Former Rocket Jaelan Sanford will compete in the 2019 USA Basketball Men’s 3×3 National Championship Friday and Saturday, May 3-4, in Las Vegas.
Sanford will be part of the Mid-American Conference’s 3×3 squad that placed third in the Dos Equis 3X3U National Championship at the Mall of America in early April.The Evansville, Ind., native will be joined by Larry Austin Jr. (Central Michigan), Tayler Persons (Ball State) and Jaylin Walker (Kent State).
Sanford averaged 5.3 points per game in seven games in the 3X3U event while shooting 53.6 percent (15 of 28) from three-point range.
A two-time All-MAC selection, Sanford completed his senior season at Toledo in March by leading the Rockets to a second-straight outright MAC West Division title, an NIT appearance, and the second most wins (25) in a season in program history.
The free, public event will be held for the first time outdoors at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center. The USA 3×3 Nationals will tip off with preliminary games from 3 to -10:30 p.m. Pacific Time Friday, May 3. The preliminary round will continue from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Pacific Time Saturday, May 4, and, after teams are seeded based on preliminary records, the knockout round will begin Saturday at 5:40 p.m.
The men’s championship game, which will be streamed live on USA Basketball’s website, is set to tip at 10:20 p.m.
In addition to the lure of a national championship, the event will serve as the 2019 USA Basketball Men’s 3×3 National Team trials, as all eligible athletes will be in consideration for selection to the 2019 USA Men’s 3×3 World Cup and 2019 USA Men’s 2019 U.S. Pan American Games 3×3 Basketball teams.
Olympic fans will see the launch of a new basketball discipline with the inclusion of 3×3 in 2020. The exciting and fast-paced game officially was unveiled in international competition at the 2010 Youth Olympic Games and has since become a fan favorite at Fédération Internationale de Basketball 3×3 World Cup events.
Played on a half court with a 10-minute clock, and a 12-second shot clock, the first team to 21 points, or the team in the lead at the end of regulation, is the winner. The nonstop action of 3×3 will make it one of the hottest tickets in Tokyo, and fans in Las Vegas will get an early taste of that excitement during the USA Basketball 3×3 Nationals.
Held annually since 2012, this year marks the eighth edition of the USA Basketball 3×3 National Championships, and the first time the nationals will be held outside of Colorado Springs, Colo.