July 11, 2012
QUEENS, N.Y. - Nineteen home dates, beginning with a second appearance in three years as a part of ESPN's College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon, highlight the 2012-13 St. John's men's basketball non-conference schedule. Home games for the SEC/BIG EAST Challenge, the Madison Square Garden Holiday Festival and the BROOKLYN HOOPS Winter Festival, and a trip to the DIRECTV Charleston Classic are also included in what will amount to an exciting season for the Red Storm on the hardwood.
In all, St. John's could play 19 regular season games against teams that participated in the postseason in 2011-12 (NCAA - Baylor, Cincinnati, Colorado, Connecticut, Detroit, Georgetown, Louisville, Murray State, Marquette, Notre Dame, Syracuse, UNC Asheville, USF; NIT - Dayton, Seton Hall; CBI - Pitt, San Francisco). The Red Storm headed into last season facing 17 such matchups.
"Our young team will face another challenging non-conference schedule," said head coach Steve Lavin. "In addition to the rigorous BIG EAST matchups, we will be facing a highly-competitive field down in Charleston, and playing host to tough foes at The Garden, at Carnesecca Arena and at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Our non-conference slate gives our fans in New York opportunities to come out and support the Johnnies in whatever backyard they call their own."
The BIG EAST Conference will release a complete composite schedule for its member schools, including opponents, dates, game times, and both national and regional television information, at a later date. For the second time since 1998, all 2012-13 home games will be produced live for national or regional broadcast platforms, some courtesy of the St. John's Television Network (STJ-TV).
Fans will get an early glance at Lavin's youth-filled Red Storm - featuring the nation's No. 8 recruiting class - with a pair of preseason exhibition contests. The first exhibition date, on Thursday, Nov. 1 vs. NCAA Division II squad Sonoma State, will pit Lavin against one of his own former coaches in Seawolves' bench boss Pat Fuscaldo. Fuscaldo was a graduate assistant coach at San Francisco State when Lavin was a basketball student-athlete for the Gators during 1982-83 and 1983-84 seasons.
St. John's welcomes the NCAA Division III Concordia Cougars, from Chicago, Ill., and head coach Tyler Jones to Carnesecca Arena on Tuesday, Nov. 6. Jones, a prostate cancer survivor who has told his story on ESPN's "Outside the Lines," has credited Lavin's April 2011 announcement about his battle with the disease as the impetus behind Jones' own diagnosis and successful treatment.
The Red Storm regular season begins as part of ESPN's fifth-annual College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon on Tuesday, Nov. 13. St. John's will meet Detroit at 2 p.m. at Carnesecca Arena on ESPN with a chance to avenge a loss from last season's Dick Vitale Court Dedication game in the Motor City. The matchup is the eighth contest slated as part of the marathon that features 11 live college basketball games in 24 consecutive hours on the primary broadcast network of the "Worldwide Leader in Sports."
The 2012 DIRECTV Charleston Classic Presented by Foster Grant will be held Thursday, Friday and Sunday, Nov. 15, 16 & 18, at TD Arena in Charleston, S.C. Matchups will be announced at a later time from a field comprised of St. John's, Auburn, Baylor, Boston College, Charleston, Colorado, Dayton and Murray State. Each team will compete in one game per day, advancing through a bracket-tournament format. The two teams that remain undefeated throughout will face off in a championship match.
"Three games in four days at the Charleston Classic in November will allow us to learn more about the makeup of our team. Baylor returns an outstanding squad from its Elite Eight run last season, Colorado was a NCAA Tournament participant, Murray State is coming off its best season in history and Auburn participated in the 2012 NIT. The Charleston Classic field looks to be as strong as any 2012 early-season tournament and will prove to be a valuable experience for our young squad," said Lavin.
Following non-conference tilts in Queens with Holy Cross (Nov. 21) and Florida Gulf Coast (Nov. 24), Lavin and his Red Storm will play host to new South Carolina head coach Frank Martin and the Gamecocks on Thursday, Nov. 29, as part of the second-annual SEC/BIG EAST Challenge. Tip time will be announced at a later date for the matchup at Carnesecca Arena that will be televised nationally on ESPN2 or ESPNU.
"Our fans will enjoy this intersectional matchup against the Gamecocks at Carnesecca in late November. Frank Martin will have his South Carolina team ready to compete when they come to Queens," said Lavin. "With national television and the fired-up Gamecocks coming to town, Johnnies will get a good early test to see where we are as a team."
After opening December with a Carnesecca Arena matchup vs. local squad NJIT, the Red Storm heads to San Francisco for a Dec. 4 clash with the Dons at War Memorial Gym. Lavin's father, Cap Lavin, was a standout at San Francisco from 1949-52 under two Naismith Hall of Fame coaches, Pete Newell and Phil Woolpert. Cap Lavin is a member of the Dons Hall of Fame.
The Red Storm makes its debut at the newly-renovated "World's Most Famous Arena" on Saturday, Dec. 8, as the Madison Square Garden Holiday Festival again takes the form of a one-day doubleheader featuring local squads. A matchup that will be announced later tips things off early in the day, followed for a second-straight year by St. John's and Fordham in the nightcap.
The Red Storm will meet longtime interborough rival St. Francis of Brooklyn in the BROOKLYN HOOPS Winter Festival at the new Barclays Center on Saturday, December 15. St. John's will take on the Terriers as part of a tripleheader, which will also feature Michigan vs. West Virginia and Fordham vs. Princeton.
"To play a local school like St. Francis at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn is a natural fit," said Lavin. "Some of St. John's most-prolific players and loyal fans throughout our storied history have roots that trace back to the borough of Brooklyn. This game and new venue presents a nice way to pay homage to that dimension of our legacy."
St. John's squares off with UNC Asheville - a squad that nearly became the first No. 16 seed to upset a No. 1 when the Bulldogs challenged Syracuse in the 2012 NCAA Second Round - on Friday, Dec. 21 in an on-campus pre-Christmas tilt. Carnesecca Arena will once again pay tribute to Hall of Fame Coach Lou Carnesecca and ring in festive spirit of the season with a new favorite tradition: "the Ugly Holiday Sweater game."
In 2012-13, the BIG EAST will once again play an 18-game conference schedule, but this season teams face 10 opponents once and four teams twice. It will mark the sixth year of the 18-game schedule, which began for the 2007-08 season. The decisions regarding repeat opponents are driven by fairness and competitive balance within the parameters of television selections and geographic rivalries.
St. John's will take part in home-and-home series with Georgetown, Notre Dame, Rutgers and DePaul during the upcoming season, and will meet the remaining BIG EAST league opponents once either at home or on the road. In addition to the Hoyas, Fighting Irish, Scarlet Knights and Blue Demons, St. John's plays a host of marquee home matchups against conference opponents. Connecticut, Marquette, Pitt, Seton Hall and USF all travel to New York City for matchups on one of St. John's home courts, either at Carnesecca Arena, or on the newly-renovated grand stage at Madison Square Garden. The Red Storm will hit the road to face Louisville, Syracuse, Cincinnati, Providence and Villanova in addition to Georgetown, Notre Dame, Rutgers and DePaul.
The 16-team BIG EAST Championship Tournament takes place at the World's Most Famous Arena from Tuesday, March 12, to Saturday, March 16.
St. John's fans can request 2012-13 season ticket information, which will be available later this summer, by clicking here. Fans can join the Red White Club by visiting RedStormSports.com and clicking on the link to "Giving" to visit the Red White website.