Nov 30, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Panthers forward Talib Zanna (right) shoots over Duquesne Dukes center Darius Lewis (54) during the first half at the CONSOL Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

What's up with the 2014-15 Non Conference Schedule?

So the athletic department’s leaving us hanging a little this summer. Last year, they released the non conference schedule on June 26. This year, we’re heading into August with nothing but crumbs of bread and our imagination. We know a little about who Dukes will. We can presume a little more, but in the end there is a lot more that we don’t know.

What We Know

With the expansion of the Atlantic 10 schedule to eighteen games. The Dukes will go from playing thirteen non conference games to eleven or twelve depending on their participation in an exempt tournament. I personally don’t mind as the conference schedule is far more interesting than the most of the non conference fair we get treated too. I’ll gladly trade a game against Abilene Christian for one against Davidson. Below are some dates written in stone:

– The City Game will take place on Friday, December 5th at the Consol Energy. It’s not the first Wednesday, but I’ll take Friday over Saturday hands down.

– The County Game is slated for Saturday, December 13th at the Sewell Center in Moon.

– Duquesne will host Shippensburg for an open scrimmage on November 7, 2014.

– Duquesne and Penn St completed a two home and two away agreement last season. The Dukes also completed a two year home and away series with West Virginia, Albany and Appalachian St.

What We Can Assume

I know what they say about assuming but I feel pretty good about these.

– Duquesne will receive home games from NJIT, UMass Lowell, St Francis (PA) and UT Pan American. I can’t imagine an Atlantic 10 team going to any of those places without the expectation for a return game. While I don’t desire to see any of those teams on the schedule, I’ll be disappointed in the business side if even one isn’t coming to the AJP.

– Since there is no history, Albany and Appy St will not remain to the schedule.

– The Dukes will not travel to New Hampshire, UMBC or Abilene Christian.

What We Don’t Know

Short answer: A lot.

– We’re still unsure if the Dukes will renew their series with Penn St or WVU. The good news is that neither will play Pitt this season. Penn St did last year as part of the ACC / Big East challenge, but the Panthers were paired with Indiana this year. Evidently, that game will rotate, meaning that the Duquesne – Penn St series still makes sense for the Nittany Lions.

– We don’t know if the Dukes will play in an exempt tournament.

***

There will likely be eleven non – conference games this season. Two are set in stones with dates and I would suspect we know four other home opponents based on last year’s road schedule. If the Dukes renew their two other local series, they have three more games to schedule. If PSU and WVU bail, they could have as many as five, but likely none for the Consol Energy Center. I would expect more cupcakes on the road in those remaining three games to engineer some positive results. I also wouldn’t be surprised if one of the expired BCS series takes a break in order to stack some wins.

Tags: Duquesne Dukes

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