AAC rival, Memphis, reportedly sells out all 18,000 tickets for Memphis Madness

Saturday, Wichita State will welcome fans into the first sight of a new season of college basketball. American Athletic Conference rival Memphis plans to do the same — but in a much bigger way.

Thursday night at the FedEx Forum, first-year Memphis Head Coach Penny Hardaway and his staff will host 18,000 fans for the spectacle that is Memphis Madness. Tickets for the event are reportedly sold out, and that’s likely the cause of the star-studded music entertainment that will accompany the scrimmage.

Justin Timberlake and Drake will be in attendance as Hardaway is announced for the first time as the coach of his alma matter.

Buzz is surrounding Hardaway, a four-time NBA All-Star, who has already turned the program around, landing a high class of recruits. His recruiting class includes four-star point guard Alex Lomax, who was granted release from Wichita State to join the Tigers. Memphis is expected to host up to six top-50 recruits in the class of 2019, including the No. 1 overall rated recruit, James Wiseman, at Memphis Madness.

Memphis hired Hardaway after firing Head Coach Tubby Smith. Smith failed to take the team to a post-season tournament in either of his two seasons.