The 2013-14 Sun Devil men's basketball season will begin Nov. 8 against Maryland-Baltimore County in the earliest start date in school history, and that game will mark the first of 13 broadcasts on the Pac-12 Network this year as the Pac-12 has announced its full men's basketball television schedule. ASU will play nine games in a 23-day span to start the season and its Friday, Feb. 14 tilt against Arizona in Tempe will be a 7 p.m. ESPN game.
SUN DEVIL MEN'S HOOPS 2013-14 NON-CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
Fri., Nov. 8 vs. Maryland-Baltimore County, 6 p.m., P12N
Tues., Nov. 12 vs. Miami (Ohio), 7 p.m., P12N
Fri., Nov. 15 vs. Idaho State, 7 p.m., P12N
Tues., Nov. 19 at UNLV
Fri., Nov. 22 vs. Bradley, 7 p.m., P12N
Mon., Nov. 25 vs. Marquette, 7 p.m., FS1
Thurs., Nov. 28 vs. Creighton at Wooden Legacy (Fullerton, Calif.), 8 p.m. PT/9 p.m. MT, ESPN2
Fri. Nov. 29 vs. San Diego State/College of Charleston at Wooden Legacy (Fullerton , Calif.)
Sun., Dec. 1 at Wooden Legacy (Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.)
Fri., Dec. 6 at DePaul, (time and TV TBD)
Sat., Dec. 14 vs. Grambling, Noon, P12N
Sat., Dec. 21 vs. Texas Tech, 4:30 p.m., P12N
Sat., Dec. 28 vs. UC-Irvine, Noon, P12N
Thurs., Jan. 2 vs. Washington, 6 p.m., ESPNU
Sun., Jan. 5 vs. Washington State, 4 p.m., ESPNU
Thurs., Jan. 9 at USC 7 p.m. PT/8 p.m. MT, P12N
Sun., Jan. 12 at UCLA 7 p.m. PT/8 p.m. MT, ESPNU
Thurs., Jan. 16 at Arizona, 7 p.m. MT, FS1
Thurs., Jan. 23 vs. Utah, 7 p.m. MT, P12N
Sat., Jan. 25 vs. Colorado, 5 p.m. MT, P12N
Wed., Jan. 29 at California, 8 p.m. PT/9 p.m. MT, ESPNU
Sat., Feb. 1 at Stanford, 1 p.m. PT/2 p.m. MT P12N
Thurs., Feb. 6 vs. Oregon State, 9 p.m. MT, FS1
Sat., Feb. 8 vs. Oregon, 1 p.m. MT, FS1
Fri., Feb. 14 vs. Arizona, 7 p.m. MT, ESPN
Wed., Feb. 19 at Colorado, 9 p.m. MT, ESPNU
Sun., Feb. 23 at Utah, 6 p.m. MT, ESPNU
Wed., Feb. 26 vs. Stanford, 9 p.m. MT, ESPNU
Sat., Mar. 1 vs. California, 4 p.m. MT, P12N
Tue., Mar. 4 at Oregon, 8 p.m. PT/9 p.m. MT, FS1
Sat., Mar. 8 at Oregon State, 1:30 p.m. PT/2:30 MT, P12N
Some random notes on the schedule:
EARLY OPENER: The Sun Devils will open the season against Maryland-Baltimore County on Friday, Nov. 8, at 6 p.m. on Pac-12 Network in what will be the earliest start date in school history. Twice the Sun Devils have opened on Nov. 10, but Nov. 8 will be the earliest the school has opened a season and also the earliest Coach Sendek has opened a season. How much has the college basketball calendar changed? In Coach Sendek's first season at Miami of Ohio in 1993-94, his opener was on Nov. 27. ASU will have played six games by Nov. 27. His Miami squad didn't play its second game until Dec. 3. ASU will have played nine games by Dec. 3 in 2013-14.
WELCOME FS1: Arizona State will appear on Fox Sports 1 (FS1) five times, with the first time on Monday, Nov. 25 against strong Marquette, with the game tipping in Tempe at 7 p.m. MT. Marquette is one of the best teams in the nation the past eight seasons and the Golden Eagles have been a consistent member of summer top-25 for this season. ASU will return the trip to Milwaukee in 2014-15. Marquette has been a top-30 RPI team in six of the past eight seasons, including No. 12 in 2012-13 when it reached the Elite Eight, and has advanced to the Sweet Sixteen in each of the past three seasons. It has made made eight straight NCAA Tournaments, the sixth-best current streak in the nation. Only Kansas (24), Duke (18), Michigan State (16), Gonzaga (15) and Wisconsin (15) have better current marks. The Golden Eagles also have posted eight straight 20-win seasons.
ESPNU: The Sun Devils will appear on ESPNU seven times during Pac-12 season, including back-to-back appearances to open the Pac-12 season. ASU will host Washington on Jan. 2 at 6 p.m. and then hosts Washington State on Sunday, Jan. 5, at 4 p.m., with both of those games on ESPNU.
SUN DEVIL SCORING NUGGET: Scoring in D-I men's basketball was at its lowest point since 1951-52 last year as teams averaged 67.5 ppg. Meanwhile in Tempe, ASU went from averaging 61.0 ppg. in 2011-12 to 71.8 ppg. in 2012-13.
DEC. 28 A SLEEPY-GOOD GAME: ASU will host UC Irvine in its final non-conference game on Saturday, Dec. 28 at noon. UC Irvine's 2012-13 season included a 21-16 record (11-7 Big West) and the program's first postseason appearance in 11 years as the 'Eaters advanced to the second round of the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT). The 21 wins were the most for the program in the last 11 years and tied for third-most in a season in the 48-year history of the university. The 11 conference victories were the most in 10 years for UCI. The 'Eaters advanced to the championship game of the Big West Conference Tournament for the fourth time in history and the first time in the last five years. UCI topped Hawai'i and No. 1 seed Long Beach State before falling to Pacific in the final.
BRIEFLY ON ASU LAST YEAR: The Sun Devils (22-13 and 9-9, tied for sixth in Pac-12) notched their fourth 20-win season under Coach Sendek in his seven years in 2012-13, something that ASU did just three times in the prior 25 seasons to his arrival in spring of 2006. Jahii Carson, the Pac-12's co-Freshman of the Year in 2012-13, returns in 2013-14 and his play in the final six games had heads turning with these numbers: 22.5 ppg., 6.0 rpg., 5.0 apg., .551 from the field, .500 from the three-point stripe and .800 from the free throw line. Jahii is one of only three All-Pac-12 first-team players returning next season (Dwight Powell of Stanford and Spencer Dinwiddie of Colorado are the others).
AWESOME JAHII NOTE: Jahii averaged 18.5 points and 5.1 assists last season, the first freshman to do that since Chris McGuthrie of Mount St. Mary's notched the feat in 1992-93 (19.8/.5.1). Senior Jordan Bachynski, who set the Pac-12 and Sun Devil season record with 120 blocks last year, will anchor the front line.
GOOD GAME TO GET: Less than 300 miles from Tempe, UNLV played in its fourth straight NCAA Tournament in 2012-13 and their sixth in the last seven years, one of just a dozen programs nationally have matched that and it is tops in the Mountain West over that span. Head coach Dave Rice led UNLV to another 25-win season in 2012-13 and the 51 wins by the program over the last two seasons is the most by a UNLV coach after his first two years leading the program (Jerry Tarkanian had 44 wins in his first two years). UNLV won four games over ranked teams last year and returns two starters and six players overall from that team. Three additional players redshirted last year and five newcomers will be welcomed for 2013-14. ASU will then host the Runnin' Rebels in 2014-15.
ABOUT THAT MIAMI OF OHIO GAME: ASU will welcome Miami of Ohio on Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. on Pac-12 Network, the school where Herb Sendek earned his first head coaching position. From 1993-96 he compiled a 63-26 (.708) mark and three postseason appearances, including a NCAA second-round appearance in 1995 when Miami upset Arizona in the first round in Dayton. ASU then welcomes Idaho State on Nov. 15.
WOODEN LEGACY: ASU and Marquette also will be a part of The Wooden Legacy, an all-new multi-team collegiate basketball tournament, during the 2013 Thanksgiving holiday in Orange County. The tournament was formed with the former John R. Wooden Classic and the Anaheim Classic, the eight-team, three-day, 12-game bracketed event that has been staged the past six years in Anaheim, one that ASU took part in November of 2008. With the expansion, the 2013 Wooden Legacy will be held at two sites. The opening two rounds will be played at Titan Gym on the campus of Cal State Fullerton on Thursday, Nov. 28 and Friday, Nov. 29. The games then move to Honda Center with four placement contests including the championship game between the remaining unbeaten schools on Sunday, Dec. 1. The 12 games will air across ESPN networks. Joining Arizona State in the 2013 Wooden Legacy will be NCAA Championship participants Creighton (28-8 with Doug McDermott returning), ACC champion Miami (Fla.) (29-7) and San Diego State (23-11). Cal State Fullerton, College of Charleston (24-10 in 2012-13) and George Washington are also in the field. Cal State Fullerton is coached by seven-year Sun Devil assistant coach Dedrique Taylor, who is the tenth former Coach Sendek assistant to earn a Division I head coaching job, including eight currently.
ABOUT THAT DEPAUL TRIP: After returning from southern California over Thanksgiving, ASU will head to Chicago to take on DePaul on Friday, Dec. 6, in a state that is full of Sun Devils. More than 7,100 Sun Devil alumni call Illinois home, the fourth-largest Sun Devil following outside Arizona, behind only California (35,000+), Texas (10,000+) and Colorado (8,200+).
VISIT FROM TUBBY AND FINALS WEEK CHATTER: After playing its first nine games in a 23-day span, ASU takes some time off for final exams and plays just once in the next 13 days, facing Grambling in Tempe on Dec. 14 at noon, before it hosts the Tubby Smith-led Texas Tech Red Raiders on Dec. 21 at 4:30 and both games are on the Pac-12 Network. Smith and Coach Sendek were on the same staff at Kentucky under Rick Pitino which also included Billy Donovan in the early 1990s.