The University of Minnesota men's basketball program announced its 2013 non-conference schedule today. The schedule includes 13 games, nine of which will be played at Williams Arena. The entire 2013-14 schedule with game times and television rights will be released by the Big Ten Conference at a later date.
The Golden Gophers open the regular season with four of their first five games at Williams Arena, including the season-opening tilt against Lehigh University on Fri., Nov. 8. Minnesota will leave the friendly confines of "The Barn" for four games during the non-conference season, beginning with a trip to Richmond, Va. to finish the home-and-home series. The Gophers defeated Richmond 72-57 last season in Minneapolis.
Minnesota will play three games in Maui at the Lahaina Civic Center as part of the 2013 EA SPORTS Maui Invitational Nov. 25-27. The Gophers open play on Nov. 25 against Syracuse University on ESPN2 and will play either the University of Arkansas or the University of California in the second round. The remaining field includes Baylor, Dayton, Gonzaga and Chaminade.
The entire EA SPORTS Maui Invitational will be televised live on the ESPN family of networks. Games will also be broadcast live on the WatchESPN mobile app and WatchESPN.com.
The Maroon and Gold's season officially begins on Fri., Nov. 1, in an exhibition matchup with the Wolves from Cardinal Stritch University, the reigning NAIA Division II National Champions. Minnesota's other exhibition game will be Mon., Nov. 4 against Concordia-St. Paul.
Minnesota returns its top two scorers from a team that finished the 2012-13 season 21-13 overall, including a win over UCLA in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Gophers' Non-Conference Opponents:
Lehigh (Friday, Nov. 8 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Dr. Brett Reed (7th season)…first appearance against Gophers…finished 21-10 last season…made the postseason three of the last four years…posted three-straight 20-win seasons…lost to Wyoming in the CBI Tournament. Top returning scorer: Mackey McKnight (Sr. Guard - 11.9 ppg last season).
Montana (Tuesday, Nov. 12 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Wayne Tinkle (8th season)…Gophers lead series 3-1…finished 25-7 last season…reigning Big Sky Conference champions…back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances…lost to Syracuse in the NCAA Tournament second round. Top returning scorer: Kareem Jamar (Sr. Guard/Forward - 14.2 ppg last season).
Richmond (Saturday, Nov. 16 - Robins Center) - Coached by Chris Mooney (9th season)…series tied 1-1…Gophers won 72-57 last season…finished 19-15 last season…made the postseason five of the last six years…lost to Wright State in CBI Tournament. Top returning scorer: Cedrick Lindsay (Sr. Guard - 12.0 ppg last season).
Coastal Carolina (Tuesday, Nov. 19 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Cliff Ellis (7th season)…Gophers lead series 1-0…finished 14-15 last season. Top returning scorer: Warren Gillis (Jr. Guard - 10.5 ppg last season).
Wofford (Thursday, Nov. 21 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Mike Young (12th season)…Gophers lead series 2-0…finished 13-19 last season. Top returning scorer: Spencer Collins (So. Guard - 12.4 ppg last season).
Syracuse (Monday, Nov. 25 - Lahaina Civic Center) - Coached by Jim Boeheim (37th season)…Gophers lead series 1-0…defeated Orange in the 1990 Sweet 16…finished 30-10 last season…lost to Michigan in the Final Four… Top returning scorer: C.J. Fair (Sr. Forward - 14.5 ppg last season).
Florida State (Tuesday, Dec. 3 - Williams Arena - B1G/ACC Challenge) - Coached by Leonard Hamilton (12th season)…series tied 4-4…Gophers won 77-68 last season…finished 18-16 last season…made eight-straight postseason appearances… Top returning scorer: Okaro White (Sr. Forward - 12.4 ppg last season).
New Orleans (Saturday, Dec. 7 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Mark Slessinger (3rd season)…first appearance against Gophers…finished 8-18 last season…first season as member of the Southland Conference. Top returning scorer: Cory Dixon (Sr. Forward - 8.7 ppg last season).
South Dakota State (Tuesday, Dec. 10 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Scott Nagy (19th season)…Gophers lead series 16-0…Gophers won 88-64 last season…back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances…reigning Summit League champions…lost to Michigan in the NCAA Tournament second round. Top returning scorer: Jordan Dykstra (Sr. Forward - 12.5 ppg last season).
Nebraska Omaha (Friday, Dec. 20 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Derrin Hansen (9th season)…first appearance against Gophers…finished 11-20 last season…third season as a member of Division I…second season as a member of the Summit League. Top returning scorer: Justin Simmons (Sr. Guard - 16.7 ppg last season).
Texas A&M Corpus Christi (Saturday, Dec. 28 - Williams Arena) - Coached by Willis Wilson (3rd season…first appearance against Gophers…finished 6-23 last season. Top returning scorer: Will Nelson (Sr. Forward - 13.6 ppg last season).