Cal will play eight of its 11 nonconference basketball games at home, and only one of those 11 games will be played on the homecourt of the Bears' opponent, according to the Cal nonconference schedule that was released Thursday.
Cal will be bidding for its first winning season under third-year coach Mark Fox, who went 14-18 in his first season and 8-19 last season. Cal returns five players who started more than 10 games last season, although leading scorer Matt Bradley transferred to San Diego State in the offseason.
The highlight of the nonconference schedule is a trip to Fort Myers, Fla., for the Fort Myers Tip-Off event in which the Bears will face Florida on November 22 and either Ohio State or Seton Hall on November 24. If the Bears face Ohio State, they would be facing Justice Sueing, who began his college career at Cal before transferring to Ohio State following the 2018-19 season.
Cal will play seven of its nonconference games before it plays its opening Pac-12 game against Oregon State on Dec. 2. The Bears will play their second conference game on Dec. 5 against Utah, then play their remaining four nonconference games before resuming Pac-12 play.
Following an exhibition game against Cal State LA on Nov. 1 in Berkeley, the Golden Bears will open the regular season at home on Tuesday, Nov. 9 against against UC San Diego, which became a Division I program In June 2020.
Cal's only true road game in its nonconference schedule will take place four days later on Saturday, Nov. 13 against UNLV in Las Vegas. Cal then plays consecutive home games against San Diego (Nov. 15) and Southern Utah (Nov. 18) before heading to Fort Myers to face Florida. (For clarification, UC San Diego plays in the Big West Conference, and San Diego plays in the West Coast Conference.)
The Bears return home for a Nov. 28 game against Fresno State, giving Bears guard Jarred Hyder an opportunity to go up against his former team.
Following the two Pac-12 games, Cal will finish its nonconference schedule with four home games -- against Idaho State (Dec. 8), Santa Clara (Dec. 11), Dartmouth (Dec. 19) and Pacific (Dec. 22).
Cal did not play any of these 11 nonconference opponents last season, when the Bears were limited to eight nonconference games because of the pandemic.
Cal's Nonconference Basketball Schedule
Monday, Nov. 1, at Berkeley -- Cal State LA (exhibition)
Tuesday, Nov. 9, at Berkeley -- UC San Diego
Saturday, Nov. 13, at Las Vegas -- UNLV
Monday, Nov. 15, at Berkeley -- San Diego
Thursday, Nov. 18, at Berkeley -- Southern Utah
Monday, Nov. 22, at Fort Myers, Fla. -- Florida
Wednesday, Nov. 24, at Fort Myers, Fla. -- Ohio State or Seton Hall
Sunday, Nov. 28, at Berkeley -- Fresno State
Wednesday, Dec. 8, at Berkeley -- Idaho State
Saturday, Dec. 11, at Berkeley -- Santa Clara
Sunday, Dec. 19, at Berkeley -- Dartmouth
Wednesday, Dec. 22, at Berkeley -- Pacific
Cover photo of Joel Brown is by Stephen R. Sylvanie, USA TODAY Sports
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