The West Virginia men’s basketball team released the home portion of the 2018 non-conference schedule, which is a little blah except for one game. Overall, the Mountaineers will host only one “Power 6” team, but will welcome age-old rivals Pill to the WVU Coliseum for another renewal of the Backyard Brawl on Saturday, Dec. 8, time TBA.
WVU will debut its 2018-2019 team to home fans on Saturday, Nov. 3, in an exhibition against Alderson Broaddus, from Philippi. The first real game of the season is Friday, Nov. 9, against Buffalo. After the Thanksgiving break in Myrtle beach, the Mountaineers will host Valparaiso on Saturday, Nov. 24, and Rider on Wednesday, Nov. 28. December then kicks off with a matchup against Youngstown State on Saturday, Dec. 1.
The marquee matchup of the non-conference schedule occurs on Saturday, Dec. 8 as the Pitt Panthers, who finished the 2017-2018 season with a 8-24 record, going 0-18 in the ACC, and firing their coach, come into town. The Panthers will be breaking in new head coach Jeff Capel, who comes to Pittsburgh from Duke.
After that, WVU will take a break for finals and resume play on Saturday, Dec. 22 against Jacksonville State and finish the non-con slate on Sunday Dec. 30 against Lehigh.
WVU’s non-conference opponents averaged a 172.85 RPI ranking at the end of the 2017-2018 season, with Buffalo being the highest at 25 and Youngstown State being the lowest at 323. Pitt had the second-worst RPI of these opponents with a 230 ranking.