Arizona Basketball

Arizona Wildcats top five games in 2013-14; TV schedule released


Sean Miller is four wins shy of his 100th at Arizona as he enters his fifth season in Tucson

Sean Miller is four wins shy of his 100th at Arizona as he enters his fifth season in Tucson

Arizona’s television schedule for hoops was announced today and the Wildcats will play five times on major networks, including the Dec. 14 showdown with Michigan on CBS.

The Wildcats will also play at Oregon on CBS on March 8 in the Pac-12 regular-season finale. CBS’s top broadcast crew in the last two seasons has been Jim Nantz handling the play by play and Clark Kellogg doing the color commentary. New potential broadcast teams will be announced by CBS in October.

The other games on a major network — ESPN — reaching the most viewers at one time:

— The NIT Season Tip-Off tournament semifinals and finals at Madison Square Garden on Nov. 27 and Nov. 29, respectively. Arizona must win games at McKale Center in the first round and quarterfinals to advance to New York. The two games in Tucson are scheduled at 9 p.m.

— The game at ASU on Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14). No love will be lost between the rivals.

Arizona’s visit to Colorado on Feb. 22 has the potential to be selected for ESPN College GameDay, which would mark the third year in a row that the Wildcats would appear on the show. ESPN will make the site determination no later than two weeks prior to the date of the game. The game itself will be televised on ESPN2.

The Wildcats will make 13 appearances on ESPN’s family of networks during the regular season and a dozen on the Pac-12 Network. Every game will be broadcast on a national feed.

One achievement to keep track of early: Sean Miller is four wins shy of his 100th victory at Arizona. He has a 96-43 record at Arizona in his first four seasons. His 96 wins in his first four years are more than any UA coach and more than any other current Pac-12 coach in his first four seasons in the league.

If you’re curious, Lute Olson was 73-48 after his first four seasons at Arizona from 1983-87.

Other than the yet-to-be determined NIT Season Tip-Off matchups

1. Michigan, Dec. 14, 9 a.m. (Tucson time), Ann Arbor, Mich., CBS … The Wolverines are coming off an appearance in the national title game against Louisville. Top storyline: Arizona post player Kaleb Tarczewski trying to hold his own at the post against Michigan’s Mitch McGary. Tarczewski and former high school teammate Nike Stauskas (a sophomore guard) will also face each other. Tarczewski and Stauskas attended St. Mark’s School (Mass.).

2. UCLA, Jan. 9, 7 p.m., Westwood, Calif., ESPN2 … The traditional rivals play each other only once during the regular season which intensifies the magnitude of this game. The game is also the UA’s first Pac-12 road game after the Wildcats open at home against the Washington schools. Top storyline: Aaron Gordon goes against his brother’s former college coach Steve Alford, who coached Drew Gordon at New Mexico. Drew Gordon began his career at UCLA.

3. San Diego State, Nov. 14, 8:05 p.m., San Diego, CBS Sports Network … The rematch of the thriller last year in Hawaii in which Nick Johnson blocked a last-second shot to preserve the UA’s lead. Top storyline: Former UA post player Angelo Chol will not play in the game, having to sit one year per NCAA transfer rules, but he will be on the other bench when the Wildcats travel to San Diego for a difficult non-conference game.

4. UNLV, Dec. 7, 3:15 p.m., McKale Center, ESPN2 … The renewal of the once-heated rivalry between the schools from neighboring states during the years of Lute Olson and Jerry Tarkanian. Top storyline: Johnson and Brandon Ashley will play against one of their coaches at Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep — Todd Simon — who was hired in July by UNLV to be an assistant coach.

5. Oregon, March 8, 1 p.m., Eugene, Ore., CBS … The final game of the Pac-12 regular season should be an intense affair deciding potentially the regular-season champ or seeding in the conference tournament the following week. Top storyline: Oregon coach Dana Altman and Miller continue their mini rivalry dating back to their competitive games while with Creighton and Xavier, respectively. Altman was 3-1 against Miller while at Creighton and is 2-2 against him at Oregon. publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He also writes blogs for Lindy’s College Sports, and Sports Illustrated-sponsored site


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