2013-2014 Big Ten Preview: Top non-conference games

  • 10/22/2013 10:38 am in

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We continue our 2013-2014 Big Ten preview today with a look at ten non-conference games, listed in chronological order, that you’ll want to mark on your calendars as must see.

Michigan State vs. Kentucky on Tuesday, Nov. 12
Event: Champion’s Classic at the United Center in Chicago
TV coverage: ESPN

It’s never too early for No. 1 vs. No. 2, right? The Spartans are No. 2 in the first coaches poll and Kentucky is No. 1 and this is an early preview of a game that we could see again in early April. Michigan State is the more experienced group, but the Wildcats have another mega recruiting class.

Florida at Wisconsin on Tuesday, Nov. 12
TV coverage: ESPN

The Badgers will get an early test against a top ten team in the country when Billy Donovan and Florida come to Madison. Wisconsin’s frontcourt, which lost Jared Berggren, Ryan Evans and Mike Bruesewitz, will be immediately tested when it tries to contain Florida senior Patric Young.

Ohio State at Marquette on Saturday, Nov. 16
TV coverage: Fox

In a second attempt at a game that was canceled due to inclement weather last season on the USS Yorktown, both teams are looking to replace their leading man. Marquette lost Vander Blue and Ohio State lost Deshaun Thomas early to the NBA Draft and leave big shoes to fill.

Indiana at Syracuse on Tuesday, Dec. 3
Event: Big Ten-ACC Challenge at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse
TV coverage: ESPN

In a rematch of a Sweet 16 meeting from a season ago, Indiana travels to Syracuse where the Orange will again present their signature 2-3 zone. Both teams lost several significant contributors, but Syracuse returns C.J. Fair, who scored 22 points in a Final Four loss to Michigan.

Michigan at Duke on Tuesday, Dec. 3
Event: Big Ten-ACC Challenge at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham
TV coverage: ESPN

It’s hard to not get excited by a matchup involved two preseason top ten teams and that’s exactly what we have in this game. How will Michigan manage a tough environment without the leadership of Trey Burke?

North Carolina at Michigan State on Wednesday, Dec. 4
Event: Big Ten-ACC Challenge at the Breslin Center in East Lansing
TV coverage: ESPN

The Spartans boast one of the nation’s best homecourt atmospheres and the Izzone will no doubt be charged to welcome North Carolina. Assuming P.J. Hairston’s suspension is lifted by this time, two of the best backcourt players in the country will go head-to-head in Hairston and Gary Harris.

Marquette at Wisconsin on Saturday, Dec. 7
TV coverage: BTN

Marquette has won the previous two meetings between the in-state rivals, but going into Madison with an inexperienced backcourt isn’t typically a recipe for success. On the flip side, Marquette is decidedly better in the frontcourt in terms of talent and experience.

Arizona at Michigan on Saturday, Dec. 14
TV coverage: CBS

The first of a two-year home-and-home agreement, this matchup features a pair of frontcourts stacked with future NBA talent. For the Wolverines, it’s sophomores Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary and for the Wildcats, it’s star freshman Aaron Gordon and sophomore Kaleb Tarczewski.

Indiana vs. Notre Dame on Saturday, Dec. 14
Event: Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis
TV coverage: ESPN

In what has become an event that the state of Indiana looks forward to each year, Indiana and Notre Dame will lock horns at the Crossroads Classic, which also features Butler vs. Purdue. The Fighting Irish have an experienced backcourt in Jerian Grant and Eric Atkins, but will need to find an answer for Noah Vonleh up front.

Ohio State vs. Notre Dame on Saturday, Dec. 21
Event: Gotham Classic at Madison Square Garden in New York City
TV coverage: ESPN2

A week after facing Indiana, the Fighting Irish will again play a Big Ten team on a neutral court. Eric Atkins vs. Aaron Craft will be a lot of fun to watch under the bright lights in Madison Square Garden.

Filed to:

  • Joe Pop

    Marquette/Wisconsin was played at the Bradley Center last year, MU’s home court

  • Oldguyy

    And who besides a few cheeseheads cares a whit about that game?

  • mikeymikey

    I’m not one of the ppl who sit and whine about our schedule… but seeing MSU playing uk and UNC makes me really wish we had a piece of that kind of action in the pre-B1G schedule

  • TomJameson

    I understand and normally would agree to a point. But, this year I think the schedule will really benefit this young team. There are enough tough games to test the players, and enough “fluff” to get them playing as a team and increasing their confidence. Nobody gives IU much chance of beating Syracuse, but I for one would not be surprised. IMO, This is going to be an up-and-down year, but fun to watch. lol

  • You’re right. Made the fix.

  • Joe Pop

    Not sure, but this cheesehead does

  • Sherronhasaheadache

    I Just hopewe are ready to play against the orange cause i do not want to see a replay of 1989

  • iuoiu

    The weaker non-conf schedule is looking like a blessing when you look at all the injuries to key new players that we are still working through. The last thing this team would want is a game vs. a heavyweight early November. As much as I love playing tough schedules, I fear that approach would pretty much crush our season this year.

  • HoosierFanaticFromUSI

    The schedule isn’t as bad as people make it out to be, but the home schedule is terrible. If Michigan can schedule a home and home with a team like Arizona, then IU should be able to do that too. Just a quality home and home to rotate with the B1G/ACC Challenge so the fans are gauranteed one good OOC home game every year. That’s my one and only gripe!

    Oh, and I hope MSU beats the living daylights out of those baby cats on Nov. 12.

  • PDXHoosier

    Adding Syracuse should tilt the tables toward the ACC for the B1G/ACC challenge in the years to come. I guess if Maryland improves that may help balance it out, but for now I don’t see the B1G winning.

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    Looking forward to watch MSU spank pUKe on Nov. 12!!! Lmiuao.

  • N71

    Top out of conference opponents if I could cast a wish:

    1) Kansas
    2) Georgetown
    3) Texas
    4) Stanford
    5) St. Louis
    6) Louisville
    7) Florida
    8) UCLA

  • CreamandCrimson

    I’m surprised to see Texas and Stanford on a wish list. Texas has barely been competent since their one year with Kevin Durant and Stanford hasn’t really gotten things going under Johnny Dawkins. It’s your list and there’s nothing wrong with it, I’m just surprised to see those two schools on there.

  • Miamihoosier

    We’ll find out if Iowa is going to be for real in the battle for Atlantis. They start with Xavier, and could see Tennessee and Kansas. They also host Notre Dame. They’re an experienced bunch. I expect to see them knock off a lot of teams in the Big Ten this year.

  • Gregory Spera

    Dreading that Syracuse game in the dome. Just hope we don’t get embarrassed again. At least CTC shouldn’t be caught totally off guard by that 2-3 zone, this time.

  • CreamandCrimson

    Some way too early predictions that are sure to be wrong…
    -Michigan State will beat Kentucky but the national media will spend most of the time after the game writing about how it was early in the season and how Kentucky was obviously so much more talented and once they had experience they would roll.
    -Florida will beat Wisconsin handily and we will foolishly think this is finally the year the Badgers slip from the top half of the conference.
    -Our Hoosiers will head into the Carrier Dome feeling cautiously optimistic about our chances to hang with the Orange. But our lack of perimeter shooting and experience will make us look pretty bad in a double-digit loss.
    -Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary will shine but Michigan will execute poorly down the stretch without their former star PG and lose a close one to Duke.
    -Michigan State will handle UNC (much like we did last season!).
    -The Hoosiers show signs of maturing and gelling as they knock off Notre Dame and take momentum in the Big Ten season.

    I’ll look back at these after the games are played and see how smart/dumb I am (bet on the latter).

  • Snookafly

    Plus, in years past they tended to weight the matchups in the ACC’s favor.

  • hoosier1158

    He should have been ready the 1st time…

  • marcusgresham

    I think you could put Missouri in there. Gonzaga will play anyone anywhere. Going to New Mexico every other year would be a test.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I’d like to see them play VCU, Syracuse, or another team that plays differently from the B1G slugfest. Just as prep for the NCAA tourney

  • Hoosier faithful 13

    I’d like to see a home and home series with Kansas again. Both rough places to play with such a great feel for basketball !!!!

  • PDXHoosier

    I think Kansas and UNC would both be top of the list. It should be against a big name program or none at all.

  • sarge

    Looking at the conferences, I think you stand more of a chance with Kansas than UNC because of the Big Ten/ACC scheduling.

  • TomJameson

    You know all I hear, is about CTC failing in facing that zone. But I really think that hitting your 3s is one of the most important factors to beating a good zone; and we weren’t hitting them! Nobody was! So… Syracuse packed it inside and closed off the passing and driving lanes and we lost. CTC was not on the floor missing those threes, which would have spread the floor and opened up the lanes.
    Coach could probably have done something better, or differently, but come on. They just weren’t hitting the 3s. And, they shot over larger/taller guards all year so let’s not let the height/length issue slant the game results too much either.
    A few things went wrong that game, not all CTC’s failure. Just saying. As always, just my opinion.