The Utah State men's basketball team will start its schedule off with one of its toughest games, but on their home court.
In fact, the Aggies won't be leaving the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum much at all during their non-conference schedule, released Thursday by the team.
USC, Pacific, Weber State and BYU should provide stiff challenges early on for Utah State. But the Aggies will only play three games on the road in their first dozen games, only one of which is outside the state.
The team, which struggled to a 21-10 record last season after injury setbacks, will play outside Utah on Nov. 16 against UC Santa Barbara. It will host most other opponents in the Spectrum.
But despite few tough road contests, the Aggies will have its hands full in the first month of the season. The USC Trojans, under new head coach Andy Enfield, will open the year, followed by visits from Southern Utah and Mississippi State.
The thorniest patch of the non-conference schedule will likely come at Weber State on Nov. 26, followed by a neutral court game versus BYU at Energy Solutions Arena only four days later.
From then until the start of Mountain West play, the Aggies won't have to leave home. They'll face Pacific, Utah Valley and San Diego Christian to round out the schedule.
Utah State will also host another tournament, the Basketball Travelers Classic, featuring UC Santa Barbara, Troy and a team to be named. The tournament runs from Dec. 19-21.
Utah State staying home
2013 Non-conference schedule (All times MT)
10/25 vs. Central Methodist, 7:05 p.m. (Ex.)
11/01 vs. Adams State, 7:05 p.m (Ex.)
11/08 vs. USC, 7:05 p.m.
11/12 vs. Southern Utah, 7:05 p.m.
11/16 at UC Santa Barbara, TBA
11/23 vs. Mississippi State, 7:05 p.m.
11/26 at Weber State, TBA
11/30 vs. BYU (at Energy Solutions Arena), 7 p.m.
12/07 vs. Pacific, 7:05 p.m.
12/14 vs. Utah Valley, 7:05 p.m.
12/19 vs. TBA, 8:05 p.m.
12/20 vs. UC Santa Barbara, 8:05 p.m.
12/21 vs. Troy, 8:05 p.m.
12/28 vs. San Diego Christian, 7:05 p.m.