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It Sounds Like Oklahoma State is Going to Play Nebraska in Non-Conference Hoops



Get the Big 8 back together!

Oklahoma State and Nebraska will reportedly play a non-conference game against in South Dakota during this upcoming 2018-19 college basketball season.

The game against the Huskers adds to a suddenly-budding non-conference schedule that includes games against several strong mid-major and Power 5 teams.

  • Houston – Dec. 8 (Stillwater)
  • vs. Minnesota (U.S. Bank Stadium)
  • South Carolina – Jan. 26 (Stillwater)
  • AdvoCare Invitational – Nov. 22, 23, 25 (Orlando, FL)

The AdvoCare Invitational will feature OSU, Memphis, Florida State, the Fightin’ Ben Simmons’ and … gulp … Villanova.

The Pokes played just five top-120 KenPom teams in 2017-18, and now they already have five scheduled from the top 120 of last year’s rankings in Houston, Minnesota, Nebraska, Tulsa and USC. You can also throw whoever OSU plays in the AdvoCare event as well as other games we might not know about yet.

You have to credit them for, at the very least, trying to beef up a nonconference schedule that, for a variety of reasons, was not super rugged in 2017-18.

“I think it was made clear that maybe we played too many of the lower RPI teams and that will be something we address for sure,” Boynton told the Stillwater NewsPress recently.

“I think other than that, there wasn’t a whole lot. I think it was just one of those things where we were on the border and it was a way to keep us out. The key is play better, first of all, play more consistently and then let’s knock off a couple different games and elevate those. We’re still going to play in some tournament and play a marquee game at home and one on the road. Then we’ve got the league – 18 games against teams in the top 75 at worst in the country.”

He found somebody else that was looking to boost the non-con slate, too. Nebraska missed the 2018 NCAA Tournament for largely the same reasons OSU did.

So here’s the issue with the Cornhuskers and something that every coach in a major conference should consider going forward: Your league can hurt you as much as it can help you, and how you schedule in non-conference is paramount to building your seeding/selection case. This may seem obvious, but Nebraska’s predicament proves that conference performance cannot, and sometimes will not, save you.

Prior to Nebraska’s loss on Friday, only eight of 80-plus entries on the always-valuable had Nebraska in the field. The biggest reason for this is Nebraska’s lack of Quadrant 1 victories. The quadrant system is a new tinker to the team sheets for the selection committee. A Quadrant 1 result is defined by a game that is played at home against an RPI opponent ranked 1-30; a neutral game vs. a team whose RPI is 1-50; and a road game against a RPI team in the 1-75 echelon.

“At the end of the day, if Quad 1 is the holy grail, that’s a tough deal,” Miles said. “But I don’t think Quad 1 is the holy grail. There’s tough wins in Quad 3.” [CBS Sports]

They, like Boynton and Co., are trying to rectify that. And they’ll get a chance against a new-look Pokes team at some point over the next eight months. Nebraska should be testy, too. They return the majority of a team that went 22-11 after three Huskers entered the NBA Draft process but withdrew at the end to return to school.

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