
Leading the Wildcats is Bruce Weber, who was a long-time assistant coach at Purdue (1981-98) under legendary coach Gene Keady. He then took the head coaching job at Southern Illinois, where current Purdue head coach Matt Painter was an assistant under Weber from 1998-03. Weber left to take the Illinois vacancy, while Painter took over the Southern Illinois reigns in 2004. Painter and Weber then coached against each other while Weber was at Illinois from 2004 to 2012.
The matchup with Kansas State means Purdue will face off against two long-time assistant coaches as the Boilermakers face Kevin Stallings of Vanderbilt on Dec. 13 in Nashville. Stallings was an assistant coach at Purdue from 1983-88.
Purdue’s second game will come against either SEC-member Missouri or Pac-12 power Arizona at either 9 AM (HT) / 2 PM (ET) or 2:30 PM (HT) / 7:30 PM (ET). The other side of the bracket has BYU vs. San Diego State and Pittsburgh vs. the host school Chaminade.