LSU basketball releases 2013-2014 schedule

Advocate staff photo by RICHARD ALAN HANNON -- LSU basketball coach Johnny Jones should have a more appealing SEC home schedule this season after the Tigers released their schedule Tuesday.
Advocate staff photo by RICHARD ALAN HANNON -- LSU basketball coach Johnny Jones should have a more appealing SEC home schedule this season after the Tigers released their schedule Tuesday.

By now, LSU basketball fans could have pieced together the bulk of the Tigers’ slate based on other program’s releasing their own schedules.

After sending its non-conference schedule into the Southeastern Conference’s home office twice for review, LSU released its 2013-2014 schedule on Tuesday, with its non-conference portion highlighted by playing in the Old Spice Classic and a road trip to Texas Tech.

Yet, the Tigers’ conference schedule is pockmarked with marquee home games, including a visit from Kentucky on Jan. 28 to Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

LSU opens up the season at 10 a.m. on Nov. 12 with a visit to Massachusetts that will be part of ESPN’s annual tip-off event. Next, they come home for three consecutive games against in-state foes in Northwestern State (Nov. 16), UNO (Nov. 19) and Southeastern Louisiana (Nov. 22) before traveling to the Old Spice Classic.

LSU opens up the tournament, based in Orlando, Fla., against St. Joseph at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 28 on ESPN 2, with a possible matchup looming against Memphis or Siena a day later. The program’s next home date is against ULM on Dec. 14 before traveling to Texas Tech in an 8 p.m. game on ESPNU.

LSU closes December with four straight home games with UAB (Dec. 21), McNeese State (Dec. 28) and Rhode Island (Jan. 4) before it opens up its SEC slate against at 6 p.m. Jan. 7 against Tennessee in a Super Tuesday game on ESPN.

A year ago, Florida was the only true top flight home game on LSU’s home SEC schedule, but that should change with the early portion of the Tigers conference docket this season. Four potential NCAA teams, starting with the Volunteers, come to Baton Rouge. After Vanderbilt arrives on Jan. 15, LSU gets Missouri on Jan. 21, followed up a week later from conference favorite Kentucky on Jan. 28.

The Tigers also host SEC foes in Arkansas (Feb. 1), Auburn (Feb. 8), Mississippi State (Feb. 19) and Texas A&M (Feb. 26) and Georgia (March 7) to close the season.

Yet, LSU also gets early road tests in January. They visit a potentially improved South Carolina on Jan. 11, followed by a road trip to an NCAA tournament team in Ole Miss on Jan. 15. Ten days later, LSU visits Alabama, setting off a 12-day break from the road before opening February with three of its first four games away from the PMAC with visits to Georgia (Feb. 6), Texas A&M (Feb. 12) and Arkansas (Feb. 15). If the Tigers are in the mix for a NCAA tournament berth, games at Kentucky (Feb. 22) and a nationally televised tilt on CBS with Florida (March 1) could be boost for their resume ahead of a March 6 visit to Vanderbilt.