Cal Basketball: Nonconference Schedule Includes Saint Mary's, Possibly Duke

Saint Mary's has a number of returning players from the team that beat No. 1 Gonzaga last season.Photo by David Butler II
Jake Curtis

A trip to New York’s Madison Square Garden where Cal might face Duke, a game in San Francisco’s new Chase Center and a home game against Saint Mary’s highlight the Cal men’s basketball nonconference schedule for 2019-20, which was announced this week.

In Mark Fox’s first season as the Bears’ head coach, the Golden Bears are scheduled to play 13 nonconference games, eight of which will be at home at Haas Pavilion. Two of the road games are against Bay Area foes San Francisco (December 4) and Santa Clara (December 7).

"I'm pleased we can announce early enough for our fans to plan and we're looking forward to debuting a squad full of young talent to a supportive and reenergized fanbase," said Fox in a statement. "The goal of a nonconference schedule is to prepare you for Pac-12 play, and this schedule does that. We have lots of work to do to get ready for the season."

Cal plays an exhibition game at home against St. Martin’s on Oct. 30 and officially open the 2019-20 season against Pepperdine at Haas Pavilion on November 5.

The Bears begin the season with four home games, starting with Pepperdine, then hosting UNLV (Nov. 12), Cal Baptist (Nov. 15) and Prairie View A&M (Nov. 18) before heading to New York to play in the four-team Empire Classic.

Matchups in that two-day Empire Classic have not been announced, but the field includes Duke, Texas and Georgetown. Cal will play two games in that event on Nov. 21-22 at Madison Square Garden. Cal will face two of the other three teams so the Bears' chances of facing Duke are good.

One of the nonconference highlights will be a Dec. 14 game at Haas Pavilion against Saint Mary’s, which is expected to be ranked in the preseason polls. This past season, the Gaels beat Gonzaga when the Bulldogs were ranked No. 1, then gave Villanova a run in the NCAA Tournament before losing by four points.

The Bears will play in the Chase Center, the new home of the Golden State Warriors, when it faces Boston College at the Al Attles Classic on Dec. 21 as one of four games on the same day at that venue.

Cal completes the nonconference slate on Dec. 29 when the Bears host Harvard.

Cal's full schedule, including Pac-12 dates, game times and broadcast details, will be announced in September.

Season ticket deposits for the upcoming 2019-20 campaign are now being accepted. The $100 per-seat deposit will be applied to the final balance of each seat. Times and dates for seat selection will be announced at a later date.

For questions or more information on 2019-20 Cal basketball season tickets, contact the Gold Standard service team at (800) GO BEARS (462-3277) and press option 3.

Nonconference schedule (date, opponent, site)

Wednesday, Oct. 30 -- St. Martin’s (exhibition), Haas Pavilion

Tuesday, Nov. 5 -- Pepperdine, Haas Pavilion

Tuesday, Nov. 12 -- UNLV, Haas Pavilion

Friday, Nov. 15 -- Cal Baptist, Haas Pavilion-x

Monday, Nov. 18 -- Prairie View A&M, Haas Pavilion-x

Thursday, Nov. 21 -- Empire Classic, TBA, Madison Square Garden

Friday, Nov. 22 -- Empire Classic, TBA, Madison Square Garden

Tuesday, Nov. 26 -- UC Davis, Haas Pavilion

Wednesday, Dec. 4 -- San Francisco, San Francisco

Saturday, Dec. 7 -- Santa Clara, Santa Clara

Wednesday, Dec. 11 -- Fresno State, Haas Pavilion

Saturday, Dec. 14 -- Saint Mary’s, Haas Pavilion

Saturday, Dec. 21 -- Boston College, Chase Center, San Francisco

Sunday, Dec. 29 -- Harvard, Haas Pavilion

x-Campus-site games of the Empire Classic