At Least Two More

The Orange said goodbye to the Big East, but not to a familiar foe. More inside.

Though the Syracuse Orange have made their exit from the Big East Conference, that has not meant that they have closed the door on rivals within the former conference.

The Orange have already set up a home-and-home series with the St. John's Red Storm for the next two seasons.

Now Syracuse has mirrored that with the addition of a home-and-home series with the Villanova Wildcats for the upcoming two seasons. The first match-up will be held on December 28, 2013, in the Carrier Dome.

"The series with Villanova has been one of our most competitive, year in and year out," said Orange head basketball coach Jim Boeheim. "It really took off when Coach (Rollie) Massimino was in charge and has certainly continued with Coach (Jay) Wright at Villanova."

On the opposite end, Villanova head basketball coach Jay Wright shared, "Syracuse-Villanova games have been a great tradition and a big part of BIG EAST basketball. When the Wildcats and the Orange have met at the Carrier Dome and Wells Fargo Center, the environments have been two of the best in college basketball."

The Orange and the Wildcats faced off on the hard-court for the first time in the 1945-46 season.

They would go on to become Big East opponents in the second season, 1980-81, of the conference's existence and have been ever since.

"The Villanova rivalry has given us some of our best moments," stated Syracuse University Director of Athletics Dr. Daryl Gross. "It has traditionally been one of the top match-ups in college basketball and we look forward to continuing the series."

"We are excited to announce the continuation of the Villanova-Syracuse rivalry," offered Villanova University Director of Athletics Vince Nicastro. "Our annual games against Syracuse were an integral part of our basketball schedule over the past 30-plus years, and included some of the greatest college basketball experiences in the nation. We are thrilled to be able to continue that for the next two years."

In 70 matches with one another, the Orange have done their best to de-claw the Wildcats, holding a 38-32 edge.

Most recently, Syracuse and Villanova split their home-and-home series in the 2012-13 season.

Syracuse University Athletics contributed to this report.

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