Youngstown, Ohio -- Youngstown State men's basketball Head Coach Jerry Slocum announced the Penguins' 2016-17 13-game non-conference schedule on Tuesday.
"We have another challenging schedule that we are excited about," Slocum said. "Our players will be facing several tough tests in the first couple months of the season, but that will benefit us when Horizon League plays starts."
The Penguins play five non-Horizon League home contests beginning with the Second Annual Northeast Ohio Coaches vs. Cancer Doubleheader when they host Akron, Saturday, Nov. 12. As part of the doubleheader, Horizon League member Cleveland State will face Kent State.
After visiting Mid-American Conference foe Toledo, the Penguins head to South Alabama, Nov. 18-20, for an exempt tournament and will face the Jaguars, Florida International and Jacksonville. The Penguins' home contest against Westminster on Nov. 22 is part of the tournament.
Youngstown State also faces a pair of teams from the Big Ten Conference, Michigan State on Dec. 6, and Ohio State to close out the non-league portion of the slate on Dec. 20.
The Penguins other home games include Canisius (Nov. 26), Oberlin (Dec. 3) and Niagara (Dec. 14). Youngstown State will visit Robert Morris (Nov. 30) and American (Dec. 10).
Season Tickets will go on sale, Sept. 15. For more information, call the YSU Ticket Office at (330) 941-1YSU.
Below are capsules of some of the Penguins' non-league foes:
Akron: The Zips went 26-9 overall and won the Mid-American Conference regular-season championship…lost to Buffalo in the MAC Tournament Championship game…Played Ohio State in the first round of the National Invitational Tournament, lost 72-63…This will be the 89th meeting between Youngstown State and Akron…Zips own a 57-31 advantage in the all-time series.
Toledo: Finished in fifth in the West Division of the Mid-American Conference with a record of 8-10…Overall went 17-15…Under the direction of Tod Kowalczyk, who used to coach at Horizon League member Green Bay…This is the 13th meeting between YSU and Toledo, and the Rockets own a 10-2 advantage in the all-time series.
Jacksonville: Went 16-16 last season with an 8-6 mark in the A-Sun…Lost to Lipscomb, 92-89, in the first round of the A-Sun Tournament…This will be the first meeting between Youngstown State and Jacksonville.
South Alabama: Jaguars are coming off a 14-19 season and an 8-12 mark in the Sun Belt Conference... Beat Georgia Southern, 67-61, in the first round of the Sun Belt Tournament and lost to Louisiana-Lafayette, 90-68, in the second round…The Penguins and Jaguars have met three times previously in the mid-1980s and South Alabama leads the series, 2-1.
FIU: Posted a 13-17 overall record and a 7-10 mark in Conference USA last season…Lost to UAB in the CUSA Tournament…In the only meeting between the schools, Youngstown State defeated FIU, 74-72, in overtime on Nov. 9, 2013.
Canisius: Under the direction of first-year Head Coach Reggie Witherspoon, formerly the head coach at Buffalo…Coming off a 14-19 overall record and an 8-12 MAAC record…This will be the fifth meeting in the all-time series, Canisius leads, 4-0…The Golden Griffins defeated the Penguins, 84-82, in overtime in the second round of the CIT in 2013.
Robert Morris: Coming of a 10-22 record in 2015-16 and an 8-10 mark in the NEC...Lost to Wagner, 59-50, in the first round of the NEC Tournament…The Penguins and Colonials have met 16 times previously…RMU owns a 9-7 advantage in the all-time series…YSU has won the last three contests.
Michigan State: Went 29-6 overall and 13-5 in the B1G…Earned No. 2 seed and won the B1G Tournament with a 66-62 defeat of Purdue…Lost to Middle Tennessee State, 90-81, in the NCAA Tournament…Second meeting between Youngstown State and Michigan State…Previous meeting was in 2006-07 and MSU won, 86-61.
American: The Eagles, who went 12-19 overall and 9-9 in the Patriot League, defeated the Penguins, 60-56, last season at the Beeghly Center in the first meeting between the two schools. American won 10 of its last 14 games in 2015-16.
Niagara: Went 7-25 last season with a 5-15 mark in the MAAC…This will be the 14th meeting between Youngstown State and Niagara…Purple Eagles own a 7-6 lead in the all-time series…YSU won the last meeting, 88-70, last season.
Ohio State: Went 21-14 overall with an 11-7 mark in the B1G…Defeated Akron, 72-63, in overtime and lost to Florida, 74-66, in the second round of the NIT…Fourth meeting between YSU and Ohio State…Buckeyes lead series, 3-0, and the last meeting was in 2006-07.