Seton Hall adds Louisville to non-conference schedule

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Seton Hall has added a road game at Louisville to an increasingly impressive 2017-18 non-conference schedule.

According to Jerry Carino of the Asbury Park Press, the Hall will travel to Kentucky to take on Kevin Willard’s mentor Rick Pitino and a Louisville team that is getting picked in the top-five of nearly every “too early” pre-season top-25 ranking.

The game will precede the Cardinals’ return trip to Prudential Center during the 2018-19 season.

An undeniably juicy home-and-home deal, Seton Hall will likely be up against a buzz-saw Louisville bunch next season that will be a win-win situation: it won’t hurt RPI and could be a monumental resume-booster.

Elsewhere on Seton Hall’s non-conference lineup, the staff has unofficially inked a home-and-home with VCU that starts in Newark this coming season while six total games from the NIT Preseason Tip-off, Gavitt Games, and the Under Armour Reunion fill up over half the schedule and provide a combination of home and semi-home (Madison Square Garden) games.

Another hosting of Fairleigh Dickinson and a Saturday tip against Rutgers at the RAC also feature on Seton Hall’s schedule, which is nearing completion.

It’s too early to tell now, but as always, I will provide my take on the overall schedule’s strength and how it ranks against previous Willard lineups.

2017-18 Non-Conference Schedule

Fairleigh Dickinson
Gavitt Games (home; 11/13)
NIT Preseason Tip-Off Campus game #1
NIT Preseason Tip-Off Campus game #2
Rhode Island/Vanderbilt/Virginia (11/23)
Rhode Island/Vanderbilt/Virginia (11/24)
@ Louisville (early Dec.)
Under Armour Reunion (TBA)
@ Rutgers (12/16)

  • LBP

    Great -and I mean great- choice. No lose for Hall

  • Andrew Herbst

    This is good news. Happy that we are making our non-conference schedule tougher.

  • Matty P

    Great to see that Willard used his connections to get a good game added to the schedule. Would be great if he could continue to use some of his other connections to continue to put together a strong out of conference schedule each year.

  • Joe Schmoe

    If there is a year to do it, its this year. Senior class, all the experience in the world. No excuses. Is Duval still uncommitted? I haven’t seen anything official?

    • yes still uncommitted. The longer no decision the better, but i still think this one has been over for days

      • Joe Schmoe

        I mean if he was really on duke campus filming a “commitment video”…why continue to hold out for so long? Any word on what Angel is up to?

  • VinBick

    It is the only way to build the program. Playing Delaware and other cupcakes early does not help build national recognition or put butts in the seats. With a viable point guard added, the Hall should be a competitive team against all of the big boys from coast to coast. The Rock is a perfect venue for the Louisvilles and other top teams during their out of conference schedule. The fanbase is hungry for first class college basketball all season long.

    • So far, no cupcakes, tho FDU and the two on-campus NIT games are variables.

      • VinBick

        Three or four local schools should always be included in the non-conference schedule as they are natural rivals. Home and home games with Princeton and Monmouth should be no-brainers. Both have really nice on campus gyms which are much nicer than the RAC at RU. By the way, with the large fan attendance and the competitive rivalry, the Hall vs Rutgers game should be held each year at the Rock.

        • why would Rutgers agree to an annual away game at a rival?

          • VinBick

            Why couldn’t the two rivals alternate being the home team at the Rock? Splitting the gate receipts evenly every year does not seem to be too challenging a task. Come on, Chris. The Rock every year vs. having this big event every other year in that dump called the RAC hidden away in Piscataway?

          • would be unorthodox for 2 schools to alternate playing at one school’s home venue. what are the optics of playing in front of an “away” rutgers crowd in your own home building?

            plus, rutgers would not want to give up the RAC — which can be hostile — for playing at the Rock

            maybe this would make sense in a venue *like* the meadowlands

        • Joe Schmoe

          Or….Rutgers needs to pony up the $$$ and put a Big10 worthy arena right on campus.

  • fouline

    If you want to be considered a big boy you have to play with the big boys. St. Johns has been doing this for years. It’s about time the program showed the fans some confidence in its own team.

    • RonD

      Agree, but it’s the first time in a decade where the program has been at the level where it can compete with the big boys.

      • fouline

        True… but sometimes you have to force the issue and do something for the fans. SJU played Duke, UCLA etc. over the last few years and the Garden was rocking even though they lost most of those games.

        • RonD

          But the Johnies had competitive teams. Lavin had 3 NCAA teams in the 5 years he was there. We are competitive now and should be scheduling these teams. But I still think not too many teams at Louisville’s level are coming to Newark. Good job by all involved.

          • VinBick

            Ron, quality teams should be coming to the Rock in Newark most willingly. It is an outstanding venue and the Hall is an attractive opponent for any top 25 program.

          • RonD

            Vin, I would hope that other top program’s would come to Newark, but will they? The pattern seems to be that top programs from the ACC, SEC etc prefer to play one off games in NYC at the more prestigious venues of MSG and Barclays. (For example, the UA event in MSG.)
            I think Wiilard leveaged his relationship with Pitino well to get Louisville on the schedule but more importantly to get them to come to Newark and give us a return home game. How many top 10-15 teams are going to want to come into Newark and play a tough SHU team. Not many, nor do they have to in order to get exposure in the Northeast.

          • VinBick

            Ron, there is equal New York-New Jersey-CT. exposure for teams playing at the two NYC venues that you list and the Rock. Programs that are perennially strong want their players and potential recruits to see them perform in our market. We do not scare the big boys, yet.

            With the exception of Nova, the Big East teams are not seen as belonging in their “elite conferences”. We are still at the mid-major level in the eyes of many around the country. Most of us die-hard Big East fans do not buy into that notion, but perception is the reality.

          • LBP

            Remember RonD that ESPN will never support the Big East -so we can forget the ACC unless we get some Mavericks

          • RonD

            Well, we did get Louisville! But I stick to my original point, blue blood programs will go to MSG and Barclays before they come to Newark.

  • Of note in Jerry’s story is that Saint Peter’s will again be off the slate. Hopefully that’s get rescheduled sometime soon.

    Any other local schools (besides Princeton & Monmouth) you would like to see scheduled more often?

    • LBP

      Gotta have St Peters-just too much traditin

  • For those that missed it, appears that 2017 PG Jamari Wheeler has taken an official. Was on campus Monday. Never reported and was apparently between a Penn State visit this past weekend and Auburn next.

    • He tweeted that he won’t be visiting Auburn this weekend… Hmmmm

      • hallstorm

        Is Wheeler better than Walker? Consensus recruiting sites do not think so. I’m a little nervous on taking on 4 years of a point guard who isn’t on any recruiting sites. Can he really start with the 4 seniors next year?

        • Matty P

          I saw that Wheeler was included on ESPN as a 3 star recruit. Mentioned he has a tight dribble and is a good athlete, but needs to add strength and continue to develop as a shooter. Overall it sounds like he’s got the ability to be a good player, but might fit as more of a role player his freshman year instead of being a starter. I certainly wouldn’t mind bringing him in and allowing him to develop more while bringing in a transfer PG to start this year.

        • Fishjam

          Wheeler has some nice potential. He’s very fast and can get in the paint often. Also good defensive potential. But by no means is he ready to start as a freshman for us. I like Jordan Walker better but I don’t think he is ready to start as a freshman either.

          IMO opinion, once TD announces for Duke, our best option is Walker paired with an able grad-transfer. From the names we are associated with, I think that guy is Geno Thorpe.

          Thorpe has good size/length and is regarded as an excellent defender. Offensively, he has more ability than Madison Jones. He can slash to the basket and is an able 3-pt threat as well as an 85% FT shooter. Walker is also good from 3 and the line and is extremely quick and active with the ball. He doesn’t dribble for the sake of dribbling, he constantly looks to get penetration and dribbles from side to side looking for openings. Walker will be a liability on defense but Thorpe is very good there. A Walker/Thorpe combo with the rest of the team we have would make me happy.

          • Joe Schmoe

            Why is Duval waiting to committ to Duke if thats a done deal? or is duke his option if he cant play with angel? Is angel returning for one more year?

          • hallstorm

            Ok. How about the UMass transfer Jarreau? Is there a chance Williard can gain interest there?

            I would love to see Walker only because he is local and has played with the kids The Hall is still interested in for ’18. Based on your take on Wheeler, I feel a little better. I admittedly haven’t seen him play at all. I’ve at least seen a lot of clips of the local kids the Hall is recruiting.

            And as for all the Jersey and NYC kids, they are drawing every major powerhouse in college basketball recently. I know Williard has put his time in for the Hudson Catholic trio, Reid, Carey and Forrester. I just hope some of them payoff. I really think King and a guard (I realize Quinerly is a long shot, but it’s a good thing we got in early on Carey as his stock is soaring) are imperative based on time spent for these kids. We really need to keep at least a few of these guys home for college. I can only hope more of them think like Isaiah Washington.

  • Khadeen Carrington not included on the NBA early entry list. Had said he was going to enter without agent. Guess not

  • Matt

    I really have a hard time understanding how no incoming freshman/transfer PGs want to come to SHU. You have the opportunity to get guaranteed minutes on a team with all seniors next year and that is projected to be in the Top 25. These guys graduate next year and the team is yours. It does’t make any sense to me. On a side note, does anyone know anything about this Romaro Gill guy. All I have been reading is the he is a 7 footer and judging by some of previous 6′ 11″/ 7 footers, size isn’t always an indicator of effectiveness.

    • Matt

      I do think at this point a rental PG would be our best bet. When we had the two scholarships left I thought a freshman and transfer would have been ideal so that the freshman can develop under the veteran. Now I think we just need a guy that will be able to run the floor right away. Oh and Duval would be nice!

  • PadrePirate

    WHAT?!? This Romaro Gill thing comes out of nowhere, at least to fans begging for two PGs. I know nothing about the kid, but that seems to me to be a huge mistake. A freshman PG like Wheeler or Walker + a Grad transfer like Thorpe seemed like the obvious post-Duval Plan B. Either the coaching staff knows something we don’t (like TD is really still on the fence or AD is really gone), or they think we can live with only ONE Madison-type PG…Ugh

    Moreover, an under-recruited 7-footer has “Chier Anjou” written all over his size 14 sneakers. We already have a not-so-athletic PF/foul machine on the bench (RA). Who needs another PF/C with Ish, Nzei, Rasheed, Brodie, and Mamu, not to mention maybe Angel? **Disregard this post if TD is really coming and Gill is really a stud**

  • hallstorm

    Who the hell is Romaro Gill?