The matchups for the bracketed portion of the 2017 2K Classic were announced via a release on Monday with Providence facing off against Washington and Virginia Tech and Saint Louis filling out the other half of the bracket. The Friars will also play Houston Baptist and Belmont in the campus site portion of the 2K Classic with the Houston Baptist game opening Providence’s season on campus at Alumni Hall due to a scheduling conflict at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. The Friars game against Washington will be the later game at Madison Square Garden on November 16th. The Virginia Tech/Saint Louis game tips at 7pm. Both games will be on ESPN2 that night.
Providence’s non-conference schedule for the 2017-18 season was released on Thursday and the season will start with a rare occurrence: Providence playing a regular season game at Mullaney Gymnasium at Alumni Hall. Providence opens the season on November 10th and they will play their first non-exhibition game on campus since 1972. The schedule also includes a game against Minnesota as part of the third annual Gavitt Tipoff Games, a game against Houston at Mohegan Sun and the traditional in-state rivalry game with the Rhode Island Rams on the first Saturday of December. Stay tuned to the site for a full analysis and breakdown of each of Providence’s non-conference opponents.
Here’s the full non-conference schedule (note you can subscribe to the pcbb1917.com calendar at that link to get all games and other Friar hoops events, like Ed Cooley radio show dates, on your phone’s calendar):
Providence’s non-conference schedule continues to come together. Jon Rothstein reported that the Friars will host Minnesota as part of the Gavitt Tipoff Games.
Providence will host Minnesota in the 2017 Gavitt Games, per a source. #pcbb
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) May 20, 2017
This will be the third season of the Gavitt Tipoff Games, which pits Big East teams against Big Ten teams for eight games each season with four games being played at a Big East school and the other four at a Big Ten school. The games are all played on consecutive days during each season’s first week of play. The series is currently set to run through 2022. Providence beat Illinois at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center — on Dave Gavitt Court — in the inaugural Gavitt Tipoff Games in 2015 and lost at Ohio State last season in Columbus.
Minnesota is coached by Providence alumnus Richard Pitino. Pitino, who recently signed a contract extension, was named the Big Ten Coach of the Year after his Golden Gophers team won 24 games, including 11 Big Ten wins which was the most league wins Minnesota has had since 1990. Minnesota was a 5-seed in the NCAA Tournament but fell to 12-seed Middle Tennessee. The Golden Gophers return 11 players from last season’s team and have top-60 point guard Isaiah Washington and 3-star combo guard Jamir Harris coming in as freshmen for 2017-18. Expect to see Minnesota ranked in the Top 25 when this game tips off.
The campus site matchups for the 2017 2K Classic were just announced a few days ago, so those two games against Houston Baptist and Belmont, respectively, bring the total number of known non-conference matchups to 10. The Friars will also face in-state rivals Brown and Rhode Island and regional rivals Boston College and Massachusetts.
Here’s the updated list of known non-conference games:
- Houston Baptist at home – November 10th
- Minnesota at home (Gavitt Tipoff Games)
- Two of Saint Louis/Virginia Tech/Washington at MSG – November 16th and 17th
- Belmont at home – November 22nd
- Houston at Mohegan Sun Arena – December 20th
- Rhode Island at the Ryan Center
- Brown at home
- Massachusetts at the Mullins Center
- Boston College at home
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Providence will open their 2017-18 season against Houston Baptist on November 10th as part of the campus site portion of the 2017 2K Classic, per a release. The Friars will also face Belmont on November 22nd at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center as part of this event that will benefit Wounded Warrior Project. Providence is joined by Saint Louis, Virginia Tech and Washington as the four headline teams that will face-off at Madison Square Garden on November 16th and 17th in the Championship Round. Those matchups have yet to be announced.
Jon Rothsein is reporting that the Providence Friars are heading back to the Mohegan Sun Arena in nearby Uncasville, CT for a neutral site matchup against the Houston Cougars on December 20th. Providence last played at Mohegan Sun in the 2014-15 season as part of the Hall of Fame Tipoff. The Friars defeated Florida State and Notre Dame to take home the trophy. This game, which Rothstein reported is likely to be part of a double-header, will just be a neutral site game and not part of a tournament. The Friars are playing in the 2017 2K Classic in November. It’s unclear if the deal will include a game or games at Providence and/or Houston.
The Big East Tournament got underway on Wednesday night and Providence’s quarterfinal matchup against Creighton at Madison Square Garden takes place later this evening. No coach likes to look ahead even a game but Providence fans can look all the way ahead to November 2017 beginning today. Fans now have the opportunity to purchase tickets to the 2017 2K Classic Championship Round that will feature the Friars as one of four headlining teams.
The Big East released their conference slate on Tuesday and they will have a second straight year with no true 5-game marathon on December 31st. Instead, the Big East will have a marathon of games on Martin Luther King, Jr Day on January 16th, the league announced on Monday afternoon. This is likely to avoid competing with the college football playoff that currently dominates viewership on New Year’s Eve. The NBA does have some marquee matchups on MLK Day in 2016-17, however.
The schedule also includes year 2 of the annual Gavitt Tipoff Games against foes from the Big Ten, which Providence will compete in on the road at Ohio State after taking on Illinois at home last season. All 90 league games will again be on national television with 9 games will be played on FOX, in addition to 3 non-league games featuring Big East teams being played on the broadcast network. The league’s deal with CBS continues with 2 games being played on CBS and 18 on CBS Sports Network with 15 of those 18 being league contests. Providence opens on the road for the second straight season when they will travel to the Cintas Center to take on the Xavier Musketeers. The Friars will welcome the defending national champion Villanova Wildcats to the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on February 1st and PC will look for their first ever road win at Marquette on January 28th, among some notable contests. Here is Providence’s 2016-17 Big East schedule: