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UNC opens play in home-state Maui Invitational against UNLV

North Carolina will begin play in the relocated Maui Invitational by facing UNLV in the Tar Heels’ home state as the tournament begins Nov. 30.

The tournament announced its eight-team bracket and three-day schedule Wednesday, nearly three weeks after saying it would move from its traditional setting in Hawaii to Asheville, North Carolina, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

That means a shorter trip for the Tar Heels and fellow North Carolina-based program Davidson, which faces Texas in the tournament’s opening matchup.

Indiana and Providence meet in Game 2, followed by UNC-UNLV and finally Stanford against Alabama to close the first day. The championship will be played Dec. 2.

The tournament is one of the premier early season tournaments on the college basketball schedule and typically runs during the three days leading up to Thanksgiving. But it will begin the following week because the NCAA has delayed the start of this year’s season to Nov. 25.

All teams, staff, officials and ESPN personnel will be in a bubble environment that limits their movement and interaction outside the venue.

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