GREENVILLE, N.C. — Originally scheduled to start the 2020-21 season at the Gulf Coast Showcase in Fort Myers, Fla., East Carolina will now open the 2020-21 season in the newly created 49er Tip-Off Classic in Charlotte university officials announced Wednesday.

The multi-team event (MTE) was constructed following the cancellation of the Volunteer Classic in Knoxville, Tenn., which included Charlotte, Tennessee and VCU.

The Pirates will open the season against the host 49ers on Friday, Nov. 27, at 3 p.m. and then take on Belmont-Abbey the following day at 3 p.m. Both games will be played at Halton Arena.

Due to state and local restrictions, fans will not be permitted inside the venue for the event.

Friday’s game can be heard across the Pirate Sports Network from Learfield IMG College, while Saturday’s contest will exclusively be broadcast locally on WRHD 94.3 FM. The games will also be streamed on the Charlotte 49ers YouTube page.

Last season, ECU posted a 60-56 win over Charlotte at home, behind 23 points from Jayden Gardner and 18 from Tremont Robinson-White. The win snapped the Pirates’ three-game losing streak in the series, which the 49ers lead 18-9.

Saturday’s game against Belmont-Abbey will be the Pirates’ first against the Crusaders since 2004 and 18th overall in the series which dates back to 1937. Last season the Crusaders finished 21-10 overall and 14-6 in the Division II Conference Carolinas.

East Carolina is slated to open its 2020-21 home campaign on Saturday, Dec. 5, against Radford.

49er Tip-Off Classic Schedule
Nov. 27 – East Carolina at Charlotte (3 p.m.)
Nov. 28 – East Carolina vs. Belmont-Abbey (3 p.m.)
Nov. 30 – Belmont-Abbey vs. Charlotte (6 p.m.)