Looking ahead at NC State's 2021-22 schedule
NC State has already been mentioned in multiple college basketball scheduling reports for the 2021-22 season, the most recent being a matchup with Louisiana Tech in Raleigh.
While the Wolfpack's ACC schedule won't be known until the conference officially releases its schedule, the Pack's non-conference opponents are beginning to take shape. However, that no longer includes a tournament in the Bahamas after it was revealed the Pack has been replaced by Louisville in that event that will also include Maryland and Mississippi State.
Not yet announced are the ACC/Big 10 Challenge games, but the Pack is in line to host a game this year after being scheduled to play at Michigan in 2020, a contest canceled by COVID-19 issues at NC State.
Here is an updated look ahead at what we know about NC State's 2021-22 schedule:
Nov. 9 vs. Bucknell
2020-21 Record: 5-7
Final NET Ranking: 225th
Final KenPom Ranking: 276th
• Bucknell finished in second place of the central division in the 2020-21 Patriot League regular-season standings.
• NC State won the only head-to-head meeting between the two schools. The Wolfpack defeated the Bison 99-86 on Dec. 5, 2015, in PNC Arena.
• Bucknell last appeared in the NCAA Tournament in 2018 with an automatic bid from winning the Patriot League conference tournament. The Bison earned a No. 14 seed and lost to third-seeded Michigan State 82-78.
Nov. 27 vs. Louisiana Tech
2020-21 Record: 24-8
Final NET Ranking: 71st
Final KenPom Ranking: 82nd
• Louisiana Tech finished first in the Conference USA West division with a 12-4 conference mark but lost in the second round of the league's tournament.
• They received a bid to the NIT and made a run to the semifinals before losing to Mississippi State and then defeated Colorado State to finish third.
• They are expected to return three of its four double-digit scorers from last season.
• In the calendar year of 2021, NC State will have faced Louisiana Tech in baseball, basketball and football.
Dec. 12 vs. Purdue (Barclays Center, Brooklyn, N.Y.)
2020-21 Record: 18-10
Final NET Ranking: 29th
Final KenPom Ranking: 25th
• Purdue finished fourth in the 2020-21 Big Ten regular-season standings. The Boilermakers went on to lose to Ohio State 87-78 in overtime in the Big Ten Tournament.
• Purdue earned a No. 4 seed with an at-large bid in the 2021 NCAA Tournament but was upset by 13th-seeded North Texas 78-69 in the first round.
• NC State is 4-1 all-time against Purdue, but the Boilermakers won the most recent meeting. Purdue defeated the Wolfpack 66-61 in West Lafayette on Dec. 2, 2014 in the ACC-Big Ten Tournament.
• Purdue is an early consensus pick to be in the preseason top 10 in 2021-22. In ESPN's way-too-early preseason top 25 rankings, the Boilermakers are No. 6. Head coach Matt Painter is expected to to return his top eight scorers from last season, headlined by first-team All-Big Ten big man Trevion Williams, who entered the 2021 NBA Draft but is predicted to return to college.
Dec. 17 vs. Richmond (Spectrum Center, Charlotte, N.C.)
2020-21 Record: 14-9
Final NET Ranking: 68th
Final KenPom Ranking: 65th
• Richmond finished eighth in the 2020-21 Atlantic 10 regular season standings with a 6-5 conference record.
• The Spiders had an eerily similar postseason to the Wolfpack earlier this year. Richmond lost its first-round matchup in the Atlantic 10 Tournament 67-62 to Duquesne. The Spiders earned a No. 2 seed in the NIT, where they defeated third-seeded Toledo 76-66 in the first round but lost to fourth-seeded Richmond 68-67 in the quarterfinals.
• NC State is 4-0 all-time against Richmond. The Wolfpack last defeated the Spiders 84-72 in PNC Arena on Nov. 26, 2014.