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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Key games on Arizona men’s basketball schedule

Heather Newberry
Wilbur Wildcat waves the UA flag before the annual men’s basketball McDonald’s Red-Blue game on Oct. 20 in McKale Center.

The Pac-12 posted their official schedule of games for the 2018-2019 season last week, with Arizona receiving a pretty favorable draw this upcoming season.

Arizona kicks off the season with the annual Red-Blue scrimmage on Oct. 14 at noon, local time, and the schedule is highlighted by a trip to a loaded Maui Invitational and road games at both the University of Connecticut and the University of Alabama.

Here are some of the most intriguing matchups on the schedule this season:

November 19-21 – Maui Invitational

Arizona heads out to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational, a tournament they won when they went last in 2014. Their first matchup is against an Iowa State University team that returns four starters, with a matchup against either Gonzaga University or the University of Illinois waiting in the second round. The field this year is loaded, with Duke University, as well as Auburn University, Xavier University and San Diego State University.

December 9 – @ Alabama 

Alabama took the Wildcats down to the wire in Tucson last season. Gone is NBA lottery pick Collin Sexton, but Alabama returns three starters and five rotation players from their tournament team last season, led by Donta Hall and John Petty. 

December 15 – Baylor University

The big home game of the non-conference schedule will also be the latest start time for a game in McKale Center this season, as the Baylor Bears will travel in to play at 9 p.m. local time. Baylor lost the top-four scorers from their NIT team last season but will have the services of Yale University transfer Makai Mason, who scored 31 points on Baylor in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament in 2016.

Arizona State Men's Basketball Head Coach Bobby Hurley shouts at a referee during the Arizona-Arizona State game on Thursday, Feb. 15 in Wells Fargo Arena in Phoenix, Ariz.
Arizona State Men’s Basketball Head Coach Bobby Hurley shouts at a referee during the Arizona-Arizona State game on Thursday, Feb. 15 in Wells Fargo Arena in Phoenix, Ariz.

January 31 – @ Arizona State University

While not much of a rivalry in the past, the hiring of Bobby Hurley has injected new life into the ASU basketball program. ASU returns two starters to a team that was once ranked as high as No. 3 in the nation last season before losing in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Hurley adds a talented recruiting class and San Diego State transfer Zylan Cheatham and Cleveland State transfer Rob Edwards. 

March 2 – University of Oregon

If the Wildcats want to win their third straight Pac-12 title, the road there probably goes though the Oregon Ducks. Oregon returns point guard Payton Pritchard, and reloads with a top-five recruiting class, led by former UA target Bol Bol.

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