The Hawaiian island of Maui is synonymous with Thanksgiving week in the world college basketball,

The Maui Invitational is an institution in the sport, which has been held on the island since 1984 and has been dubbed “Best tournament of the season in the country — the standard by which all others are compared,” by Associated Press veteran Jim O’Connell.

Devastating wildfires have caused panic in the region in recent weeks. killed at least 111 people, Kansas head coach Bill Self Illinois Head coach Brad Underwood decided to do something to help with the relief efforts.

In a creative social media video posted Friday afternoon, Underwood confronted herself, the Hall of Famer and former Illinois head coach (2000-03). The two announced that the Jayhawks and Illini would play an exhibition contest open to the public on Sunday, October 29 at the State Farm Center. Proceeds from the game will be donated to the Hawaii Community Foundation Maui Strong Fund, which is providing financial resources to help the region recover from the tragedy.

It’s an excellent job by Self and Underwood bringing their programs together, and it could set a trend around college basketball ahead of the upcoming season. We’ve seen preseason exhibition games be used to aid relief efforts for other tragedies in years past, and this is the first major announcement regarding a donation to help the Maui community. Then again, this area is something extra special for the world of college hoops.

Self and the Jayhawks are scheduled to appear at the Maui Invitational for the sixth time this upcoming season, which is part of a field that includes zack eddy And Purdue, UCLA, Marquette, gonzaga, Tennessee, Syracuseand the local Chaminade University.

Self said, “For decades, the Maui Invitational and the city of Lahaina have been so important to college basketball and our thoughts and prayers are with that entire community as they recover from such a tragic event.” “(Illinois coach Brad Underwood) and I discussed how our private scrimmage could become an exhibition game to raise money to benefit the many people affected by the recent wildfires in Maui. We both realized that This will be a great way to build our programs and awareness to help this cause. The people of Maui have always made our stay here an attraction of a lifetime.”

“It is heartbreaking to see the loss of life and devastation from the fires that have devastated Lahaina,” Underwood said. “The Maui Invitational is an integral part of college basketball, and we are thinking of everyone on the island of Maui who felt the impact of this tragedy. Bill and I immediately talked about how we could help come together, and end our run Participating in a charity exhibition is one way we can use our sport to make an impact. The appeal of the sport, enhanced by Bill’s return to champagne , should raise meaningful dollars that will go directly to help the Lahaina community.”

Self-coached the Illini for three seasons, taking the school to the Elite Eight in Year 1, the Sweet 16 in Year 2, and the Second Round in 2003. He went 78–24 in those three campaigns before taking the job at Lawrence, where he is now entering his 21st season.

Has made a big transfer portal splash by including All-American hunter dickinsonwelcome back as well dajuan harris, Kevin McCullers And KJ AdamsThe Jayhawks may be the preseason No. 1 team in college basketball. i have kansas at the moment,

Meanwhile, Illinois also has a Top 25 team ranked with an All-Big Ten first-team selection. Terence Shannon Jr. back to lead the guards, and the big man coleman hawkins Returning to charge the frontcourt.

ex dickinson returns to champagne Michigan Man, must muster up some extra energy at the State Farm Center, too.

It’s a slam dunk by Kansas and Illinois, and a special way to bring the two programs together to raise money for a cause near and dear to college basketball.

The game begins on October 29 at 5PM ET and will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.

John Fanta is a national college basketball broadcaster and writer for Fox Sports. He covers sports in various capacities, ranging from calling games on FS1 to serving as lead host on the Big East Digital Network to providing on-field commentary for the 68 Media Network. Follow him on Twitter @john_fanta,

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