The non-conference schedule for the Dayton Flyers women’s basketball team was released Monday. Coach Jim Jabir called it the most challenging non-conference schedule in his 14 years.
The presence of four-time defending national champion Connecticut alone makes that claim stand up.
“Our goal is to win Atlantic 10 Championships and to get a great seed in the NCAA Tournament,” Jabir said in a press release. “We feel this is the best way to get that done.”
The Flyers play an exhibition game against Grand Valley State on Nov. 6 at UD Arena. They play 12 non-conference games before starting Atlantic 10 play. Here’s how those games rank in order of difficulty. The times of most games have not been announced.
1. At Connecticut, Nov. 22: Two seasons ago, the Flyers led the Huskies 44-43 at halftime in the Elite Eight but lost 70-51. The Huskies lost three seniors, including national player of the year, Breanna Stewart, from a team that finished 38-0.
2. Texas A&M, Dec. 20, at Florida Sunshine Classic: This is the first of two games in Orlando, Fla. Texas A&M finished 21-9 last season and lost in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
3. At Princeton, Nov. 19, noon: The Flyers beat the Tigers 85-81 at UD Arena last season. Princeton returns one starter from a team that finished 23-6 and lost in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
4. Georgia Tech, Nov. 25, 1 p.m., Junkanoo Jam: This will be the first of two games in Freeport, Bahamas. The Yellow Jackets were 20-13 last season and lost in the second round of the NIT.
5. Missouri or Creighton, Nov. 26, 1 or 3:15 p.m., Junkanoo Jam: UD will play either of these schools in the second game in the Bahamas. Missouri was 22-10 last season and lost in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
6. Home vs. Quinnipiac, Nov. 13, 2 p.m.: This is the regular-season opener. The Bobcats ranked 87th in the RPI last season and finished 25-9. Dayton last played Quinnipiac in 1998.
7. Home vs. Toledo, Dec. 9: The Flyers won 83-57 in Toledo last season. The Rockets were 17-13 last season.
8. Virginia, Dec. 29, Cavalier Classic: This will be the second game at the Cavalier Classic in Charlottesville, Va. The Cavaliers finished 18-16 last season and return seven letterwinners.
9. At Wisconsin, Nov. 16: The Flyers beat the Badgers 87-64 at UD Arena last season. Wisconsin lost 14 of its last 15 games last season, finishing 7-22. Wisconsin hired Jonathan Tsipis, who spent the last four seasons at George Washington, as head coach in March.
10. Liberty, Dec. 28, Cavalier Classic: The Flames finished 20-13 last season.
11. Old Dominion, Dec. 21: This will be the second game at the Sunshine Classic. The Monarchs were 17-17 last season.
12. Home vs. Morgan State, Dec. 2: The Bears finished 13-17 last season and ranked 257th in the RPI.