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Wake Forest Basketball: Non-Conference Schedule Announced

The non-conference schedule has been revealed

NCAA Basketball: Wake Forest at Clemson Dawson Powers-USA TODAY Sports

The Wake Forest Men’s basketball team has released the non-conference portion of the 2022-23 schedule.

Here’s the schedule listed out since these images always have the smallest font possible:

Nov. 7th: Fairfield

Nov. 11th: Georgia

Nov 15th: Utah Valley

Nov 18th: La Salle (Jamaica Classic)

Nov. 20th: Georgetown or Loyola Marymount (Jamaica Classic)

Nov. 23rd: South Carolina State

Nov. 26: Hampton

Nov. 29th: @ Wisconsin (ACC-B1G Challenge)

Dec. 10th: LSU (Holiday Hoopsgiving)

Dec. 14th: App State

Dec. 17th: @ Rutgers

Last season’s non-conference slate got quite a bit of scrutiny at the end of the season, as it was likely the only thing that kept the Deacs out of the NCAA Tournament. After going 6-16 and a large percentage of the team transferring in Forbes’s first year, it made sense at the time for Wake Forest to try and schedule an easier slate of games for the start of the season. Unfortunately, it was hard to overlook a non-conference schedule that ranked 350th (out of 358) in strength of schedule per KenPom when Selection Sunday rolled around. Let’s see if that had any impact on this year’s non-conference schedule.

Non-Conference Schedule Results Last Season

Opponent Record KenPom
Opponent Record KenPom
Fairfield 15-18 206
Georgia 6-26 219
Utah Valley 20-12 119
Georgetown** 6-25 175
Loyola Marymount** 11-18 203
La Salle 11-19 229
SC State 15-16 306
Hampton 9-19 326
Wisconsin* 25-8 37
LSU* 22-12 21
App State 19-15 166
Rutgers* 18-14 77

*NCAA Tournament team

** Potential opponent in Jamaica Classic

This is obviously not going to be a completely accurate representation of the strength of these teams next season since players and coaches change so frequently now (off the top of my head, I know that both LSU and Georgia have new coaches). However, based on the chart above it looks like the basketball program is definitely making an effort to increase the strength of the schedule; last season the average KP rank in the non-conference came out to about 225, whereas this season it is 174. I think that is a good indication that the program is on the rise and getting to the point where they don’t need to bank on multiple wins against 300+ ranked teams at the beginning of the season.

My first glance reaction: despite the increased strength of opponent, Wisconsin and Rutgers could be the only teams standing between Wake Forest and an 11-0 start. Both of those games being on the road is definitely going add to the difficulty. I think the Deacs are up to the challenge.

Go Deacs!