The 12-game slate includes
seven home games to be played on Doug Collins Court at Redbird Arena
and five to be played on the road, including a pair to be played in
Texas at the South Padre Island Invitational in November. Muller and
his staff worked hard to secure games that would benefit his team,
and he was pleased with the way the nonconference schedule unfolded.
"I'm excited about the nonconference schedule we've put together,"
Muller said. "When I was hired, I outlined several goals for what we
want to accomplish with our nonconference schedule. The first is to
prepare our team for a tough Missouri Valley Conference schedule,
and I think this schedule will do that. The second is to get our
players experience in tough environments against good teams,
especially on the road, and the last is to bolster our team and
program the best chance for postseason play."
The Redbirds will play an exhibition game against in-state foe
Quincy on Nov. 5 and will officially open the season Nov. 12 at home
against UC-Santa Barbara, which finished with a 20-11 overall record
last season. ISU will then hit the road for the first time Nov. 15,
for the start of home-and-home series with Drexel, the 2012
regular-season champions of the Colonial Athletic Association.
Drexel posted a 29-7 overall record last season before falling to
Massachusetts 72-70 in the third round of the National Invitation
Following the road contest against the Dragons, the Redbirds will
host Delaware State (Nov. 18) and Fairleigh Dickinson (Nov. 20) in
the on-campus portion of the South Padre Invitational. The team will
then travel to Texas for the Nov. 23-24 tournament and will open
play on Nov. 23 against UAB. ISU will then play either TCU or
Northwestern on Nov. 24 in the second game of the tournament at the
South Padre Island Convention Center.
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A Dec. 1 game at Louisville at the Yum! Center will be next
on the docket for the Redbirds. Louisville is projected by many
pontificators to be ranked in the top five nationally in the
preseason polls and to be a favorite in the Big East, after
qualifying for the NCAA tournament last season and posting a
30-10 overall record.
ISU will then return home for three straight games, beginning
with a Dec. 4 matchup against Wyoming as part of the Mountain West
-- Missouri Valley Challenge. Western Michigan will visit next for a
Dec. 8 contest, and the three-game homestand will conclude with a
Dec. 16 tilt against Morgan State.
The final road game of the nonconference season will take place
Dec. 19 against Dayton, which finished tied for fifth in the
Atlantic-10 Conference last season and posted an overall mark of
20-13, while earning an NIT berth. ISU's final game before starting
Missouri Valley Conference play will be Dec. 22 against Austin Peay.
"I think we have a good balance of home and road games with this
schedule," Muller said. "The road games at Louisville, Dayton and
Drexel will be strong challenges for our team, as will the South
Padre Island Invitational. Overall, I'm very happy with the way the
schedule turned out."
Travel information for the South Padre Island Invitational and
other select road games will be announced at a later date on
news release from Illinois State University]