The SEC offices released their 2015 conference basketball schedule on Friday, and there are a few interesting notes for Billy Kennedy and the 2014-2015 Men's Basketball program.
But first, let's decipher the schedule structure.
Determining the 2015 opponents
Each team's schedule consists of the following:
- A home-and-home with their permanent rival (ours is LSU)
- Four additional home-and-homes, assigned on a rotating basis over three years
- Eight "single game" opponents (four home, four away), also assigned on a rotating basis over three years
- 2015 home-and-home opponents : LSU (rival), Florida, Auburn, Alabama, Missouri
- 2015 "home only" opponents: Kentucky, MSU, Vandy, Georgia
- 2015 "road only" opponents: Tennessee, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Arkansas
The 2015 Schedule
OK, so we know the opponents... how does our schedule stack up?
To be honest, it's a tale of two halves.
That's a rough opening ten games, six of which are on the road. And those trips to LSU, Tennessee, Ole Miss, and Mizzou are among our toughest conference road games. The home games against Kentucky and Missouri are no gimme, either, and I'll be happy if we skate through this section with a .500 record.
But if we can get that split over the first ten, it will look especially nice when you consider these final eight games, which include five in the friendly confines and manageable road trips to South Carolina and Arkansas.
Sure, we get Florida twice... but it's not a huge stretch to see us going 6-2 (or 5-3 at the worst) to close things out.
So, apparently there's this thing called the SEC Network? 12 of our 18 conference games will be featured on the new channel, which is huge news for Aggie Basketball fans. These were the games that were sometimes tough to find in prior years, and it's going to be very nice to have them available in HD.
The remaining six games land on CBS (Kentucky), ESPN (@LSU), FSN (@Tennessee/Alabama), and ESPNU (@Florida and @Mizzou)
A&M was very successful (7-2) in home conference games last season, but that was completely offset by a 1-13 record in all games away from Reed Arena. With this year's schedule promising a rougher home slate and more winnable road games, maintaining that confidence at home will be key. If we can take care of business at Reed and nab some middle-tier wins on the road, our impressive non-conference slate (which includes an excellent field at the Puerto Rico Tip-Off) should be enough for serious (i.e., non-CBI) postseason consideration.