The University of Hawai’i and the University of North Carolina have agreed to play a men’s basketball game, Nov. 22, 2024 at the SimpliFi Arena at Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu. The teams were originally slated play in November 2020, however the game was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’re extremely happy to have North Carolina back on our non-conference schedule,” head coach Eran Ganot said. “Last season, they were the jewel of one of our best non-conference schedules in years. COVID dealt us an unfortunate hand and we’re continuing to navigate through it, but it’s great to get ahead on future schedules. Our student-athletes get to compete against one of the game’s elite programs and I’m thrilled for our fans who always come out in full force to support us. I’m sure the electricity at the SimpliFi Arena at Stan Sheriff Center will be off the charts.”
The game will mark the sixth meeting between the schools with four of the five previous contests coming in Honolulu. The then-defending national champion Tar Heels defeated UH, 83-68, in their last stop in 2016. The teams also played in 1994 during the inaugural season of the Stan Sheriff Center (then-named the Special Events Arena). The No. 1-ranked Tar Heels defeated the ‘Bows, 88-76, on their way to an NCAA Final Four appearance later that season. Both of those previous meetings were arena sellouts.
Two other games in the series have been played in Honolulu including in 1986 and ’92 at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center. In 1986, the teams opened the season with the No. 1-ranked Tar Heels winning 98-78 in the Thanksgiving Festival. The Tar Heels returned in 1992 for the Rainbow Classic and defeated UH, 101-84, in the third place game, before going on to capture their third NCAA championship later that season.