LSU Basketball’s non-conference schedule is nearly set following Thursday’s announcement of the pairings for the SEC/Big 12 Challenge.
The defending SEC Champions will play no less than seven non-conference opponents that won at least 20 games last season. Six of those teams made a post-season appearance.
LSU opens the season on Friday, Nov. 8 at home in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center against Bowling Green.
Following that home opener, the Tigers will face their first road test of the season with a trip to VCU for a potential Top 25 match-up against a team that won 25 games a season ago (including 16 at home). The Rams lost in the opening round of the 2019 NCAA Tournament. The game pits head coach Will Wade against his former team for the first time since he left VCU to become the Tigers’ head coach.
After a two year hiatus, the Tigers return to the SEC/Big 12 Challenge with a trip to the University of Texas on January 25 as part of the 10-game showcase between the two conferences. The Longhorns won the post-season NIT tournament a year ago after winning 21 games in the regular season.
LSU will also travel to Jamaica for the 2019 Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic the weekend before Thanksgiving. The Tigers’ opponents for that two-game event have not yet been set.
Will Wade’s team will head to Los Angeles on Dec. 21 for a game against the University of Southern California as part of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame doubleheader at the Staples Center.
LSU’s home slate also includes a game against the University of Maryland-Baltimore County and Liberty University, a team that won 29 games a season ago and beat SEC Rival Mississippi State in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
UMBC is best known for becoming the only NCAA Tournament 16-seed to defeat a 1-seed when they bested the University of Virginia in 2018.