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Thompson has assembled a brutal schedule, one that features matchups with UCLA and potentially No. 1 Indiana in the Legends Classic at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., then Tennessee and Texas before the heart of Big East play begins.

“It made sense in July,” he said with a smile. “It’s tough. It’s tough for a young squad. The thought process was, this conference is tough, and you have to be ready for conference play. I think we have the answers, but we have to figure out and learn about ourselves and how is the best way for this group to win, so we have to get tested early.”

Porter passed one test last year, going from relative obscurity to the rigors of the Big East. Now he and the Hoyas are ready to prove that youth will not be a hindrance to another NCAA tournament run.

“Our team is very confident in what we’re going to be able to do this year,” Porter said. “We’re young, and that’s a good thing.”