North Texas Men’s Basketball Announces Non-Conference Schedule
Mean Green To Face Six Postseason Teams In 2015-16 Season
DENTON – North Texas head coach Tony Benford released the non-conference portion of the 2015-16 men's basketball schedule that features a home thanksgiving tournament and road games against Northern Iowa and Creighton.
“We are very excited about the upcoming season,” head coach Tony Benford said. “We will play a very solid non-conference schedule that will prepare us for conference play. We are fortunate to host a multi-tournament event (The Mean Green Challenge) that will allow us to play four home games versus Texas College, Idaho, Samford and Troy.”
The Mean Green Challenge will feature Big Sky opponent Idaho, Troy out of the Sun Belt and Samford from the Southern Conference Nov. 23-25 at the Super Pit.
North Texas will face some stiff competition against six postseason teams from 2014-15, including two that went to the NCAA tournament in Northern Iowa and UAB. The Mean Green will head to Cedar Falls, IA for the first meeting between the two teams on November 30. The Panthers were a stellar 31-4 last season, including a perfect 15-0 home record. Northern Iowa defeated Wyoming in the NCAA tournament before falling to fourth-seeded Louisville in the third round.
“We will also play at Northern Iowa who won the Missouri Valley Conference last season and play a home and home series with another MVC foe Southern Illinois,” Benford said. “Additionally, we will play at UT-Arlington and have a return trip to Creighton out of the Big East.”
NT has scheduled a home and home with Missouri Valley foe Southern Illinois on December 5 at the Super Pit before heading to Carbondale, IL seven days later.
North Texas makes a return trip to Omaha to face Creighton (Dec. 21), who had 27 wins just two seasons ago. The all-time series between the two teams is even at five games apiece but the Mean Green is a perfect 3-0 against the Bluejays in Denton after last year’s 62-58 victory. The last time the two teams met in Omaha, No. 16-ranked Creighton earned a 71-51 win to open the 2012-13 season.
Entering his fourth season at North Texas, Benford has scheduled 37 teams that earned postseason trips the previous year. Other postseason participants on the Mean Green schedule include LA Tech (NIT), Middle Tennessee (CIT), Northern Iowa (NCAA), Old Dominion (NIT), UAB (NCAA) and UTEP (NIT).
North Texas will open the season against Jarvis Christian Nov. 13 at the Super Pit that starts a five-game home stand for the Mean Green.
“Along with our home conference schedule that will feature games against Western Kentucky, Old Dominion, Louisiana Tech and Southern Miss, our fans will have the opportunity to see many quality games at the Super Pit this year,” Benford added.
The Mean Green will also host Texas College on Nov. 16, Nicholls State (Dec. 14) and Mississippi Valley State (DISD Day, Dec. 17) in non-conference play.