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UK Releases 2012-13 Schedule; Home Games Look EASY

For the diehard college basketball fan, summer truly is a S-L-O-W period. I mean, you can follow recruiting news, but that’s about it…UNTIL schools release non-conference fall schedules. I’m really excited about Western Kentucky’s impressive slate, and now the University of Kentucky has released its list of non-con opponents. But what gives?

First of all, the UK schedule isn’t the easiest I’ve seen. But the HOME schedule might be. Before SEC play begins, the ‘Cats will welcome the following powerhouses to Rupp Arena: Samford, Lipscomb, and Long Island among others.

The complete schedule is here.

Please understand that I mean no offense to these schools. But do you honestly think ANY of them have a prayer on the Rupp floor? The only interesting home game will be against Baylor–UK’s Elite Eight opponent from last season’s NCAA Tournament.

Now, it’s become less and less of a secret that power schools like Kentucky, North Carolina, Duke, Kansas and others have moved their “big” games to neutral courts. That’s become a well-publicized philosophy of Coach John Calipari’s for some time now.

 

Greg Nelson /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images

 

But a few analysts have noticed the correlation between this relatively easy home schedule and the increase in season ticket prices. You’d like to think the fans would have more interesting games to watch for their money–like last year’s thrilling contests against North Carolina and Louisville.

Of course, it’s not like there won’t be butts in seats. Nothing sells out quite like Rupp Arena during basketball season…regardless of the competition. But the games, admittedly, won’t be as tough–at least, not like they will be away from Rupp.

That’s the interesting part of all of this; Kentucky’s schedule isn’t super easy. It’s just that all the hot action, save the Baylor game, will be away from home:  contests against Maryland in Brooklyn, Louisville and Notre Dame in THEIR gyms, and, of course, Duke in Atlanta would whet any college hoops fan’s appetite.

It’s gonna be a fun year, and  the Southeastern Conference has expanded by two teams and the schedule by two games. But if you’re going to a non-conference match-up at Rupp next season…well…take a book.

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