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Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tip-Off Marathon tweaked after cancellation

By Diamond Leung

Hawaii was forced to cancel its traditional Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic tournament to open the season, and that is causing a change in ESPN's annual Tip-Off Marathon programming.

The South Alabama-Hawaii game was to have been the third game in the marathon, but since the Rainbow Classic has been canceled, a game between Cal State Northridge and Hawaii at the 4 a.m. E.T. time slot on Nov. 15 has been scheduled instead.

"This should be a really fun home game," Hawaii coach Gib Arnold said in a statement. "It's always nice to play on ESPN and the late-night atmosphere is going to be great for both our players and students.

"Unfortunately one of the teams in this year's Classic bowed out late, and the remaining two teams did not agree to the replacements we presented them. We had to move on; however, we look forward to hosting the Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic next year."

One of the teams from a Rainbow Classic field that also included Illinois-Chicago and San Diego withdrew in recent weeks, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, forcing the tournament to go on hiatus after having been played 47 times.

Cal State Northridge, which is ineligible for the postseason due to Academic Progress Rate penalties, gets an unexpected trip to Hawaii and national television appearance.

Hawaii is entering its final season in the WAC before leaving for the Big West, which includes Cal State Northridge.