BALTIMORE - UMBC second-year head coach Ryan Odom announced the Retrievers' 2017-18 schedule, which features a school-record 31 regular season contests, including 15 games on the UMBC campus.
The Retrievers open the slate by taking on a pair of teams that will be competing in the 2017 Battle for Atlantis crown in late November. UMBC faces SMU in Dallas, Texas on Friday, Nov. 10 and then travels to Tucson, Ariz. for a match-up with Arizona on Sunday, Nov. 12. Both the Mustangs (30-5, including 18-0 at home in 2016-17) and Wildcats (32-5, Sweet 16 appearance) earned spots in last season's NCAA Tournament.
UMBC, which finished at 21-13 and captured an America East Conference record three victories in a post-season (CIT) tournament a year ago, opens the home slate against Central Penn College on Thursday, Nov. 16. After a trip to Colgate on Sunday, Dec. 19, UMBC will host their first in-season tournament since the 2000 Battle of Baltimore Tournament. The Retrievers welcome Chicago State in the Battle for Atlantis Mainland Tournament opening round game on Thanksgiving Day. Nicholls State and Presbyterian will also visit Baltimore for the holiday tournament with two games each on Thanksgiving and Black Friday.
After hosting Shenandoah on Nov. 27 to close out the month, UMBC will head to Charleston, S.C., to compete in The Citadel Tournament on Dec. 1 and 2. The Retrievers open by facing Army-West Point for the first time ever and they will take on either the host Bulldogs or Marist.
Odom's charges make return visits to Delaware State (Dec. 6) and Towson (Dec. 9) after both schools came to UMBC in the winter of 2016. After a home date with Coppin State on Tuesday, Dec. 12, the first meeting between the schools since 2013, the Retrievers compete against another pair of 2017 NCAA Tournament teams in back-to-back contests. UMBC hosts Northern Kentucky on Sunday., Dec. 17, then, after a welcomed holiday break, the black-and-gold will make the short trip down I-95 to face Maryland on Friday, Dec. 29. The sister institutions have not met on the hardwood since 2002.
UMBC completes the non-conference portion of the schedule on Sunday, Dec. 31, when they host Centenary (N.J.).
"We are very excited about this year's non-conference schedule which not only features games against some of the nation's leading basketball programs, but also provides us with some outstanding road contests against other mid-major programs," said Odom. "This challenging schedule provides our team with an opportunity to compete against the very best in the nation while also preparing us for an always difficult America East Conference regular season."
The Retrievers open their 15th season of America East Conference play when they welcome New Hampshire on Wednesday, Jan. 3. UMBC faced UNH three times last season, including the regular season finale and America East quarterfinal games, both in Durham. The Retrievers won a double-overtime thriller, 105-103, over the Wildcats at the RAC Arena in late January.
UMBC then embarks on a three-game road swing to Vermont (Jan. 6), Maine (Jan. 10) and UMass Lowell (Jan. 13) before returning home for a Martin Luther King, Jr. Day match-up with Hartford on Monday., Jan. 15.
A return visit by Vermont on Saturday., Feb. 3 and a late three-game home stand highlight the month of February for the Retrievers. The squad hosts Albany on Sunday, Feb. 18, Stony Brook on Wednesday., Feb. 21 and UML on Saturday., Feb. 24 in a seven-day span before concluding the regular season at Hartford on Feb. 28.
The America East Conference should be a very challenging conference again this season," Odom said. "Many teams return key players and are more experienced. We look forward to competing again in this great conference and look forward to some outstanding basketball during the conference season!"
The regular-season slates will decide the seeding and matchups for the America East Championships. After posting strong attendance numbers amongst peer conferences again last year, the America East Men's Basketball Playoffs will be played at campus sites throughout for the fourth-straight year. The top eight teams in the regular-season standings will qualify and play quarterfinal contests on March 3. The semifinals will take place on March 6 with the championship game on March 10 at 11 a.m. on ESPN2
All Retriever home games and all America East games will be broadcast on ESPN3. Game times will be announced at a later date.
Fri. 10 at SMU
Sun. 12 at Arizona
Thu. 16 Central Penn College
Sun. 19 at Colgate
Thu. 23 Chicago State (Battle for Atlantis Mainland)
Fri. 24 Nicholls State/Presbyterian (Battle for Atlantis Mainland)
Mon. 27 Shenandoah
Fri. 1 vs. Army-West Point (at Citadel Tournament)
Sat. 2 at Citadel/vs. Marist (Citadel Tournament)
Wed. 6 at Delaware State
Sat. 9 at Towson
Tue. 12 Coppin State
Sun. 17 Northern Kentucky
Fri. 29 at Maryland
Sun. 31 Centenary (N.J.)
Wed. 3 New Hampshire*
Sat. 6 at Vermont*
Wed. 10 at Maine*
Sat. 13 at UMass Lowell*
Mon. 15 Hartford*
Sun. 21 at Albany*
Wed. 24 Binghamton*
Sat. 27 Maine*
Wed. 31 at Stony Brook*
Sat. 3 Vermont*
Thu. 8 at Binghamton*
Sun. 11 at New Hampshire*
Sun. 18 Albany*
Wed. 21 Stony Brook*
Sat. 24 UMass Lowell*
Tue. 27 at Hartford*
Sat. 3 America East Quarterfinals at higher seeds
Tue. 6 America East Semifinals at higher seeds
Sat. 10 America East Championship Game at higher seed (ESPN2)
*America East contests (ESPN3)