Six of 11 non-conference games will be played in Viejas Arena and five opponents played in the postseason last year.
Photo courtesy goaztecs.com
September 16, 2021 (San Diego) - Having posted an 18-1 record in non-conference contests in the past two seasons, San Diego State men’s basketball program revealed its 2021-22 non-conference schedule on Thursday morning. The slate has a total of 11 games, which includes five teams that participated in the postseason last year. Four competed in the NCAA Tournament and one participated in the NIT.
The season opens on Tuesday, Nov. 9 against UC Riverside in Viejas Arena. These teams have met 11 times since the series commenced in the 1966-67 season, and the Aztecs have yet to drop a game to the Highlanders. In the four meetings in Viejas Arena, San Diego State’s average margin of victory has been 23.5 points. A year ago, UC Riverside went 14-8, 8-4 in the Big West and reached the semifinal game of its conference tournament.
The Aztecs head to Provo, Utah for a Friday, Nov. 12 meeting with Brigham Young in the Marriott Center. San Diego State won its last game in the facility, a 76-71 victory on Nov. 9, 2019. It was just the fourth win for the Aztecs in 33 games on the Cougars home floor and its first since Jan. 8, 2005, a span of 5,418 days. In the all-time series Brigham Young leads by a 49-25 mark.
San Diego State then returns home games against Arizona State and UT Arlington. The Sun Devils will be in Viejas Arena on Thursday, Nov. 18, followed by the Mavericks on Saturday, Nov. 20.
The game against Arizona State will be the 30th in a series in which SDSU holds an 19-10 lead, including last year’s 80-68 win in Tempe, when the Sun Devils were ranked No. 23 in the polls. In games played on the Aztecs home floor, SDSU is 8-6 against Arizona State. The last two meetings in San Diego have resulted in a pair of ASU wins; 59-52 in the 2008-09 season and 74-63 in the 2016-17 campaign.
San Diego State and UT Arlington, a member of the Sun Belt Conference, have never played. Last season the Mavericks were 13-13 and as the No. 3 seed in its conference tournament lost its opening round game.
On Thursday and Friday, Nov. 25 and 26, the Aztecs compete in the Paycom Wooden Legacy in Anaheim, Calif. The event opens with a meeting against Georgetown at 8:30 p.m. PT on Thursday and the game broadcast on ESPN2. In its only previous meeting, at Georgetown in the 1981-82 season, the Hoyas came away with a 71-53 victory, and current Georgetown head coach Patrick Ewing was a freshman on that squad.
Depending on the outcome of the Georgetown game, the Aztecs will play either Southern California or Saint Joseph’s on Friday. The Trojans have defeated the Aztecs in ten of the 13 matchups, but in the last two meetings, in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons, San Diego State was the victor. The Aztecs have never faced Saint Joseph’s. The Hawks went 5-15 last year, including 2-9 in Atlantic 10 Conference action and reached the second round of its conference tournament.
San Diego State returns home to play Long Beach State on Tuesday, Nov. 30. The programs have a 60-game history dating back to the 1953-54 season. The Aztecs are 38-22 against the Beach and have won 14 of the last 15 matchups dating back to the 1980-81 season. In games played in San Diego, the Aztecs hold a 20-10 advantage.
The team then heads to Ann Arbor, Mich., for head coach Brian Dutcher’s return to Michigan to lead the Aztecs against the team he helped guide to the 1989 NCAA Championship. The game, on Saturday, Dec. 4, will be the first meeting between the programs. Michigan, which finished 23-5 last season and reached the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament, was ranked in the top-4 in the nation for eight weeks last year.
Cal State Fullerton comes to Viejas Arena on Wednesday, Dec. 8 for its 32nd meeting with the Aztecs. San Diego State is 12-4 on its home floor against the Titans and has a 21-10 advantage in the all-time series. The last meeting, on Dec. 9, 2009, in Viejas, resulted in an 82-68 victory for SDSU.
Following an eight-day break for finals, the Aztecs return to action on Friday, Dec. 17 to play the Saint Mary’s College Gaels. The game will be played in the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Ariz., the home of the Phoenix Suns. The teams played last year in San Luis Obispo, Calif., where the Aztecs hammered the Gaels 74-49. Overall, San Diego State is 6-5 against the Gaels all-time, but 1-2 in meetings on a neutral court.
The non-conference slate is scheduled to wrap up in Viejas Arena. On Wednesday, Dec. 22, UC San Diego comes to The Mesa for the 12th meeting in the series, which SDSU leads 11-0. With UCSD in the midst of its transition to a Division I institution, this will be the first matchup between the Aztecs and Tritons as DI opponents. Last season, in its first as a member of the Big West the Tritons posted a 7-10 record, including a 4-8 mark in league games.
San Diego State has one more game which it can add to its schedule. That date and opponent will be announced in the future.
San Diego State Men’s Basketball
2021-22 Non-Conference Schedule
Nov. 9 UC RIVERSIDE
Nov. 12 at Brigham Young
Nov. 18 ARIZONA STATE
Nov. 20 UT ARLINGTON
Nov. 25 #vs. Georgetown
Nov. 26 #vs. Southern California/Saint Joseph’s
Nov. 30 LONG BEACH STATE
Dec. 4 at Michigan
Dec. 8 CAL STATE FULLERTON
Dec. 17 ^vs. Saint Mary’s
Dec. 22 UC SAN DIEGO
# - Paycom Wooden Legacy (Anaheim, Calif.)
^ - Footprint Center (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Home games in all CAPS