Classes started Wednesday at the University of Dayton. Coach Shauna Green planned to hold her first Dayton Flyers women’s basketball team meeting of the 2019-20 season the same day.
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“Once (Wednesday) hits, it will be rolling,” Green said Tuesday. “It will be rolling good.”
For the next five weeks, the team will hold two 90-minute practices per week and have one hour of individual skill instruction every week as well. Starting Sept. 24, six weeks before the season opener, Dayton can practice 20 hours per week, and Green plans to start that string of practices around Sept. 27.
The Flyers will need all that preparation to survive a non-conference schedule that includes five games against teams that ranked in the top 50 of the RPI last season. Dayton will play at least six teams — and possibly seven, depending on their final opponent in the Gulf Coast Showcase — that played in the NCAA tournament last season.
Dayton released the non-conference schedule Thursday. Times have not been announced. Here’s a quick rundown of the opponents:
Nov. 1, vs. Ashland: This exhibition game will give Dayton fans their first chance to see the renovated UD Arena after the third and final phase of the three-year, $72 million project.
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Nov. 5, vs. Lipscomb: In its regular-season opener, Dayton plays a team that finished 4-25 last season.
Nov. 9, at Toledo: The Flyers play the Rockets for the 10th straight season. Dayton has won six of those games.
Nov. 13, vs. South Carolina: The Gamecocks, who won the national championship in 2017, beat Dayton 65-55 last season in Columbia, S.C. They finished 23-10 and reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament.
Nov. 16, at Northeastern: Dayton lost 84-79 at home to Northeastern last season in the first meeting between the programs and travels to Boston for the rematch.
Nov. 21, at Central Michigan: The Chippewas have won three straight Mid-American Conference regular-season championships and finished 25-8 last season.
Nov. 26, vs. Connecticut: This will be Connecticut’s second game in Ohio in three days. It plays at Ohio State on Nov. 24 The Huskies have won 11 national championships and played in the Final Four 12 straight years.
Nov. 29, vs. Gonzaga in Fort Myers, Fla.: This is Dayton’s opening game in the Gulf Coast Showcase. Gonzaga finished 29-5 last season and ranked 18th in the final Associated Press poll.
Nov. 30, vs. Auburn or Middle Tennessee: In its second game in Florida, Dayton will play Auburn, which finished 22-10 and reached the NCAA tournament last season, or Middle Tennessee, which has played in the NCAA tournament 11 times in the last 16 years.
Dec. 1, vs, TBA in Fort Myers, Fla.: The Flyers will play Arizona State, Maine, Drake — all of whom played in the NCAA tournament last season — or Purdue in its final game in the Gulf Coast Showcase.
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Dec. 5, vs. Morehead State: The Eagles finished 24-11 last season and won a postseason game for the first time in program history, beating Ohio State 71-61 in the first round of the NIT.
Dec. 17, at Buffalo: The third MAC team on the schedule, the Bulls lost 72-59 at Dayton last season. They finished 24-10 and lost 84-72 to Connecticut in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
Dec. 20, vs. Wake Forest in West Palm Beach, Fla.: Dayton returns to the West Palm Beach Tournament for the second straight season. The Demon Deacons finished 10-20 last season.
Dec. 21, vs. East Carolina in West Palm Beach, Fla.: The Pirates finished 16-15 last season.
Dec. 31, vs. Coppin State: The Eagles finished 5-25 last season. It was their worst season since they were 1-24 in 1986-87.