2007-08 Men's Basketball Schedule Announced
June 7, 2007
BERKELEY - The 2007-08 California men's basketball schedule features eight non-conference opponents that won at least 20 games last season, six of which played in the postseason, and includes 18 games inside Haas Pavilion, Golden Bear head coach Ben Braun announced today.
Three of Cal's non-conference foes advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2007 - Nevada, Jackson State and Long Beach State - while two others appeared in the National Invitation Tournament - San Diego State, Kansas State and Delaware State.
'We played one of the strongest schedules in the country last year, and this year's schedule could be even more difficult,' said Braun. 'We will face some very strong teams from good conferences, and the Pac-10 will be as challenging as ever. It is a schedule I believe our fans will really enjoy.'
Last year, Cal's schedule ranked as the sixth hardest in the nation in the Sagarin Ratings, No. 13 by collegerpi.com and kenpom.com, and No. 20 by espn.com.
The Bears begin the campaign at home Nov. 14 when they host Southern Mississippi, a team that returns all five starters after finishing 20-11 last year. Following a home date vs. Nicholls State Nov. 19, Cal will meet San Diego State Nov. 24 in Haas Pavilion - the fourth consecutive year the schools will face each other. The Aztecs were 22-11 in '06-07 and reached the second round of the NIT.
On Nov. 28, the Bears make one of two non-Pac-10 road trips with a visit to Nevada. The Wolf Pack advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last year, finishing 29-5 and posting a 15-1 record on its home floor in Reno.
Cal returns to Berkeley Dec. 1 to play Missouri in the Pac-10/Big 12 Series. The Tigers were 18-12 overall last year, including a 7-9 conference mark.
Jackson State, which won the SWAC title and lost to eventual champion Florida in the first round of the NCAA tourney, visits Haas Pavilion Dec. 5. The Tigers were 21-14 last year with non-conference victories coming at Rutgers and Texas-El Paso.
The Bears return to the road to face Kansas State Dec. 9 - their second Big 12 opponent. The Wildcats were 23-12 this past season and reached the second round of the NIT, but lost to Cal by a 78-48 score last December. The game marks the first time Cal will play in Manhattan, Kan., since 1957-58.
Following a break for fall final exams, the Bears close out their pre-conference slate at home, starting with a Delaware State squad Dec. 20 that was 21-13 overall and 16-2 in the MEAC last year and reached the NIT. Utah then makes its first appearance in Berkeley since 1966-67 when the Utes, who return all five starters from last season, visit Dec. 22.
The 15th annual Golden Bear Classic, which will run Dec. 28-29, features three teams that won 20 or more games last year - Bucknell (22-9), North Dakota State (20-8) and Long Beach State (24-8). Bucknell finished 13-1 in the Patriot League in 2007, but missed out on a return trip to the NCAA Tournament when it lost in the conference tournament final, while Long Beach State is the reigning Big West champion and earned an NCAA invitation last season. Among North Dakota State's victories was a win at Marquette.
The Pac-10 schedule begins Jan. 3 when Cal hosts USC, followed by a home contest against UCLA two days later. Stanford visits Haas Pavilion Jan. 26 to conclude a three-game homestand that begins with games vs. Arizona State and Arizona.
The Bears wrap up the year against UCLA and USC in Los Angeles March 6-8, then return to Southern California for the Pac-10 Tournament March 12-15 in the Staples Center.
All dates are subject to change and won't be finalized until the television schedule is announced prior to the start of the season.
For a complete look at the schedule, click here