Here's a portion of the release:
Nineteen of the Cardinals' 31 games will be played against teams that participated in post-season competition last season, including 16 in the NCAA Tournament (NCAA Tournament: Butler, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Georgetown, Kentucky, Marquette, Memphis, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh twice, St. John's, Syracuse twice, Vanderbilt, Villanova, West Virginia; NIT: Long Beach State, College of Charleston; CollegeInsider.com Tournament: Ohio).
As it did last season, U of L will face three of the teams that participated in the 2011 NCAA Final Four: NCAA champion Connecticut, national runner-up Butler, and Kentucky. Three non-conference foes - Memphis, Kentucky and Vanderbilt - are among the nation's top 10 teams in early preseason rankings. Louisville's opponents collectively won an average of over 20 games (561-380 combined record, .596 winning percentage).
"This will be one of the more difficult schedules we have faced at Louisville," said U of L coach Rick Pitino, whose team played the nation's 11th-toughest schedule according to the ratings percentage index (RPI) last season. "We look forward to the challenge. The BIG EAST schedule is always going to be difficult for everyone in our league, and this year in particular it's going to be very tough for us."
And here's the full schedule:
|Date||Opponent / Event||Location||Time / Result|
|10/26/11||vs. PIKEVILLE *||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|11/03/11||vs. BELLARMINE *||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|GLOBAL SPORTS INVITATIONAL|
|11/11/11||vs. TENNESSEE-MARTIN||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|11/13/11||vs. LAMAR||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|11/22/11||vs. ARKANSAS STATE||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|11/25/11||vs. OHIO||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|11/28/11||vs. LONG BEACH STATE||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|11/19/11||at Butler||Indianapolis, Ind.||TBA|
|BIG EAST / SEC CHALLENGE|
|12/02/11||vs. VANDERBILT||KFC YUM! CENTER||8:30 p.m. ET|
|12/07/11||vs. IUPUI||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|12/10/11||vs. FAIRLEIGH DICKINSON||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME SHOOTOUT|
|12/17/11||vs. MEMPHIS||KFC YUM! CENTER||4:00 p.m. ET|
|12/20/11||vs. COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|BILLY MINARDI CLASSIC|
|12/23/11||vs. WESTERN KENTUCKY||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|12/28/11||vs. GEORGETOWN #||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|12/31/11||at Kentucky||Lexington, Ky.||12:00 p.m. ET|
|01/03/12||at St. John's #||New York, N.Y.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|01/07/12||vs. NOTRE DAME #||KFC YUM! CENTER||4:00 p.m. ET|
|01/10/12||at Providence #||Providence, R.I.||7:00 p.m. ET|
|01/14/12||vs. DE PAUL #||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|01/16/12||at Marquette #||Milwaukee, Wis.||TBA|
|01/21/12||at Pittsburgh #||Pittsburgh, Pa.||9:00 p.m. ET|
|01/25/12||vs. VILLANOVA #||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|01/28/12||at Seton Hall #||Newark, N.J.||TBA|
|02/04/12||vs. RUTGERS #||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|02/06/12||vs. CONNECTICUT #||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|02/11/12||at West Virginia #||Morgantown, W.Va.||12:00 p.m. ET|
|02/13/12||vs. SYRACUSE #||KFC YUM! CENTER||7:00 p.m. ET|
|02/18/12||at DePaul #||Chicago, Ill.||TBA|
|02/23/12||at Cincinnati #||Cincinnati, Ohio||9:00 p.m. ET|
|02/26/12||vs. PITTSBURGH #||KFC YUM! CENTER||2:00 p.m. ET|
|02/29/12||vs. USF #||KFC YUM! CENTER||TBA|
|03/03/12||at Syracuse #||Syracuse, N.Y.||4:00 p.m. ET|
|BIG EAST CHAMPIONSHIP|
|03/06/12||TBD||New York, N.Y.||TBA|
|03/07/12||TBD||New York, N.Y.||TBA|
|03/08/12||TBD||New York, N.Y.||TBA|
|03/09/12||TBD||New York, N.Y.||TBA|
|03/10/12||TBD||New York, N.Y.||TBA|
The Jan. 16 game at Marquette and the Feb. 6 and Feb. 13 home games against Connecticut and Syracuse are ESPN "Big Monday" games.
--Very interesting to see us opening Big East play (against Georgetown) before New Year's and three days before the Kentucky game. I don't think that's happened since we joined the league. Will be sort of a weird vibe since the game before UK is almost always a "don't look ahead" deal.
--New Year's Eve game against UK will once again tip at noon...will once again be an insanely long day.
--DePaul Days: Jan. 14 (home) and Feb. 18 (road).
--The league generally tries to pit the two preseason favorites against one another on the last Saturday of the regular season, so it's not especially surprising, I suppose, that we'll end the year at Syracuse.
--Former Cards Chris Brickley and David Padgett are assistants at Fairleigh Dickinson and IUPUI, respectively. Both are on the home schedule.
-"The Bill" is the game vs. Western this year on Christmas Eve Eve. Again, great holiday fun.
--Sweet Jesus this schedule is pretty awesome.