LOGAN, Utah – Utah State head men’s basketball coach Tim Duryea announced the complete 2016-17 schedule on Wednesday, including 16 games in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Additionally, the 2016-17 campaign features nine teams that appeared in various postseason tournaments last season and five first-time opponents.
The Aggies will host a lone exhibition on Friday, Nov. 4, facing Southern Virginia at home, before opening the 2016-17 campaign on the road at UC Irvine on Friday, Nov. 11. The game will mark the second consecutive year that USU has opened on the road, but lead the overall series with the Anteaters, 31-28.
Utah State returns to Logan for a pair of games as part of the Cancun Challenge, facing opponents from the Mayan Division in NJIT on Monday, Nov. 14, and Idaho State on Saturday, Nov. 19. Competition in the Cancun Challenge continues in Mexico the very next week, when the Aggies face Purdue on Tuesday, Nov. 22, followed by a matchup with either Texas Tech or Auburn on Wednesday, Nov. 23. The Cancun Challenge marks the first time in nine years that the Aggies have competed in a tournament not hosted in Logan.
USU then plays a third consecutive neutral court game when the Aggies play BYU at Vivint Smart Homes Arena in Salt Lake City, on Wednesday, Nov. 30.
Utah State returns home and opens the month of December, hosting Indiana State on Saturday, Dec. 3, as part of the Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge. The Aggies were one of six Mountain West schools that captured victories in the 2015-16 installment of the MW/MVC Challenge, posting a 69-68 win on the road at Missouri State.
The Aggies face their second in-state opponent at Utah Valley on Saturday, Dec. 10, and will enter the game having won all 11 meetings between the two schools.
Utah State then opens a four-game homestand, hosting Great Falls, an NAIA school from Great Falls, Mont., on Saturday, Dec. 17, followed by a first-ever meeting with New Orleans on Monday, Dec. 19. The Aggies close out their in-state opponents with Weber State on Wednesday, Dec. 21, before beginning their 2016-17 Mountain West slate on Dec. 28, hosting Boise State and marking the first time in three years that the Aggies have began their MW schedule with an opponent other than San José State.
The game also marks the second year in a row that the Aggies will play the Broncos during the winter break and will be the first of three homes games during the stretch before the 2017 spring semester starts. The homestand also includes games against New Mexico on Wednesday, Jan. 4 and UNLV on Saturday, Jan. 7.
“As always the Mountain West schedule will be very challenging, no matter what order you play the games,” head coach Tim Duryea said. “I feel bad for our students and our players that we have three conference home games before our students are back in class for the spring semester. However, we are looking forward to a very competitive, wide open league, similar to last year, with a lot of quality teams from top to bottom.”
Utah State will also have its first conference road game during the same stretch, celebrating New Year’s in Colorado Springs with a New Year’s Eve game at Air Force on Saturday, Dec. 31. The road games continue, following the home games against New Mexico and UNLV, with contests at Wyoming on Wednesday, Jan. 11 and at San Diego State on Saturday, Jan. 14.
The Aggies will have their first bye and then will host Colorado State on Saturday, Jan. 21 before returning to the road for the second contest of the season against New Mexico on Wednesday, Jan. 25. Utah State then hosts its lone contest against Fresno State on Saturday, Jan. 28 and will open the month of February with a home game against Nevada on Wednesday, Feb. 1.
Utah State returns to the road for a pair of games at Boise State on Saturday, Feb. 4 and at Colorado State on Wednesday, Feb. 8, before hosting back-to-back home games against Wyoming on Saturday, Feb. 11 and San Diego State on Wednesday, Feb. 15.
The Aggies will then play three of their final four games of the season on the road with contests at Nevada on Saturday, Feb. 18, the only matchup against San José State on Saturday, Feb. 25 and the regular season finale at UNLV on Wednesday, March 1. Utah State will play its final home game on Saturday, Feb. 25, hosting Air Force on Senior Night.
All dates are subject to change with television games yet to be determined. Mountain West national television partners CBS Sports Network and ESPN will initiate a selection procedure which will include the shifting of Wednesday games to Tuesday and Saturday games to Sunday. Regional partner ROOT SPORTS and the Mountain West Network on Campus Insiders will begin their picks after the national television lineup has been announced.
Utah State will be entering its fourth year in the Mountain West, compiling an overall mark of 25-29 over that span. The record includes a 2-1 mark in league openers and a 15-12 mark inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
The Aggies will return three starters and four letterwinners from last season in senior wing Jalen Moore, senior guard Shane Rector, junior guard Julion Pearre and sophomore forward Quinn Taylor, and will also return a redshirt in sophomore forward Alexis Dargenton. The Utah State roster will be rounded out by 10 new additions in guards Koby McEwen (Wasatch Academy), Sam Merrill (Bountiful HS), returning from an LDS Church Mission in Nicaragua, and Diogo Brito (Mountain Mission HS (Va.)), who spent the summer playing with the Portugese National Team in European competition. The guard corps will be complimented by four post players, all 6-foot-8 or taller, in Norbert Janicek (Snow College), Klay Stall (Basha HS (Ariz.)), Daron Henson (Cathedral HS (Calif.)) and Ngor Barnaba (Missouri State-West Plains). USU’s bench will be supplemented by senior guard Connor Garner (Declo HS (Idaho)), and freshmen walk-ons Able Porter (Davis HS) and Trevin Dorius (Wasatch HS).
Utah State men’s basketball new and information is available on Facebook (facebook.com/usumen’sbasketball) and on Twitter (@Aggiehoops). Fans can also get USU men’s basketball highlights on YouTube (youtube.com/utahstateathletics). Aggie fans can follow the Utah State athletic program on Twitter (@usuathletics), on Facebook (facebook.com/usuathletics) or on Instagram (@usuathletics).
2016-17 Utah State Men’s Basketball Schedule
<strong>Nov. 4 Southern Virginia</strong>
Nov. 11 at UC Irvine
<strong>Nov. 14 NJIT #</strong>
<strong>Nov. 19 Idaho State #</strong>
Nov. 22 vs. Purdue #
Nov. 23 vs. Texas Tech/Auburn #
Nov. 30 vs. BYU
<strong>Dec. 3 Indiana State ^</strong>
Dec. 10 at Utah Valley
<strong>Dec. 17 Great Falls</strong>
<strong>Dec. 19 New Orleans</strong>
<strong>Dec. 21 Weber State</strong>
<strong>Dec. 28 Boise State *</strong>
Dec. 31 at Air Force *
<strong>Jan. 4 New Mexico *</strong>
<strong>Jan. 7 UNLV *</strong>
Jan. 11 at Wyoming *
Jan. 14 at San Diego State *
<strong>Jan. 21 Colorado State *</strong>
Jan. 25 at New Mexico *
<strong>Jan. 28 Fresno State *</strong>
<strong>Feb. 1 Nevada *</strong>
Feb.4 at Boise State *
Feb. 8 at Colorado State *
<strong>Feb. 11 Wyoming *</strong>
<strong>Feb. 15 San Diego State *</strong>
Feb. 18 at Nevada *
Feb. 22 at San José State *
<strong>Feb. 25 Air Force *</strong>
March 1 at UNLV *
March 8-11 Mountain West Tournament
# – Denotes Cancun Challenge
^ – Denotes MW/MVC Challenge
* – Denotes Mountain West Conference game
Home games in bold
(All dates are subject to change)