North Carolina and Michigan State compete on Carl Vinson

North+Carolina+and+Michigan+State+compete+on+Carl+Vinson

Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson-whitehouse.gov

A MSU player drives to the basket during the NCAA men’s basketball game between the University of North Carolina and Michigan State University on board the USS Carl Vinson, docked at North Island Naval Station in San Diego, Calif., Nov. 11, 2011.

Shelby Rowe, Editor in Chief

SAN DIEGO– On Friday, Nov. 11, the basketball teams from the University of North Carolina and Michigan State played on the aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson, in a historic game titled the Carrier Classic to celebrate Veterans Day.

“I think it was good to show support on Veterans Day on the Carl Vinson with the President,” junior Robert Reddick said. “It was a cool atmosphere for a basketball game.”

For a crowd of about 8,000, including Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, North Carolina and Michigan played an outstanding game for the American Veterans. Magic Jonson and Michael Jordan were alumni from both colleges and served as honorary captains.

“It was cool because Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan are alumni and them being captains inspired the players to play their best,” senior Michael Clementi said.

Before the game, Obama made a speech thanking the vets for their hard work and dedication. He also talked about the importance of the Carl Vinson, which carried Osama bin Laden’s body out to sea before he was buried in the ocean.

Tickets to this event were impossible to obtain since they weren’t even on sale. The game was exclusively for the soldiers who risked their life for this country and was completely dedicated to Veterans Day.

The floor of the basketball court was the exact same from the NCAA’s Final Four last season. 258 pieces of hardwood were airlifted to the carrier and assembled one by one. The construction for the event started Nov. 1.

The NCAA put a tremendous amount of effort and dedication into this game and they succeeded making 11-11-11 a date to remember. In the end, top ranked North Carolina won 67-55.

“Overall, it was cool because it has never been done before,” Clementi said. “It was the first college basketball game ever on a battleship and it was on Veterans Day to support all of our troops. Plus, it was a good game and will definitely go down in history.”