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Gonzaga, Villanova will meet in 2017 Jimmy V Classic

It’s a year away but Gonzaga’s 2017-18 men’s basketball schedule is taking shape.

The Zags will face 2016 national champion Villanova as part of the Jimmy V Classic doubleheader at Madison Square Garden in New York. The other contest features Connecticut and Syracuse.

Villanova edged North Carolina 77-74 in the championship game on a 26-foot, buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Kris Jenkins. The Wildcats are No. 4 in the AP preseason poll.

“That will be a great game,” GU coach Mark Few said. “And obviously what they did last year sure makes it even bigger.”

Gonzaga will play in the PK80, a loaded 16-team tournament in Portland honoring Nike co-founder Phil Knight’s 80th birthday, over the 2017 Thanksgiving holiday. The Zags will also visit Washington and San Diego State.

Gonzaga has played at Madison Square Garden several times, most recently when the Zags beat Georgia and St. John’s to win the NIT Season Tip-Off in Nov. 2014.