The University of Notre Dame basketball team officially announced its non-conference slate Thursday afternoon.
Many of the opponents were already known and most of the dates are to be determined.
The Irish will open on the road for the first time since 1999 (when David Graves hit a buzzer-beater to defeat No. 4 Ohio State) when they square off at DePaul as the Blue Demons open up their new on-campus arena on Nov. 11. This is the same day the football team plays Miami, so it will be interesting to see if they move the time around depending on the football game.
Although DePaul has been a basement dweller in the Big East for most of the last decade, the Irish are sure to encounter a hostile atmosphere. This will be the 107th meeting between ND and DePaul (second longest series in ND history behind their series with Marquette) and the Irish lead the all-time series 62-40.
Notre Dame then plays two games before their trip to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. The Irish take on 2017 NEC Champions Mount St. Mary’s before playing Chicago State in a pair of manageable home games.
Thanksgiving week brings Notre Dame’s third appearance in the Maui Invitational and their first since 2008. In 2008, the Irish defeated Indiana and Texas before falling to No. 1 and eventual national champion North Carolina in the championship game.
The field in Maui includes the Irish, Wichita State, Michigan, Marquette, LSU, VCU, Cal, and Chaminade. The bracket will be released later this summer, but because the brackets are 100% dictated by ESPN, it’s almost guaranteed that the Irish and Shockers will be on opposite sides of the bracket.
The field is strong and Wichita State is expected to be a preseason top-10 team, which will provide ND an opportunity to lay a strong early foundation to their resume before the calendar flips to December.
After Notre Dame arrives back on the mainland, they have eight days off before they face Michigan State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge – their sternest non-conference test.
The Spartans will be the consensus preseason No. 1 team and this contest will mark Notre Dame’s first trip to Breslin Center.
After not playing since 1979, ND and Michigan State squared off in the 2014 edition of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Led by Jerian Grand and Pat Connaughton, the Irish won a thrilling overtime game 79-78. This will be the 96th meeting between the Irish and Spartans – the fourth longest series in ND history.
In the first week of December, the Irish face St. Francis-Brooklyn and in-state foe Ball State before they travel to Delaware for a rare road game against a mid-major program.
The matchup with Delaware is an olive branch from Brey to second-year UD head coach and former ND assistant Martin Ingelsby. Delaware, the site of Brey’s first gig as a head coach, is annually at the bottom of the CAA standings. Although this will be the biggest home game in Delaware history, the Irish will cruise.
After a week off for exams, ND makes their annual trek down Route 31 to take on Indiana in the Crossroads Classic. Notre Dame is coming off back-to-back second half chokes in this event.
The Irish led by as many as 17 in the second half before the Hoosiers mounted a huge comeback for an improbable win in 2015. Notre Dame also squandered a 19-point halftime lead of Purdue in this event this past season.
With new coach Archie Miller at the helm and plenty of roster turnover in Bloomington, the Hoosiers will be an underdog in this matchup.
This is one of the more underrated events on the college basketball calendar, but the Irish travel the worst out of the three other teams participating and are faced with a road atmosphere every year.
This meeting will be the 71st all-time between ND and IU. If the Irish meet Marquette in the Maui Invitational, they will face four of the top six most prolific series in program history.
Notre Dame will then wrap up their conference slate with a pair of gimmie home games over the Christmas break. The Irish will face Dartmouth on Dec. 19 and conclude their non-conference schedule with Southeastern Louisiana (AKA The Delatte Bowl) on Dec. 21.
The details of the ACC schedule will not be released until late summer, but the Irish know who their home and away opponents will be.
Home: Florida State, Miami, Virginia Tech, Louisville, Pitt, Boston College, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, NC State
Away: Clemson, Duke, Wake Forest, Virginia, Syracuse, Boston College, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, NC State.