March 28, 2012
AUBURN - Auburn senior forward Kenny Gabriel will participate in the slam dunk portion of the State Farm College Slam Dunk & 3-Point Championships on Thursday in Tulane's Fogelman Arena at 8 pm CT on ESPN prior to the Final Four in New Orleans.
The 24th annual event will showcase the dunking and sharp-shooting talents of 24 of the nation's top college basketball players. Individual events in the State Farm College Slam Dunk & 3-Point Championships include: State Farm Women's 3-Point Contest, Hampton Hotels Men's 3-Point Contest, Pure Protein Battle of the Champions and Denny's Slam Dunk Contest.
"It is an honor because I never thought that I would be able to be in a dunk contest for college," said Gabriel. "I am glad that I got the opportunity to do it. I hope to go down there and win it."
The roster for the 2012 State Farm College Slam Dunk & 3-Point Championships includes Missouri's Marcus Denmon, Duke's Miles Plumlee, Northwestern's John Shurna and UNLV's Chace Stanback.
Gabriel averaged 12.2 points per game this season for the Tigers along with 7.3 rebounds and 2.3 blocks as he was named Auburn's MVP. He ranks second in the SEC in blocks and eighth in rebounding.
Intersport announced that the fans will be the "Fifth Judge" during the Denny's Slam Dunk Championship by voting via Twitter.
Fans can vote on every dunk by simply tweeting #CollegeSlam, followed by the player's last name and a score between one and 10 (E.g. #CollegeSlam #Smith10). From there, Mass Relevance, the technology leader in social curation and integration, will calculate all fan scores and deliver an average rating via their platform. That rating will be presented as the "Fifth Judge" and paired with four celebrity judges' scores to make up each player's total score.
Alumni of the event include Gary Payton (Oregon State), Steve Nash (UC-Santa Clara), Allan Houston (Tennessee), Bobby Hurley (Duke), Michael Finley (Wisconsin), Wes Matthews (Marquette), and Aaron Brooks (Oregon). Other alumni include six current members of the 2012 Harlem Globetrotters, including last year's Denny's Dunk Contest winner, Jacob Tucker.
General admission tickets are $15, a Family Four Pack is $40 and groups of 10 or more can purchase tickets for $8 per ticket. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit collegeslam.com. Fogelman Arena's doors will open an hour prior at 7 pm CT.
The ESPN broadcast team includes Brad Nessler, Dan Dakich, Jimmy Dykes and Shannon Spake. The program will re-air numerous times on ESPN networks.