The first half of the Bruins’ schedule was made official Wednesday.
With less than 12 weeks until the start of the season, UCLA men’s basketball announced its out-of-conference schedule, consisting of five matchups against Power Five and AAC opponents.
First up on the slate will be a preseason exhibition against New York Institute of Technology, an NCAA Division II squad from Old Westbury, New York. The game will be played in Pauley Pavilion on Oct. 27, 10 days before the start of the regular season.
The Bruins will kick off the regular season in the U.S. this year after opening in China last year, and they will stay at home for their first five games. Purdue Fort Wayne and Long Beach State will travel to Westwood on Nov. 6 and Nov. 9 respectively, with Saint Francis and Presbyterian coming to town the following week.
UCLA’s first big-time matchup will be against Michigan State on Thanksgiving Day for the opening game of the Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational. The next day, the Bruins will play either the North Carolina Tar Heels or the Texas Longhorns, depending on which teams win on day one.
UCLA will return to Pauley Pavilion for its next four games, with the first two matchups against Hawai’i and Loyola Marymount.
Notre Dame will travel to Westwood on Saturday, Dec. 8 for UCLA’s premier home out-of-conference matchup. The last time the Bruins and Fighting Irish faced off was in 2009 in Indiana, when Notre Dame won 84-73. UCLA leads the all-time series 28-20 in a rivalry that has faded drastically since the John Wooden-Digger Phelps matchups in the ’70s.
After ending their four-game home stand against Belmont the following Saturday, the Bruins hit the road and take on Cincinnati. The Bearcats and Bruins played last December, with Cincinnati winning 77-63 in Pauley Pavilion before they went on to earn a No. 2 seed in the NCAA tournament.
UCLA will stick around the midwest and take on Ohio State later that week in the CBS Sports Classic in Chicago. The Bruins and Buckeyes last played in December 2016, with guards Aaron Holiday and Bryce Alford scoring 20 points apiece en route to a UCLA victory – bringing the then-No. 2 team to 12-0 on the season.
UCLA will close out its nonconference schedule against Liberty with its 10th and final out-of-conference home game, with the Pac-12 schedule starting the following week. The Bruins’ conference schedule is yet to be finalized.