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SALT LAKE CITY - The 2007-08 University of Utah men's basketball schedule features an appearance in the NIT Season Tip-Off and an entertaining home schedule.
The regular season opens Nov. 9 with a home contest against South Carolina Upstate. The Runnin' Utes will then head to Seattle, Wash. to play in the West Regional of the Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off on Nov. 13 and 14. Utah will face High Point (N.C.) in the first round and either Washington or the New Jersey Institute of Technology in the second round.
The Utes return home Nov. 19 for a date with Santa Clara. If Utah were to win its two games in Seattle, the team would head to New York City for the semifinals and finals of the NIT Season Tip-Off at Madison Square Garden Nov. 21 and 23. November wraps up with a trip up I-15 to Weber State (Nov. 28).
The Runnin' Utes open December with a pair of home games, hosting UC Irvine (Dec. 1) and Utah State (Dec. 5) at the Huntsman Center. Utah then travels to Portland for a Dec. 8 matchup with Oregon in the Pape Jam at the Rose Garden. Utah will play host to Missouri State on Dec. 15 and then travel to Berkeley, Calif. for a matchup with California on Dec. 22. The Utes will play a New Year's Eve tilt in Spokane, facing Gonzaga.
Utah still has two open dates in its non-conference schedule. Those two games will be announced once they are both finalized. Utah's home games with UC Irvine, Utah State and Missouri State will all be televised on The Mtn.
"We've got a very competitive, challenging non-conference schedule," Utah head coach Jim Boylen said. "But that should prepare us for conference play. We've got a lot of quality opponents and a good balance between our home and road games. Scheduling has become very difficult in college basketball and I think we've done a good job of getting quality opponents, both at home and on the road."
The Mountain West Conference schedule has the Runnin' Utes playing four of their first six MWC games at home. Conversely, Utah will be on the road for three of its last four league games.
"We're excited to see the conference schedule," Boylen said. "It's a little different than I'm used to, coming from the Big Ten, where you don't see everyone twice in a season. I'm looking forward to playing a home-and-home with everyone in the conference. We think the league schedule will be very competitive."
Utah opens Mountain West Conference play Jan. 5, hosting the Air Force Academy. The Runnin' Utes host BYU on Jan. 19, TCU on Jan. 26 and Wyoming on Jan. 30. Road games in January include trips to San Diego State (Jan. 16) and New Mexico (Jan. 22). A trip to Colorado State (Feb. 2) and a home matchup with defending conference champion UNLV (Feb. 6) round out the first trip through the league slate. The following is a look at the rest of February's schedule: Feb. 9 - at Air Force, Feb. 16 - San Diego State; Feb. 20 - at BYU; Feb. 23 - New Mexico; Feb. 27 - at TCU.
Three games in early March wrap up the regular season. A road trip to Wyoming is scheduled for March 1. The Utes play their home finale against Colorado State on March 4 and finish the season March 8 at UNLV.
The mtn. will broadcast 10 of Utah's conference games - Jan. 5 vs. Air Force; Jan. 16 at San Diego State; Jan. 22 at New Mexico; Jan. 26 vs. TCU; Jan. 30 vs. Wyoming; Feb. 6 vs. UNLV; Feb. 20 at BYU; Feb. 23 vs. New Mexico; March 1 at Wyoming; and March 4 at Colorado State. Three of Utah's conference games will air nationally on Versus (Jan. 19 vs. BYU; Feb. 16 vs. San Diego State; March 8 at UNLV). CSTV will carry Utah's contest at Air Force to a national audience on Feb. 9.
The Runnin' Utes have two exhibition games scheduled for early November. Utah will host Montana Tech on Nov. 1, while Northwest Nazarene visits the Huntsman Center on Nov. 6.
Game times for all of Utah's 2007-08 schedule will be announced at a later date.