The College of Charleston men’s basketball program has finalized its non-conference schedule for the 2017-2018 season, a slate that includes more than 10,000 miles of airline travel and five opponents that advanced to postseason play last season.
“It was really important that we create a tough non-conference schedule as we prepare for the challenging CAA slate,” said head coach Earl Grant.
Game times, televised games and the team’s full conference schedule will be released at a later date.
BY THE NUMBERS
Preseason conference ranking by preseason publications such as Athlon, Blue Ribbon Yearbook and Sporting News.
Number of air miles logged-in during the non-conference season with road trips to Wichita, Kan., Anchorage, Alaska and Kingston, R.I.
Number of first-time opponents on this year’s non-conference schedule (Siena, Cal Poly, Central Michigan, Sam Houston State).
Number of teams ranked in the NCAA Top 100 RPI index last season: Wichita State (29), Rhode Island (31), CSU Bakersfield (59). College of Charleston finished the year rated No. 65 in the nation and earned an at-large bid to the 2017 National Invitation Tournament.
Number of teams who advanced to postseason play last season. Rhode Island and Wichita State each earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament; CSU Bakersfield participated in the NIT, while Coastal Carolina played in the CBI and Idaho took part in the CIT.
Returning members of the Cougars’ starting lineup. Led by All-CAA First Team selection Joe Chealey and All-CAA Second Team honoree Jarrell Brantley, the Cougars also return CAA All-Defensive Team selection Cameron Johnson, CAA All-Rookie Team selection Grant Riller, and junior Nick Harris.
A GAME-BY-GAME LOOK AT THE NON-CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
11.2.17 | BOB JONES UNIVERSITY (exh.)
The Cougars will meet the Bruins for the first time on the hardwood in exhibition play at TD Arena. Last fall, Bob Jones hosted CofC during Hurricane Matthew on its college campus in Greenville, S.C.
11.10.17 | SIENA
CofC and Siena will officially kick-off the 2017-18 college basketball season at TD Arena. It will be a first-time meeting between both schools. The Cougars are 14-2 all-time in home openers since 1991-92. In the Earl Grant Era, CofC is 3-0 in season openers. This will be the first time the Cougars will face a MAAC-member school since playing Marist in December of 2013. The Saints knocked off top-seeded Monmouth in the MAAC semifinals last season before falling to Iona in the MAAC Championship.
11.13.17 | @ WICHITA STATE
Second all-time meeting since facing each other in the 2011 NIT Quarterfinals (L, 75-82) on March 23, 2011. The game will be a reunion of sorts for Coach Grant and Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall, who Grant served under as an assistant coach at Wichita State (2007-2010) and Winthrop (2004-2007). Marshall served as an assistant under legendary CofC head coach John Kresse from 1988-1996.
11.18.17 | @ CHARLOTTE
Charlotte leads the series 12-9. The last two meetings between both schools have been thrillers. Joe Chealey scored a then-career high 30 points in a 2OT thriller in Charlotte. The 49ers are coached by former NBA point guard Mark Price, who played for former CofC head coach Bobby Cremins at Georgia Tech from 1982-86.
11.22.17 | vs. CAL POLY @ GCI GREAT ALASKA SHOOTOUT
First-ever meeting between the two schools from the Colonial Athletic Association and Big West Conference. The Cougars won the Great Alaska Shootout in 2002 with a thrilling 71-69 win over Villanova in the championship. Cal Poly redshirt junior forward Josh Martin is the team’s top returner after averaging nearly a double-double last season (10.8 points and 8.4 rebounds).
11.23.17 | vs. CENTRAL MICHIGAN or SAM HOUSTON STATE @ GCI GREAT ALASKA SHOOTOUT
Possible first-time meetings in the consolation semifinals or semifinals of the Great Alaska Shootout.
11.30.17 | WESTERN CAROLINA
The Cougars lead 21-7 against their former Southern Conference rivals and won on their home court last season (W, 77-59). The Catamounts return redshirt senior guard Haboubacar Mutombo, who claimed NCCSIA All-State honors last season.
12.4.17 | HIGH POINT
The Cougars lead the series, 3-2, and first meeting since 1981 (W, 93-49) on Nov. 20, 1981 in Charleston, S.C. High Point finished 15-16 last season with four players averaging in double digits. Andre Fox is the team’s top returner after averaging 12.7 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 2.2 assists per game.
12.10.17 | NORTH GREENVILLE
Second-ever meeting with the NCAA Division II school.
12.16.17 | @ RHODE ISLAND
Third-ever meeting with Rhode Island. Last played URI (L, 66-75) on Nov. 19, 2010 as part of the 2K Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in Toledo, Ohio. The Rams advanced to the Round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament last season, where they fell to eventual Final Four participant Oregon, 75-72.
12.19.17 | SOUTH CAROLINA STATE
CofC leads 12-8 and last played the Bulldogs in their season home opener in Coach Grant’s second year with the Cougars (W, 74-54). The Bulldogs made it to the second round of the MEAC Tournament before falling to Norfolk State, 93-88.
12.22.17 | @ COASTAL CAROLINA
CofC leads the all-time series, 35-13, after defeating the Chanticleers 71-64 on Nov. 14, 2016 in Conway, S.C. The game was the first time the two schools had played each other in Coastal’s new arena. Coastal went 20-19 last season, and advanced to the championship game of the CBI against Wyoming. Jaylen Shaw is the team’s top returner after averaging 14 points per game in 2016-17.
-per CofC Athletics