The Daily Nole

On My Mind Monday: Revisiting FSU’s In-Season Tournament Wins Under Hamilton

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Maybe feeling a bit disrespected by the pollsters, Florida State men’s basketball made a nice statement during its short trip to Niceville over Thanksgiving weekend.

The Seminoles won the Emerald Coast Classic with 3-point wins over No. 17 Tennessee and Purdue. Since dropping its opener, FSU has won seven straight and is a ranked basketball team for the first time this season at No. 17 in the latest AP Poll.

The strong showing in the Emerald Coast Classic led one to wonder how many early-season tournaments that FSU has won under head coach Leonard Hamilton. The most recent was the sixth.

Here’s a look back at all of them:

Colonial Classic (Tallahassee)
Dates: Nov. 12-14, 2006
Schedule: McNeese State (W, 85-65); Illinois State (W, 73-59); SMU (W, 59-52)
FSU Top Performer(s): Al Thornton, F (55% FG, 17.3 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.7 SPG)
Overview: Florida State held three straight opponents to 65 points or less to win the Colonial Classic to open the 2006-07 season. The most resistance came from SMU in the title game as the Mustangs were within two in the final minute before clutch foul shooting helped FSU put the game away. Forward Al Thornton was named the tournament MVP. FSU guards Jason Rich and Toney Douglas also made the all-tournament team.

Global Sports Classic (Las Vegas)
Dates: Nov. 28-29, 2008
Schedule: Cincinnati (W, 58-47); California (W, 80-77)
FSU Top Performer(s): Toney Douglas, G (18 PPG, 7 RPG); Uche Echefu, F (13 PPG, 4-4 3PT)
Overview: Florida State enjoyed a double-digit advantage for much of its stay in Las Vegas early in the 2008-09 season. The Seminoles pulled away from Cincinnati to open the 2-day tournament before holding off California in the final. Guard Toney Douglas paced FSU in the finale with 28 points.

Old Spice Classic (Orlando)
Dates: Nov. 26-29, 2009
Schedule: Iona (W, 54-49); Alabama (W, 60-51); Marquette (W, 57-56)
FSU Top Performer(s): Chris Singleton, F (15 PPG, 7.7 RPG, 3 SPG, 6-9 3PT); Derwin Kitchen, G (12.7 PPG, 3 APG, 5-9 3PT)
Overview: Florida State dominated defensively over three games on Disney property to take the 2009 Old Spice Classic. After collecting wins over Iona and Alabama, FSU rallied from 17 points down to defeat Marquette in the championship game of the tournament. Center Solomon Alabi hit a short hook in the final seconds to put the Seminoles ahead for good in a hard-fought win.

Coaches vs. Cancer Classic (Brooklyn)
Dates: Nov. 16-17, 2012
Schedule: BYU (W, 88-70); St. Joseph’s (W, 73-66)
FSU Top Performer(s): Okaro White, F (16.5 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 68% FG); Michael Snaer, G (15.5 PPG, 7 RPG, 4 APG)
Overview: After shooting 11-for-20 from distance to run away from BYU in the opener of the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic early in the 2012-13 season, Florida State held off St. Joseph’s for the title. The Hawks climbed to within three with less than five minutes to play, but forward Terrance Shannon scored six straight FSU points to help pull out the victory. Over the two games, FSU shot 52 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.

Jamaica Classic (Montego Bay)
Dates: Nov. 17-19, 2017
Schedule: Fordham (W, 67-43); Colorado State (W, 90-73)
FSU Top Performer(s): Terance Mann, G/F (17 PPG, 7 RPG, 71% FG); Mfiondu Kabengele, F (13.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 75% FG)
Overview: After holding Fordham to 23 percent shooting and 1-for-22 from deep to open the 2017 Jamaica Classic, Florida State actually trailed Colorado State in the second half of the final. The Rams opened the second half on a 14-1 run to take a 50-48 lead, but the Seminoles closed the contest on a 42-23 run.

Emerald Coast Classic (Niceville)
Dates: Nov. 28-29, 2019
Schedule: Tennessee (W, 60-57); Purdue (W, 63-60 – OT)
FSU Top Performer(s): Devin Vassell, F (13 PPG, 5.5 RPG); Trent Forrest, G (13 PPG, 2 SPG)
Overview: Florida State opened the recent Emerald Coast Classic on a 12-2 run in the opener against Tennessee before holding off the then No. 17 Volunteers. In the championship contest, the Seminoles trailed by two in the final minute against Purdue before Trent Forrest’s runner forced overtime. FSU outscored the Boilermakers 5-2 in the extra period with a RaiQuan Gray free throw in the final minute putting the Seminoles ahead for good.

Mike Ferguson is the editor of The Daily Nole. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson. Like The Daily Nole on Facebook. To pitch an idea, author a post or to learn more about The Daily Nole, email Mike Ferguson at

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