North Texas traveled just a few miles last fall to face UMass in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Classic.

The trip will be quite a bit longer when the Mean Green take on the Minutemen in the rematch this fall. The game will be played on Dec. 17 at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Massachusetts.

UNT won the first game in the home-and-home series 66-57 at Dickies Arena in December in Fort Worth.

The time and site for this season’s game was announced on Wednesday.

McCasland mug

Grant McCasland

“We’re excited to be part of one of college basketball’s premiere events,” UNT coach Grant McCasland said. “At North Texas we strive to compete at the highest level and to do so on a historic national stage makes it even better. Many thanks to the Naismith Hall of Fame for the opportunity.”

UNT won the Conference USA West Division title last season, when the Mean Green finished 25-7 and set a program record for wins in a season.

UNT was upset by Louisiana Tech in the semifinals of the C-USA tournament. The Mean Green were passed over for an at-large berth in the NCAA tournament but received a bid to the National Invitation Tournament.

UNT beat Texas State in the opening round before falling to Virginia.

The Mean Green led the nation in scoring defense with an average of 55.7 points allowed per game in the 2021-22 campaign.

UNT returns its leading scorer in Tylor Perry, who averaged 13.5 points per game while coming off the bench. The Mean Green also have starting point guard Rubin Jones and forward Abou Ousmane back for another season.

McCasland and his staff have added four newcomers to that core, including Dayton transfer forward Moulaye Sissoko.

UMass finished 15-17 last season and fell to Dayton in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 tournament.

BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870 and via Twitter at @brettvito.

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