One of the most exciting times during a Seton Hall Basketball off-season is the unveiling of the annual non-conference schedule. Some of the match-ups are already public knowledge (UMKC, LSU, Washington, Ohio State/URI, Wake Forest, Longwood) and some aren't. No matter what, seeing a full non-conference slate on the Seton Hall Athletics website is always a sign that the season is inching closer. Here's how this season's schedule shapes up:
Friday, Nov. 9: University of Missouri-Kansas City (Walsh Gym, South Orange)
Monday, Nov. 12: Norfolk State (Prudential Center, Newark -- Naismith Hall of Fame Tip Off)
Saturday, Nov. 17: vs. Washington at Mohegan Sun (Naismith Hall of Fame Tip Off)
Sunday, Nov. 18: vs. Rhode Island/Ohio State at Mohegan Sun (Naismith Hall of Fame Tip Off)
Wednesday, Nov. 21: Maine (Prudential Center, Newark
Sunday, Nov. 25: St. Peter’s (Prudential Center, Newark)
Thursday, Nov. 29: At LSU (Pete Maravich Assembly Center -- Baton Rouge, LA) Big East-SEC Challenge)
Tuesday, Dec. 4: NJIT (Prudential Center, Newark)
Saturday, Dec. 8: At Wake Forest (Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Winston-Salem, NC)
Saturday, Dec. 15: North Carolina A&T (Prudential Center, Newark)
Saturday, Dec. 22: at LIU (Barclays Center, Brooklyn)
Wednesday, Dec. 19: Longwood (Prudential Center, Newark)
Friday, Dec. 28: Stony Brook (Prudential Center, Newark)
Home games are emboldened.
For a comprehensive breakdown of the 2012-13 non-conference schedule, follow the jump.
Being blunt, the non-conference schedule does absolute nothing to entice Seton Hall fans to become first time season ticket holders and acts as a catalyst towards preventing renewals. When Stony Brook, no offense to them, as they nearly (and probably should have) knocked the Pirates out of the last season's NIT, is clearly your toughest home game, there is going to be criticism.
- The usual local cupcakes NJIT and St. Peter's are on the platter as they are probably very easy (logistically) programs to schedule.
- The Longwood Lancers appear on the schedule for the third straight season and hopefully for the last time as a home-away-home two-for-one deal wraps itself up.
- North Carolina A&T, UMKC and Maine are all newcomers to the non-conference schedule but the trio look to be nothing more than lose-lose games as far as RPI & SOS are concerned.
RPI 1-50 (Great schedule):
RPI 51-100 (Good): Washington, LSU, Wake Forest, Long Island
RPI 101-200 (Neutral): Norfolk State, Stony Brook
RPI 200-250 (Bad):
RPI 251+ (Terrible): UMKC, Maine, St. Peter's, NJIT, North Carolina A&T, Longwood
Conclusion: As scary as it sounds, Long Island might have the best chance of being a Top 50 RPI opponent as I don't see Washington as a squad with enough firepower to overcome the talent they have lost. Don't sleep on Wake Forest though, they might surprise a few people with that Melvyn Oliver sized freshman class as a wildcard. No matter what, it looks like the six 250+ RPI schedules (projected, of course) might drag this non-conference schedule down. While I don't see the final strength of schedule rating to turn out Cincinnati bad (300+, although they have a gauntlet of a non-conference schedule this season), it won't be a head turner for the right reasons come Selection Sunday if the Pirates happen to still be in the discussion.
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