Philadelphia The University of Pennsylvania Athletic Department has announced the 2004-05 men’s basketball schedule. The Quakers will make their third appearance in the 2004 National Invitation Tournament (NIT) when they open the season against Quinnipiac in The Palestra on Nov. 16.
“I think we have a very challenging schedule again this year,” Head Coach Fran Dunphy who will begin his 16th season on the Red and Blue sideline said. “As usual, we will be competing against teams from the Ivy League and the Philadelphia Big 5, which in itself is a daunting task. But then you throw into the mix another group of teams that have reached the postseason at one point or another over the past two years, and you really have your hands full in preparing your program for conference play. I think we have the depth and talent to accomplish our goals this season, we just need some games under our belt to give our younger guys some experience.”
The Quakers are slated to meet four 2004 NCAA Tournament participants Wisconsin (Nov. 20), Illinois-Chicago (Jan. 8), Saint Joseph’s (Jan. 25) and Princeton (Feb. 8 and March 8) throughout the season. Penn will also meet La Salle in the fourth annual Philadelphia Big 5 Classic on Dec. 4 at The Palestra and will make a trip to the west coast to meet San Francisco on Jan. 4 to begin the new year.
Penn will travel to preseason No. 17 Wisconsin to complete a home-and-home series with the Badgers on Nov. 20 and will face preseason No. 30 Villanova in a New Year’s Eve matchup at the Pavilion on Dec. 31.
The NIT, which was inaugurated in 1985, kicks off on campus sites throughout the nation with first round action November 15 and 16. The second round follows up on November 17-19 with the semifinal and championship doubleheaders coming to New York’s Madison Square Garden on November 24 and 26. Certain games will be seen on ESPN and ESPN2.
The Quakers, who went 17-10 before losing three of their top five scorers to graduation in 2004, return nine letterwinners, including two-time All-Ivy League guard, senior Tim Begley.
The complete 2004-05 Penn men’s basketball schedule to follow.