NORMAN – University of Oklahoma women's basketball coach Sherri Coale and Vice President and Director of Athletics Joe Castiglione announced the Sooners' 2017-18 non-conference schedule on Wednesday.
The challenging slate features nine matchups against teams that participated in the postseason a year ago, including four NCAA Tournament teams: Belmont, Connecticut, DePaul and Oregon. Nine of OU's 11 regular-season foes won at least 20 games last season, highlighted by Final Four participant UConn and Elite Eight team Oregon.
The Sooners will also host six home contests prior to the start of Big 12 play, including matchups with NCAA Tournament squads Belmont and South Florida.
“Our team will be challenged early and often during non-conference play as nine of our 11 opponents participated in the 2017 postseason,” OU head coach Sherri Coale said. “We lead off with a talented and experienced Belmont squad and finish up with Connecticut, while facing a daunting road swing in between during Thanksgiving break. That road trip, which features stops at Colorado State, Oregon and Little Rock, will test us mentally and physically. I look at is as a championship opportunity to prepare for both Big 12 play and the NCAA Tournament.”
OU begins its season with an exhibition matchup against Southwestern Oklahoma State on Nov. 7 inside Lloyd Noble Center. The Sooners open the regular season with back-to-back matchups against 2017 NCAA Tournament squads. OU will host Belmont (27-6; NCAA First Round) on Nov. 10 before traveling to DePaul (27-8; NCAA Second Round) on Nov. 13.
The Sooners return to Norman for a Nov. 17 home game against SMU (19-15; WNIT Third Round) before hitting the road for three games. Oklahoma heads to Colorado State (25-9; WNIT Second Round) on Nov. 21 for a rematch after the Sooners topped the Rams, 70-55, in Norman in 2016.
OU will travel to Oregon (23-14; NCAA Elite Eight) for the PK80 Invitational in Eugene, Ore., on Nov. 25 before wrapping up the road swing at Little Rock (25-9; WNIT Second Round) on Nov. 28.
The Big 12/SEC Challenge comes to Lloyd Noble Center on Dec. 3 as the Sooners host Florida (15-16) for the first-ever meeting between the two teams. OU returns to the road on Dec. 6 to take on South Dakota State (23-9; WNIT Second Round). The Sooners defeated South Dakota State, 74-60, a year ago in Norman.
Oklahoma closes its home non-conference slate by hosting South Florida (23-9; NCAA First Round) on Dec. 9 and New Mexico (15-15) on Dec. 16.
The Sooners take on Connecticut (36-1; NCAA Final Four) in the Women's Holiday Hoops Showcase at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., to close out their non-conference schedule.
OU finished the 2016-17 season ranked No. 21 in the USA Today Coaches Poll after appearing in its 18th consecutive NCAA Tournament. The Sooners finished the 2016-17 season with a 23-10 record and claimed third in the Big 12 standings.
Tip-off times and broadcast information will be announced at a later date.
Season tickets for 2017-18 Oklahoma women's basketball can be reserved today with a $50 deposit. For more information, contact the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 456-4668.
OU's 18-game Big 12 Conference schedule is expected to be announced at a later date. The 2018 Big 12 Women's Basketball Championship returns to Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, March 2-5.
|2017-18 Oklahoma Women's Basketball Non-Conference Schedule|
|Nov. 7||Southwestern Oklahoma State (Exh.)||Norman||TBD|
|Nov. 13||at DePaul||Chicago, Ill.||TBD|
|Nov. 21||at Colorado State||Ft. Collins, Colo.||TBD|
|Nov. 25||at Oregon !||Eugene, Ore.||TBD|
|Nov. 28||at Little Rock||Little Rock, Ark.||TBD|
|Dec. 3||Florida $||Norman||TBD|
|Dec. 6||at South Dakota State||Billings S.D.||TBD|
|Dec. 9||South Florida||Norman||TBD|
|Dec. 16||New Mexico||Norman||TBD|
|Dec. 19||vs. Connecticut ^||Uncasville, Conn.||TBD|
! – PK80 Invitational – Eugene, Ore.
$ – SEC/Big 12 Challenge – Norman, Okla.
^ – Women's Holiday Showcase – Uncasville, Conn.
Dates and times subject to change