RICHMOND, Va. – Five NCAA Tournament teams, including three Sweet 16 squads and an Elite Eight participant from a year ago, highlight VCU's 2019-20 men's basketball non-conference schedule, released Tuesday.
Four potential opponents, LSU, Florida State, Tennessee and Purdue, all finished the 2018-19 season the top 16 of the NCAA's NET rankings. In all, VCU will take on six opponents that received an NCAA or NIT bid last year. Nine of VCU's potential opponents won at least 20 games last season.
"This is another great VCU non-conference schedule. Our team knows we have our work cut out for us," said Rams' third-year Head Coach Mike Rhoades. "We are excited to host some great teams in the Siegel Center in front of the best college basketball fans around. We are also looking forward to the road trips and a great tournament in Florida. We're going to play a number of teams fighting for the NCAA Tournament and league championships like us. Our team is working hard getting ready for a fun 2019-20 season."
The Rams will officially kick off their 2019-20 campaign on Tuesday, Nov. 5 when they host defending Northeast Conference Regular Season Champion and NIT participant St. Francis (Pa.). A home contest with North Texas, which won 21 games a year ago, follows on Nov. 8.
VCU will play host to defending SEC regular season champion LSU on Wednesday, Nov. 13 at the Stuart C. Siegel Center in one of the most-anticipated contests in the building's 20-year history.
The Rams will meet Purdue, which advanced to the Elite Eight and finished the season ranked No. 13 in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll, at the Emerald Coast Classic on Nov. 29 in Niceville, Fla. VCU will advance to face either Florida State or Tennessee, both Sweet 16 participants in 2019, on Nov. 30.
The Black and Gold welcome rival and defending Conference USA Champion Old Dominion at the Siegel Center on Saturday, Dec. 7. The Rams will test themselves with road contests at Charleston (Dec. 18), a 24-9 club last season, and Wichita State (Dec. 21), which received an NIT bid in 2018-19.
VCU welcomes Jacksonville State to Richmond on Nov. 17. The Gamecocks were 24-9 last season, including 15-3 in Ohio Valley Conference play. The Rams will also host Alabama State on Nov. 25, Missouri State on Dec. 15 and Loyola (Md.) on Dec. 29.
The Rams are coming off a 25-8 season in which they captured the outright Atlantic 10 Conference regular season title and reached the NCAA Tournament for the eighth time in nine seasons. VCU returns four starters and eight of its top nine scorers, including All-Atlantic 10 First Team selection Marcus Evans (Chesapeake, Va.).
Season tickets for the 2019-20 are still available. Please call the ticket office at 804-828-7267 for more information or to reserve your seats today!
VCU MEN'S BASKETBALL
2019-20 NON-CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
DATE OPPONENT TIME TV
Oct. 26 TBA (Exhibition) 7 p.m.
Nov. 5 ST. FRANCIS (Pa.) TBA
Nov. 8 NORTH TEXAS TBA
Nov. 13 LSU 6 p.m. ESPN2
Nov. 17 ^JACKSONVILLE STATE TBA
Nov. 23 FLORIDA GULF COAST TBA
Nov. 25 ^ALABAMA STATE TBA
Nov. 29 &vs. Purdue 9:30 p.m. CBSSN
Nov. 30 &vs. Florida St./Tennessee 4/7 p.m. CBSSN*
Dec. 7 OLD DOMINION TBA
Dec. 15 MISSOURI STATE TBA
Dec. 18 at Charleston TBA
Dec. 21 at Wichita State TBA
Dec. 29 LOYOLA (Md.) 5 p.m. NBCSN
Home games in CAPS and played at the Stuart C. Siegel Center
All times Eastern Standard Time (EST) and subject to change
^ – Emerald Coast Classic campus game
& - Emerald Coast Classic (Niceville, Fla.)
* - Championship Game broadcast on CBS Sports Network