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The SEC/Big East Challenge officially expands

Credit Adam Zagoria with the scoop.

He wrote last Saturday that the SEC/Big East Invitational was going to expand to include 12 teams from each league, and that it will be held in on campus venues as opposed to neutral sites locations.

Its now official. From a press release on the Big East’s website:

The new BIG EAST/SEC Challenge format will feature 12 games over three days beginning on the Thursday after Thanksgiving of each year. The 2011 schedule will include four games a day Thursday, Dec. 1 through Saturday, Dec. 3. The event title will alternate to the SEC/BIG EAST Challenge in 2012 and be played Thursday, Nov. 29 through Saturday, Dec. 1.

All 12 games each year will be played at home campus sites with each conference hosting six games a year. SEC teams will alternate home and away games. Twelve of the 16 BIG EAST teams (17 teams in the second year) will participate each year with home, road and no-game assignments determined for 2011 and 2012 in advance of the 2011 event. Matchups, times and network assignments are to be determined.

This is great.

Seriously, I couldn’t have designed this any better myself.

Twelve games are being played, and they are being played over the course of three days. Four games a night on a Thursday, Friday, and Saturday during an otherwise slow period in college hoops. The games will be on ESPN, and I’m sure they will hype it just as much as they hype the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

There’s more.

The SEC/Big East Challenge will be taking place the week after Thanksgiving. The ACC/Big Ten Challenge does as well, spanning from Monday to Wednesday. That means that a full week on the Worldwide Leader will be dedicated to conference’s earning bragging rights.

That’s amazing.

It sounds like the NCAA reads what I write.

Now if only we could get the Big XII and the Pac 10 to just get along.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @ballinisahabit.