49ers Announce Another Tough Basketball Schedule for 2012-13Published: July 17, 2012
CSULB men’s basketball coach Dan Monson has announced the 49ers’ schedule for the 2012-13 season, and for the fourth straight year it will feature one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country.
The highlight of the schedule is a home game against perennial national power North Carolina on Nov. 16 in the Walter Pyramid. The 49ers and the Tar Heels will meet for the third straight season, but for the first time ever in Long Beach. The game will be CSULB’s first ever men’s home basketball game against a team from the Atlantic Coast Conference.
CSULB will face three of last year’s top six teams in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ Poll as well as three schools from the Pac-12 Conference. In addition to playing North Carolina, ranked No. 6 in the final poll last season, the 49ers visit Syracuse (No. 5 last year) on Dec. 6 and Ohio State (No. 3 last season) on Dec. 8.
“We are excited again this year, as we have done in the past several seasons, to announce arguably the toughest preseason schedule in the nation,” Monson said. “The schedule is highlighted, of course, by the opportunity to host the North Carolina Tar Heels at the Pyramid, one of the premier programs in the country. This schedule should give us a great opportunity to grow as a team and improve throughout the preseason in hopes of being ready to defend our Big West championship.”
Long Beach State begins its Pac-12 adventure with a game at USC on Nov. 13, before traveling to Arizona on Nov. 19 and UCLA on Dec. 18. Arizona, USC and UCLA each qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 2011, with Arizona advancing to the Elite Eight.
The 49ers’ schedule has five non-conference home games. Along with North Carolina game, CSULB will host Fresno State of the Mountain West Conference on Dec. 3, while also hosting an ESPN BracketBuster game in February. BracketBuster opponents are announced at a later date.
CSULB will open its season on Nov. 10 at the Walter Pyramid against North Alabama as part of Homecoming weekend. The 49ers then hit the road, playing four of their next five games away from Long Beach, with three of those five games against teams that qualified for one of the postseason tournaments last season.
CSULB begins the streak playing at USC before hosting North Carolina. After the Tar Heels come to town, LBSU plays the next three on the road against Arizona, Fresno State (Nov. 25) and Loyola Marymount (Nov. 29). The 49ers return home for the back end of the home-and-home series with Fresno State, but then hit the road for the Syracuse-Ohio State road trip. The 49ers wrap up their pre-conference season with a home game against BYU-Hawaii (Dec. 15) and the game at UCLA before opening Big West play against Pacific in the Walter Pyramid on Dec. 29.
Monson’s teams at Long Beach State have headed into the conference season the last three years with the top ranked non-conference schedule in the country. During his five seasons at the helm of the 49ers, his teams have played 30 teams that have advanced to the NCAA Tournament, including 26 non-conference foes. Of those 26, one won a national championship (Duke 2010), two played for the title (Duke and Kansas 2012), four qualified for the Final Four (Duke, Kansas, West Virginia (2010), and Louisville (2012), seven advanced to the Elite Eight and 10 made it to the Sweet 16. The 49ers played eight NCAA Tournament teams last season and in 2009-10, seven in 2010-11, five in 2008-09, and two in 2007-08.
Monson’s teams have squared off against Power 6 Conference teams 23 times in his five seasons. CSULB played seven teams from one of the six conferences in 2009-10, six teams in 2011-12, five teams in 2010-11, four teams in 2008-09 and two teams in 2007-08.