Michigan State, Gonzaga to play in 2022 Armed Forces Classic


MSU point guard A.J. Hoggard gets high-fived by head coach Tom Izzo in the Spartans 90-46 win over Western Michigan on Nov. 12, 2021/ Photo Credit: Sarah Smith/WDBM

Luca Melloni, Sports Editorial Assistant

EAST LANSING – For the first time since 2011, the Michigan State men’s basketball team will play on an aircraft carrier off the coast of San Diego for the 2022 Armed Forces Classic against Gonzaga. On Wednesday, CBS Sports revealed that the Spartans and the Bulldogs will face off on the USS Abraham Lincoln on Veteran’s Day. 

ESPN will broadcast the game on November 11, which will be a primetime showing as the two sides tip-off while the sun sets over the West Coast. 

The last time the Spartans played on an aircraft carrier was against North Carolina in 2011, where the Spartans fell 67-55 on the USS Carl Vinson. Harrison Barnes recorded 17 points in that game for the Tar Heels while former U.S. President Barack Obama sat courtside. 

Draymond Green recorded a career-high 18 rebounds at the time against the Tar Heels.

Hosting games aboard an aircraft carrier is not expected to be an annual event moving forward, according to CBS Sports.