The Field Is Set for The Basketball Tournament

The Basketball Tournament (TBT) Releases Field and Matchups for 2023 Louisville Regional

Region Hosted by Louisville Alumni Team The Ville Also Features Alumni Teams from Auburn, Florida, and Maryland

 Russ Smith’s Mr. & Mrs. Bourbon to be Official Spirit of Louisivlle Regional

Louisville, KY, June 21, 2023 – The Basketball Tournament (TBT) – the $1 million, winner-take-all summer basketball event broadcast live on ESPN networks – today announced the bracket for this year’s tournament.

The Ville, the Louisville alumni team, will serve as the featured team for one of TBT’s eight regionals, and compete against seven other teams for the chance to advance closer to TBT’s $1 million prize. The games, which will take place July 25-29, will be played at Freedom Hall. TBT will also host a quarterfinals game at Freedom Hall, which will be played July 31.

Mr. & Mrs. Bourbon, created by legendary Louisville point guard Russ Smith, will serve as the official spirit of the Louisville Regional. Mr. & Mrs. Bourbon has been on shelves across Kentucky for just under two years, and after recently selling out, Smith has re-released his original labels and is introducing three new labels. Smith is kicking off a public appearance tour across Kentucky that runs through July 23rd and will be signing bottles at bars and liquor stores statewide.

The Ville, the number two seed in the Louisville Regional, is organized by Louisville based company Wasteology. The Ville staff will feature Louisville men’s basketball coaches Mark Lieberman and Jordan Sucher, former Louisville basketball player Luke Hancock, and renowned trainer Ronnie Taylor. The Ville’s roster currently includes:

  • Rakeem Buckles (2009-12)
  • Peyton Siva (2009-13)
  • Russ Smith (2010-14)
  • Chane Behanan (2011-13)
  • Wayne Blackshear (2011-15)
  • Chinanu Onuaku (2014-16)
  • Dillon Avare (2014-16)
  • Chris Dowe (Bellarmine)
  • Nick Mayo (Eastern Kentucky)
  • Omar Prewitt (William & Mary)

The rest of the region includes:

  • #1 seed Gutter Cat Gang: Named after the popular NFT community, this 2022 TBT quarterfinalist features Kyle Hines, the most decorated American in European basketball history.
  • #3 seed Eberlein Drive: A 10-year TBT participant, Eberlein Drive features Louisvile native and Western Kentucky star A.J. Slaughter, fellow Hilltopper Justin Johnson, and former NBA player and Kentucky alum Archie Goodwin.
  • #4 seed Shell Shock (Maryland alumni): Representing the University of Maryland, Shell Shock includes well-known college stars like Melo Trimble and Darryl Morsell.
  • #5 seed Gataverse (Florida alumni): This University of Florida alumni team includes well known former Gators, such as 13-year NBA veteran Corey Brewer.
  • #6 seed Jackson TN Underdawgs: Wearing a chip on their shoulders, the Jackson TN Underdawgs head into their sixth TBT looking to play spoiler once again.
  • #7 seed War Ready (Auburn alumni): The Auburn alumni team features multiple players from the 2018 Auburn Final Four team.
  • #8 seed Georgia Kingz: Georgia Kingz secured their place in the Louisville Regional via buy-in.

Second-seeded The Ville will take on the #7 seed War Ready in the team’s first-round game on Tuesday, July 25 at 7 pm ET. If The Ville advances to the second round, they will face the winner of #4 seed Shell Shock and #5 seed Gataverse on Thursday, July 27 at 8 pm ET. The Louisville Regional championship game will be Saturday, July 29 at 12 pm ET.

The Louisville regional winner will take on the Lubbock Regional winner in TBT’s quarterfinals game at Freedom Hall on Monday, July 31 at 9 pm CE. The winner of that game will advance to TBT’s semifinals in Philadelphia on Wednesday, August 2, and the $1M winner-take-all championship game will also be in Philadelphia on Thursday, August 3.

Tickets for the Louisville Regional are on sale now. Fans purchasing tickets will also have the option of purchasing a ticket upgrade to be a part of two meet and greet opportunities with Russ Smith, which will take place following The Ville’s game on July 25, as well as July 27.  The meet and greet session will take place approximately 30 minutes after the end of the 7:00pm game in the President’s Room of Freedom Hall. In addition to the Meet & Greet, a tasting of Russ Smith’s Mr. & Mrs. Bourbon will be offered. Reserved seat tickets are required for entry in addition to the meet & greet ticket. One lucky meet & greet attendee will win the use of an Executive Suite for the July 27th games. Reserve seat tickets will be required to attend the July 27th games and are not included with the suite.

To purchase tickets, visit the links below.