MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – An appearance in the Preseason WNIT and at least 15 home games highlight the 2012-13 Middle Tennessee women's basketball schedule, as announced Sunday by Director of Athletics Chris Massaro and head coach Rick Insell.
"We're excited about this year's schedule," Insell said. "With the Sun Belt moving to 20 conference games, our non-conference schedule was shortened. However, we were able to maintain a quality list of nationally-prominent opponents, including Tennessee, Kentucky, South Dakota State, Xavier and UCF, while also facing two strong regional foes in Austin Peay and Tennessee Tech.
"There are 10 games on this year's slate against postseason teams from a year ago, including five against NCAA Tournament participants and two programs (Tennessee and Kentucky) that advanced to the Elite 8."
After two exhibition contests open November, the Blue Raiders will play host to a pair of Preseason WNIT games against Kennesaw State and a to-be-determined Second Round opponent to begin the regular season, Nov. 9 and 11, respectively. The Second Round foe most likely will be either Memphis or Grambling, based upon the current bracket setup. The third guaranteed game of the tournament is slated for Nov. 15, and should MT advance to the championship, it will play again three days later.
Middle Tennessee then hits the road for
four straight, including a pair of in-state trips to Cookeville, Tenn., to face
Tennessee Tech (Nov. 20) and Knoxville, Tenn., to battle Tennessee (Nov. 28).
Those two games will sandwich the first Sun Belt tilt of the campaign, a Nov.
24 trip to Lafayette, La., to square off against Louisiana.
The four-game swing concludes Dec. 1 in Brookings, S.D., against South Dakota State.
Middle Tennessee returns home Dec. 4 against Austin Peay before welcoming Xavier to the historic Murphy Center two days later. The last game before fall semester final exams will be a trip to Lexington, Ky., to face Kentucky Dec. 9 in the annual clash.
Following an 11-day break, the Blue Raiders will return to the friendly confines of the historic Murphy Center where they won 13 times a year ago for a three-game set, the longest of the season. The stretch begins with FIU (Dec. 20) and continues against North Texas (Dec. 27) and UCF (Dec. 30) to conclude the calendar year.
After the New Year, Middle Tennessee only will face Sun Belt opponents the remainder of the schedule as each school plays a home-and-home with everyone else around the league.
The Blue Raiders have four home games apiece in January and February, starting with Florida Atlantic (Jan. 9), UALR (Jan. 16), Louisiana (Jan. 19) and Western Kentucky (Jan. 27). The final four contests in Murfreesboro include Arkansas State (Feb. 6), Troy (Feb. 10), South Alabama (Feb. 20) and ULM (Feb. 23).
After finishing the regular season with
road trips to Troy and Western Kentucky, Middle Tennessee will head to Hot
Springs, Ark., for the Sun Belt Championships, March 8-11.
Season ticket information is available by calling the Blue Raider ticket office at 1-888-YES-MTSU or visiting GoBlueRaiders.com. Times for all games will be announced at a later date.