The Rutgers men’s basketball team has officially received its Big Ten schedule for the 2020-21 season. With a 20-game conference schedule, the Scarlet Knights will begin conference play on Dec. 14 at Maryland.
Head basketball coach Steve Pikiell expects Rutgers to start its season with a non-conference game on Nov. 25. The University will reveal the non-conference schedule at a later date.
The Knights will hold their first home game on Dec. 20 when Illinois comes to the Rutgers Athletic Center (RAC). The current schedule allows for Rutgers to play five non-conference games plus a two-game, multi-team event on top of their 20-game conference schedule.
The Knights have one non-conference game set up with Syracuse on Dec. 8, as part of the 22nd annual Big Ten/Atlantic Coast Conference Challenge. Rutgers is also confirmed to be hosting Fairleigh-Dickinson on Nov. 27 and Rider on Nov. 28, as part of the New Jersey Hoop Group Classic.
The annual meeting with state rival Seton Hall is up in the air as the Pirates have almost completely filled their non-conference spots. Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard said a meeting during a bye week for both teams in January or February in a neutral location could be a possible solution, according to NJ Advance Media.
Knights senior guard Geo Baker said the team is simply focused on “us.”
“There’s been enough talk about that game," said Baker, according to NJ Advance Media. "This is my fourth year here, I love it, I would love to play that game, but at the end of the day, if it’s not on the schedule, that’s alright with us. We’re not worried about them, we’re worried about our own team.”
The Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament is set to be played March 10-14 at the United Center in Chicago. Teams are still awaiting TV network information and start times. In response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), all Big Ten men’s basketball teams will follow the same medical protocols that are currently in place for football teams.
These protocols include daily antigen testing, enhanced cardiac screening and an enhanced data-driven approach when making practice/competition decisions.
With a recruiting class that Pikiell referred to as “by far our best recruiting class,” according to NJ Advance Media, and the return of seven of its top players, Rutgers has been ranked 24th in the preseason rankings by the Associated Press.
Here is the complete Big Ten schedule of the Knights:
Monday, Dec. 14: Rutgers at Maryland
Sunday, Dec. 20: Illinois at Rutgers
Wednesday, Dec. 23: Rutgers at Ohio State
Tuesday, Dec. 29: Purdue at Rutgers
Saturday, Jan. 2: Iowa at Rutgers
Tuesday, Jan. 5: Rutgers at Michigan State
Saturday, Jan. 9: Ohio State at Rutgers
Tuesday, Jan. 12: Rutgers at Penn State
Friday, Jan. 15: Wisconsin at Rutgers
Sunday, Jan. 24: Rutgers at Indiana
Thursday, Jan. 28: Michigan State at Rutgers
Sunday, Jan. 31: Rutgers at Northwestern
Thursday, Feb. 4: Minnesota at Rutgers
Wednesday, Feb. 10: Rutgers at Iowa
Saturday, Feb. 13: Northwestern at Rutgers
Thursday, Feb. 18: Rutgers at Michigan
Sunday, Feb. 21: Maryland at Rutgers
Wednesday, Feb. 24: Indiana at Rutgers
Sunday, Feb. 28: Rutgers at Nebraska
Saturday, March 6, or Sunday, March 7: Rutgers at Minnesota
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