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Oregon State Basketball: A Mid-Summer Look At the 2017-2018 Schedule So Far

While the official schedule has yet to be revealed, the majority of the slate is already coming into focus.

NCAA Basketball: St. John at Syracuse Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon State basketball is expected to release their full schedule for the upcoming 2017-2018 season sometime in the next few weeks but until then, we recapped the known match-ups that have already been released along the way. At the moment, head coach Wayne Tinkle and company have 25 games accounted for heading into next year, which can be broken down between 18 Pac-12 contests and 7 games in the non-conference portion. Overall, it’s projected that Oregon State will add around 4-6 more contests to their schedule, which would hover them around the usual 30-game plateau. Below, we take a look at the toughest match-ups and the potential confidence-building games in what will be a colossal transition year for the program.

The Non-Conference Slate

Not counting their known (St. John’s) and projected opponents (Missouri/Long Beach State) in the 2017 Advocare Invitational, Oregon State’s non-conference schedule looks to be fairly manageable at the moment, assuming the Beavers re-group as expected from last season’s 5-27 debacle.

The most challenging of their known foes thus far could be Wyoming, who brings back 78% of their scoring from last year’s 23-15, CBI Championship squad. The Cowboys are projected to be a darkhorse contender in the Mountain West, led by a trio of rising juniors in Justin James (16.0 PPG), Hayden Dalton (12.2 PPG) and Alan Herndon (11.1 PPG).

Kent State is a bit of an enigma, as the Golden Flashes need to find a replacement for all-league forward Jimmy Hall (19.0 PPG) and guard Deon Edwin (13.1 PPG), but head coach Rob Senderoff does return three other starters to the mix. If the backcourt duo of Jaylin Walker (15.8 PPG) and Kevin Zabo (5.6 PPG) can fill bigger roles on the fly, Kent State is a team that can turn some heads in the Mid-American Conference (MAC).

Saint Louis will be entering the second season of the Travis Ford-era, where the Billikens will be trying to carve their path in the A-10 after last year’s 12-21 showing. Expected to be helped by a bevy of transfers which include Adonys Henriquez (Central Florida), Javon Bess (Michigan State), D.J. Foreman (Rutgers) and Rashed Anthony (Seton Hall), Saint Louis should be a much-improved group from a season ago.

However, the same may not be able to be said about Southern Utah. While the Thunderbirds struggled in year one under former UNLV interim head coach Todd Simon, Southern Utah was marginally excited about the potential of their 2017-2018 squad, centered around star player Randy Onwuasor. However, Onwuasor and his 23.6 points per game average has recently been granted a release from the program, leaving the production void to be left on the shoulders of guard James McGee (14.2 PPG) and developing forward Jacob Calloway (7.2 PPG).

The Advocare Invitational (November 23rd-26th)

The focal point of the Beavers out-of-league slate will come around Thanksgiving, when Oregon State heads to ESPN’s Wide World of Sports in Florida to take part in the 2017 Advocare Invitational. In the first round, Wayne Tinkle’s guys have drawn an intriguing match-up with St. John’s, as both the Beavers and Red Storm are programs with very unknown 2017-2018 projections.

St. John’s is coming off a 14-19 season in year two of the Chris Mullin era and heading into year three, the breakthrough moment for the Red Storm could be on the horizon. The Johnnies return one of the most feared backcourts in the Big East between rising sophomores Shamorie Ponds (17.4 PPG) and Marcus LoVett (15.9 PPG), but the team seriously needs to figure out their consistency issues. The Red Storm were a roller-coaster of a group a year ago, tacking stunning wins over Syracuse and Butler to their resume, while dropping games to the likes of Delaware State and LIU-Brooklyn.

In the second round of the event, Oregon State will run into either Missouri, one of the projected favorites in the field, or Long Beach State, a team that squeaked by the Beavers with a late rally a season ago. If the opponent is Missouri, Oregon State will meet up a familiar coaching foe in former California head coach Cuonzo Martin, who will be banking on a much-heralded freshman class to kick-start the Tigers program into contention in the SEC. If it’s the 49ers, the Beavers will be hoping to exact revenge against a program that clipped them with a late rally in the Dam City Classic a season ago.

The Pac-12 Portion

The best way to comprehend the true measure of Oregon State’s league slate is to take a look at our Pac-12 Basketball Weekly Pairings Analysis, where we broke down both the good and the not-so-good of the Beavers conference draw. But for those who “like the long story short”, Oregon State basically will play all of the projected top-four teams in the league twice (Arizona, USC, UCLA, Oregon) and the Civil War will be completed (both games) by late January, for better or worse.

On the more optimistic side of things, the Beavers will play three home games (Colorado, Utah and Oregon) to start Pac-12 play, which includes a Civil War match-up and their only contests against the Buffaloes and Utes on the season. Oregon State sacrifices a trip to the mountainous regions for a journey to California and Stanford, who are the two teams not headed to Corvallis this year. The Beavers also garnered an absolutely brutal January stretch, which was featured below in our previous piece.

The Beavers potential January opponents? Oregon. Arizona. Arizona State. UCLA. USC. Oregon. Stanford (Or California). Even if Oregon State starts things off on the right foot in December during home meetings with Colorado and Utah, the Beavers’ start to the 2018 calendar year could get really ugly. They’ll host the Ducks first, travel to the Grand Canyon State for two daunting clashes, host the Trojans and Bruins in Corvallis, head back across state to Eugene and then either make their way to Palo Alto or Berkeley. In those seven games, there’s legitimate potential to not find one single victory. What a welcome to conference play.

List Of Opponents

Non-Conference (In No Particular Order)

1. Saint Louis

2. Southern Utah

3. Wyoming

4. Kent State

5. Advocare Game #1 - St. John’s

6. Advocare Game #2 - MIZZ/LBSU

7. Advocare Game #3 - UCF/NEB/WVU/MAR

Pac-12 Conference Opponents (In Order)

8. Colorado

9. Utah

10. Oregon

11. Arizona

12. Arizona State

13. UCLA

14. USC

15. Oregon

16. California

17. Stanford

18. Washington

19. Washington State

20. UCLA

21. USC

22. Arizona

23. Arizona State

24. Washington

25. Washington State