Northwestern men’s basketball has released its official list of Big Ten opponents, confirming the reported home-and-homes against Minnesota, Penn State, Maryland, Michigan, and Wisconsin we covered earlier in July.
Unlike 2016-17, Northwestern will only play Illinois once, in a home game at Allstate Arena. Northwestern will get Michigan State at home rather than at the Breslin Center, which is a plus. Unfortunately, Northwestern will also have to go on the road to face Purdue and Indiana, two teams which have dominated Northwestern when playing at home in the Collins era. NU’s last road wins against Purdue or Indiana were in 2014, Collins’ first season. The other road games are at Iowa and Rutgers, both of which will likely be improved next season. With the tough home-and-homes against Michigan, Minnesota, and Maryland also on the docket, the conference schedule still looks quite tough.
At “home”, Northwestern will also face Nebraska and a depleted Ohio State. Although Northwestern avoids playing Michigan State twice, the Wildcats still have many difficult matchups to navigate. That’s just a fact of life when you play in a Power 5 conference, however.