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Crucial stretch ahead for men’s basketball

The Colonial Athletic Association conference-leading men’s basketball team (17-10, 12-3 in CAA play) will face James Madison at Matthews Arena on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in a nationally televised game.

Comcast SportsNet will televise the game in states across the East Coast. A win over the Dukes, currently tied for the league’s second-best record, would guarantee Northeastern at least a share of the regular-season Colonial Athletic Association conference title.

With three regular-season games remaining, the Huskies head into the home stretch with much at stake. Maintaining the best record in the conference would significantly benefit Northeastern in the league tournament, which will be held March 9-11 in Richmond, Va. The top team will receive a first-round bye and automatically advance to the semifinals. The team that wins the Colonial Athletic Association conference tournament will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament—a feat the Huskies last achieved in 1988.

The Huskies have lost two straight games after winning 12 of the previous 13. The season has thus far been filled with thrilling moments, including several overtime victories and game-winning buzzer-beating baskets.

Along with watching the excitement on the court, fans cheering on the Huskies at Matthews Arena on Wednesday night will also be treated to giveaways, free food, and other activities. The first 1,000 students in the arena prior to the game are eligible to participate in an indoor BBQ tailgate in the N Zone. They will also receive a special red t-shirt that honors team co-captains Joel Smith and Jonathan Lee and features the event’s Twitter hashtag #PackMatthews.

The women’s varsity hockey team, which won the 2013 Beanpot, and several club sports teams that won their respective league championship, will also be honored during the game. Students can also participate in Northeastern’s official version of the viral sensation “Harlem Shake,” which will take place at halftime and be posted to YouTube immediately following the game.

In addition, 50 students seated on the floor will be randomly selected to win free pizza for a year from UNO Chicago Grill or meals at other on campus dining locations courtesy of Chartwell’s.

Students can reserve their tickets on myNEU, while alumni and the general public can purchase tickets at GoNU.com/tickets.