USF BE Opponents Released; 2 Incoming Honored

The Big East Conference has announced league opponents and game sites for the 2009-10 season, so the USF men's basketball team has an idea about its upcoming schedule with Cincinnati, Notre Dame and Providence as the only opponents the Bulls will play at home and on the road. Also two incoming freshmen hoopsters were named All-state.

The Big East Conference has announced league opponents and game sites for the 2009-10 season, so the USF men's basketball team has an idea about its upcoming schedule with Cincinnati, Notre Dame and Providence as the only opponents the Bulls will play at home and on the road.

The South Florida Bulls play an 18-game Big East schedule this year with games against each Conference opponent at least once this season, to go along with the three repeat opponents. Additionally, all 144 regular-season Big East games will be televised by CBS Sports, the ESPN networks or ESPN Regional Television.

Decisions regarding opponents are based on natural interest, geography, rivalries, television contractual obligations and competitive balance.

USF will play nine home games and nine away contests during Big East regular-season competition. Home opponents at the USF Sun Dome include Cincinnati, Connecticut, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, Providence, Rutgers, St. John's, Seton Hall, West Virginia.

At home the Bulls will host a pair of No. 1 seeds from the 2009 NCAA Championship in Connecticut and Pittsburgh, as well as West Virginia, who made the field of 64 as a No. 6 seed.

The Bull's' 2009-10 road opponents include Cincinnati, DePaul, Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame, Providence, Syracuse, Villanova. Again, the three repeat opponents are Cincinnati, Notre Dame and Providence.

The Big East Tournament is scheduled for March 9-13 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Under its new format that began last season, all 16 Conference teams will earn a berth there. The tournament will begin with four games Tuesday, March 9, featuring seeds 9 through 16. Wednesday, March 10 games feature the winners of the lower seeds against seeds 5 through 8.

Seeds 1 through 4 will earn a two-day bye and won't play until the quarterfinals Thursday, March 11. The semifinals are Friday, March 12, and the championship game is scheduled for Saturday, March 13.

NCAA Tournament first- and second-round games are March 18-21, 2009. Sites for those games include: New Orleans, La.; Providence, R.I.; San Jose, Calif.; Spokane, Wash.; Buffalo, N.Y.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Milwaukee, Wis.; and Oklahoma City, Okla.

The NCAA Regional's will be played from March 25-28 with four regional sites in Syracuse, N.Y.; Salt Lake City, Utah; St. Louis, Mo.; and Houston, Texas. The 2010 Final Four will be played April 3-5 at Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Field.

In non-conference play, USF is scheduled to participate in the 2009 Charleston Classic, to be held Nov. 19-22, at Carolina First Arena in Charleston, S.C. The field for the second annual Charleston Classic will include USF, La Salle, Miami (Fla.), UNC Wilmington, Penn State, South Carolina and Tulane. Three of the teams in the field played in the 2008-09 NIT, including NIT champion Penn State, Miami and South Carolina.

USF's remaining non-conference opponents will be released at a later date. Dates and times will be released on USF's schedule when finalized in September.

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More Hoops: The Bulls 2009 freshmen class just reported to campus last week and two of the newcomers were just recognized by Florida sports writers and coaches as All-State performers. Forward Toarlyn Fitzpatrick was voted Class 5A first-team all-state, and guard Shaun Noriega earned Class 5A third-team all-state.

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