Ohio State basketball to open 2018/19 seasons against Cincinnati

Those clamoring for Ohio State basketball to play a more challenging non-conference slate got their wish on Tuesday as the Buckeyes announced they will open the 2018 and 2019 seasons with a home-and-home against Cincinnati.

“We have great respect for the UC program and Coach [Mick] Cronin,” first-year Buckeye coach Chris Holtmann said via release. “The idea of challenging ourselves in the non-conference while also providing an attractive game for our collective fan bases certainly made sense to us. We understand the challenge of opening the season on the road vs. a high-caliber opponent with a younger team provides some risk but we felt like it was the right decision at this time.”

The first game will be held at Fifth-Third Arena in Cincinnati in 2018 before the Bearcats come to Columbus in 2019. Ohio State leads the all-time series 6-4.

“This is a great thing for Ohio, for basketball in Ohio and for the fans of these great universities,” Bearcats coach Mick Cronin said via the release. “I want to thank everyone involved in making this happen. We are very excited about reopening our arena next season. Supporting this and agreeing to play Cincinnati in a home-and-home series is a first class move by Ohio State, Coach Chris Holtmann and the OSU administration.”

Holtmann came to Columbus earlier this year and vowed to play a better non-conference schedule moving forward. This year’s slate before Big Ten play is rather vanilla according to most.

This is just one of the steps Holtmann can take to improve the schedule and the coach said he will continue to improve the games in the future.

“We will continue to work to put together a challenging and attractive non-conference schedule in the future within the constraints of the Big Ten schedule as well as the games that have already been contracted,” Holtmann said.

The post Ohio State basketball to open 2018/19 seasons against Cincinnati appeared first on Land of 10.

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