One of the many things that landed in my mailbox this afternoon was an updated preseason prospectus from Longwood, which included what looks like a full schedule that is nevertheless subject to change.
And if you didn’t think that made me just a little happier on a hot summer day, well, you don’t know me very well.
While it doesn’t look like the schedule is listed on the Lancers’ website, it was still easy to copy-and-paste it into here. And so it’s listed below, along with a breakdown as part of a look at every school in Maryland, D.C. and Virginia as the schedules are released:
Nov. 14, Virginia-Wise; Nov. 16, Norfolk State; Nov. 18, Gardner-Webb; Nov. 20, at West Virginia; Nov. 22, at Maryland-Eastern Shore; Nov. 24, at Kentucky; Nov. 28, vs. Southeast Missouri State in Las Vegas; Nov. 29, vs. Delaware State or Oakland in Las Vegas
Dec. 3, James Madison; Dec. 14, at Virginia Tech; Dec. 17, at Virginia; Dec. 20, Virginia Intermont; Dec. 28, at Lehigh; Dec. 30, at Navy
Jan. 3, George Washington; Jan. 6, at Florida; Jan. 12, Chicago State; Jan. 17, Savannah State; Jan. 21, Southern Virginia; Jan. 24, NJIT; Jan. 31, Columbia Union
Feb. 4, Maryland-Eastern Shore; Feb. 7, at Savannah State; Feb. 11, Texas-Pan American; Feb. 14, at Texas-Pan American; Feb. 16, at Chicago State; Feb. 21, Colgate; Feb. 23, at High Point; Feb. 25, North Carolina Central; Feb. 28, at North Carolina Central
March 4, at NJIT
They’ll miss: Four-year starter Lamar Barrett, who averaged 9.3 points and 5.2 rebounds last season.
They’re adding: Freshman guard Martiz Washington, who rolled up 18.4 points, 5.4 assists, 4.6 steals and 4.5 rebounds at the Christchurch (Va.) School as a senior.
Home/road/neutral schedule split: 15/14/2, a superb home/road balance for returning senior Kirk Williams (16.9 ppg).
Best team visiting Farmville: It might just be Colgate; the Raiders went 18-14 last year in the very even Patriot League.
Best home game subplot: OK, maybe this isn’t the best subplot from Longwood’s perspective. Woeful NJIT of 0-29 fame were dealt two of their losses in February by Longwood. The Highlanders have two more games with the Lancers this year, including the Jan. 24 visit to Willett Hall.
Funny seeing you here: George Washington has defeated the Lancers in Foggy Bottom in back-to-back years. On Jan. 3, the Colonials will become the first Atlantic 10 team to visit Farmville in Longwood’s five seasons as a Division I program.
Best road venue: It’s hard to argue with selecting the Nov. 24 visit to Rupp Arena to play Kentucky. Sure, there is a trip to Florida, but this is a chance to play in Big Blue Nation.
Best showcase: A chance to play at a vaunted in-state school is pretty cool. But which one? Since the Lancers will be making a trip to Charlottesville for the fourth straight year, let’s go with the Dec. 14 game at Virginia Tech. It’s Longwood’s first trip to the Cassell.
Best opponent: If Joe Alexander stuck around, chances are it would have been West Virginia. It might still be, but the nod at this stage goes to the Jan. 6 trek to Florida.
New to the schedule: Gardner-Webb, West Virginia, Maryland-Eastern Shore, Kentucky, Virginia Tech, Lehigh, Florida, Chicago State, Columbia Union, Texas-Pan American, Colgate and North Carolina Central. It would appear the Lancers have not played any of these schools since moving to Division I.
Pivotal stretch: Those eight games in 16 days to start the season look pretty brutal. Still, the Lancers play seven of eight at home between Jan. 12 and Feb. 11, mostly against fellow independents and non-Division I opponents. It’s the most obvious opportunity for Longwood to get on a roll.
—- Patrick Stevens