The Mountain West announced its 2019 conference men’s basketball schedule today. Nevada has won the last two MW regular season titles under coach Eric Musselman, who was named the 2018 MW Conference Coach of the Year.
The Pack went 15-3 last season and 14-4 in 2017 to become just the second school to win back-to-back outright MW regular season titles. No MW team has won three consecutive outright MW regular season titles.
The 18-game conference schedule is comprised of home-at-home games with eight schools and single games with two MW members. The Pack will play single games at Wyoming and at home against San José State in 2019.
Nevada begins its defense of its MW regular season title at home on Jan. 2 when Utah State comes to Lawlor Events Center where the Pack went 14-1 last year, 8-1 in conference play. The Pack will host San José State Jan. 9, Air Force Jan. 19 and Colorado State Jan. 23 the first month of the season. Four January road contests are Jan. 5 at New Mexico, Jan. 12 at Fresno State, Jan. 16 at Boise State and the first of two meetings with intrastate rival UNLV is slated for Jan. 30 in Las Vegas.
Seven MW contests will be played in the month of February with four being played at Lawlor Events Center against Boise State Feb. 2, New Mexico Feb. 9, Fresno State Feb. 23 and the second meeting with intrastate rival UNLV on Feb. 27. Road games are at Colorado State Feb. 6, the only meeting of the season with Wyoming is Feb. 16 in Laramie, Wyo. and the final road game of the month is at San Diego State Feb. 20.
March starts with road games at Utah State Mar. 2 and at Air Force Mar. 6. The final MW game of the season is with San Diego State Mar. 9 in Reno. The MW Championships is scheduled for Mar. 13-16 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
The schedule dates are not final as Wednesday games may be shifted to a Tuesday and Saturday’s could slide to Sunday to accommodate television. Times and television networks will be announced at a later date.
Nevada has announced two neutral site non-conference games versus Arizona State Dec. 7 in the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles and Dec. 9 versus Grand Canyon in the Jerry Colangelo Classic being played at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Ariz. Both arenas are home to NBA teams.
Two non-conference road games have also been announced with the first being at Loyola University Chicago on Nov. 27 in a rematch of the 2018 Sweet 16 game won by the Ramblers 69-68 in Atlanta. The game is part of the 2018 Challenge Series that matches teams from the Mountain West and Missouri Valley Conference. The Pack will play a second Pac-12 opponent on Dec. 1 making the first of two trips to Los Angeles to face USC at the Galen Center.
The remainder of the non-conference schedule will br released after it is completed.