CHARLESTON, S.C. - Road trips to national powers Arizona, Alabama, and Wichita State, as well as a competitive home schedule, highlight a challenging 2012-2013 slate for the Charleston Southern Men's Basketball Team. CSU head coach Barclay Radebaugh announced the schedule on Tuesday.
An intriguing season opener at Charlotte, a home-and-home with East Tennessee State, and home dates with intercity rivals The Citadel and College of Charleston are sure to create excitement for a promising campaign.
"This is without a doubt the most attractive and challenging schedule during our time here at CSU," Radabaugh said. We have the privilege to host three outstanding basketball programs in the first semester in The Citadel, ETSU and College of Charleston. Those games combined with extremely tough road contests at ETSU, Arizona, Alabama and Wichita State should prepare our team to face a very rigorous Big South Conference schedule. We are excited to get started and are looking forward to the upcoming season."
The Bucs open the season with a stern test as they travel to Charlotte to take on the 49ers in the Queen City on Friday, Nov. 9. After the opener, CSU will head west to Tuscon to square off against Sean Miller's Arizona Wildcats on Nov. 11.
Following the long road trip to begin the year, CSU returns home to the friendly confines of Buccaneer Fieldhouse, where it went 12-2 a season ago en route to a 19-12 final overall record. The Bucs welcome Hiwassee College in the home opener on Thursday, Nov. 15, before hosting Radebaugh's alma mater, East Tennessee State, five days later on November 20. CSU will return that game a month later when they journey to Johnson City, Tenn. on Dec. 18 to face ETSU.
The final two games of the November docket will also be telling, beginning with a trip to Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Radebaugh and company will battle Alabama on Thanksgiving weekend, tipping off against the Crimson Tide on Friday, Nov. 23. Five days later, on Nov. 28, the Bucs return to what figures to be a great home atmosphere against College of Charleston, who dealt CSU a hard-fought 70-68 defeat at TD Arena last season.
Following a Dec. 1 contest against Barber Scotia, CSU aims for its fourth straight win over The Citadel in a Tuesday, Dec. 4, 7:30 p.m. tipoff. The Bucs posted a thrilling 68-61 win against the Bulldogs the last time the two teams met at the Buc Dome in 2010, and took advantage of a young Citadel team for an 88-69 triumph at McAllister Field House a year ago.
CSU will once again be challenged away from home the week prior to Christmas, as they meet East Tennessee State for the second time on Dec. 18, before heading to Kansas for a matchup with Wichita State on Dec. 20. The Shockers won 27 games and reached the NCAA Tournament last season, a year after winning the NIT title. Wichita State handed CSU an 85-57 defeat last year, and is led by Greg Marshall, the former Winthrop head coach and a close friend of Radebaugh's.
After a brief respite for Christmas and a nine-day layoff from game action, CSU has one more tune-up for Big South Conference play when it hosts Virginia Intermont on Saturday, December 29.
The rigors of the Big South schedule begin on Jan. 5, as CSU looks to continue its push toward the top of the league standings after finishing in a tie for third in 2011-12. First up is a road game at Radford on the 5th, as head coach Mike Jones looks to lead the Highlanders back from a last place finish in his first season at the helm.
Three of CSU's next four Big South contests are at home, beginning with in-state rival Winthrop in the conference home opener on Wednesday, Jan. 9 at 7:30 p.m., and continuing with UNC Asheville on Jan. 16 and High Point on Saturday, January 19.
The beginning of CSU's February's slate figures to be critical in the Big South race, as CSU travels to Coastal Carolina on Feb. 6, before playing host to Campbell Saturday, Feb. 9 at 5:30 p.m. The Bucs and Chanticleers have developed an intense rivalry in recent years, with seven of the last ten meetings being decided by four points or less. The Fighting Camels return plenty from their 2011-12 team, which tied CSU for third place in the regular season standings, meanwhile, and the two squads each held serve on their home court a year ago.
CSU faces off against two-time defending Big South champion UNC Asheville at Kimmel Arena on Saturday, Feb. 16, as the Bucs return to the spot where an excellent 2011-12 season ended in the Big South Tournament Semifinals.
The end of the February slate also contains highlights, as CSU hosts high-flying VMI on Thursday, February 21 in a matchup that is likely to produce constant end-to-end action. CSU then steps out of league play for its ESPN BracketBuster contest on Saturday, February 23, as the Bucs will play a to-be-determined opponent on the road a year after dominating Southern Conference power Wofford on senior night.
Jeremy Sexton and Mathiang Muo's senior night also has a chance to be a memorable one, as CSU opposes rival Coastal Carolina in the regular season finale on Saturday, March 2 in a 5:30 p.m. tipoff that is sure to have the Buc Dome rocking.
CSU will then head to Conway for the Big South Tournament, where they hope to take a leap forward from last year's semifinal appearance, which was the program's first since 2006. With the reigning Big South Coach of the Year in Radebaugh, and a trio of second-year assistants, on the sideline, two all-freshmen team performers in the backcourt, four returning starters and plenty of experience across the board.
2012-13 CHARLESTON SOUTHERN MEN'S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE
Date Opponent Location Time
Nov. 9 @ Charlotte Charlotte, N.C. 7 p.m.
Nov. 11 @ Arizona Tuscon, Az. 6 p.m.
Nov. 15 vs. Hiwassee Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
Nov. 20 vs. East Tennessee State Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 23 @ Alabama Tuscaloosa, Ala. TBD
Nov. 28 vs. College of Charleston Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 1 vs. Barber Scotia Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
Dec. 4 vs. The Citadel Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 18 @ East Tennessee State Johnson City, Tenn. 7 p.m.
Dec. 20 @ Wichita State Wichita, Kan. 8 p.m.
Dec. 29 vs. Virginia Intermont Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
Jan. 5 @ Radford* Radford, Va. TBD
Jan. 9 vs. Winthrop* Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 12 @ Longwood* Farmville, Va. TBD
Jan. 16 vs. UNC Asheville* Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 19 vs. High Point* Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
Jan. 23 @ Presbyterian* Clinton, S.C. TBD
Jan. 26 @ Liberty* Lynchburg, Va. 7 p.m.
Jan. 30 vs. Gardner-Webb* Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 6 @ Coastal Carolina* Conway, S.C. TBD
Feb. 9 vs. Campbell* Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
Feb. 13 @ Winthrop* Rock Hill, S.C. 7 p.m.
Feb. 16 @ UNC Asheville* Asheville, N.C. 2 p.m.
Feb. 19 vs. Presbyterian* Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 21 vs. VMI* Charleston, S.C. 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 23 @ ESPN BracketBuster TBD TBD
Feb. 27 @ Gardner-Webb* Boiling Springs, N.C. TBD
March 2 vs. Coastal Carolina* Charleston, S.C. 5:30 p.m.
March 5-10 @ Big South Tournament Conway, S.C. TBD
*= Big South Conference game