North Carolina basketball schedule 2021-22: Rating the Tar Heels’ hardest nonconference video games

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North Carolina launched its full nonconference schedule for the 2021-22 season Tuesday, and it options a number of showcase alternatives for first-year coach Hubert Davis. The Tar Heels open with a trio of house contests towards lower-tier foes as they ease right into a slate that may characteristic 4 video games towards well-regarded energy convention opposition.

UNC will take part within the Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event in Uncasville, Connecticut, in addition to the ACC-Massive Ten Problem and CBS Sports activities Traditional. On the entire, the nonconference schedule is a bit much less stiff than what North Carolina confronted within the 2019-20 season when it confronted 4 top-15 groups in non-ACC play along with impartial web site video games towards Michigan and UCLA.

Nevertheless, this system is in a state of transition, and the slate ought to permit the Tar Heels to generate some momentum amid the transition to Davis’ tenure as coach following Roy Williams’ retirement. 

This is a take a look at UNC’s full 2021 nonconference schedule with the ACC schedule to be introduced at a later date:

Nov. 9: Loyola (Md.)
Nov. 12: Brown
Nov. 16: at Faculty of Charleston
Nov. 20: vs. Purdue (Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event in Uncasville, Connecticut)
Nov. 21: vs. Tennessee or Villanova (Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event in Uncasville, Connecticut)
Nov. 23: UNC Asheville
Dec. 1: Michigan (ACC-Massive Ten Problem)
Dec. 11: Elon
Dec. 14: Furman
Dec. 18: vs. UCLA (CBS Sports activities Traditional)
Dec. 21: Appalachian State

Let’s dissect the schedule extra carefully by rating the Tar Heels’ 5 most difficult non-conference video games — ranked countdown fashion.

5. Appalachian State

Dec. 21 at Dean E. Smith Middle in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

2020-21 file: 17-12

Coach: Dustin Kerns 

Appalachian State made its first NCAA Event since 2000 final season by profitable 4 straight video games within the Solar Belt Event. The Mountaineers misplaced in a First 4 recreation to Norfolk State however return almost each key contributor from that staff and will likely be motivated to play the in-state large canine. With UNC gamers gearing up for a Christmas break, this could possibly be a lure recreation.

4. Tennessee or Villanova 

Nov. 21 Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event in Uncasville, Connecticut

The outcomes of the day prior to this’s motion will decided who UNC faces within the second day of the Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event, nevertheless it’s assured to be a difficult matchup. Villanova misplaced main scorer Jeremiah Robinson-Earl to the NBA Draft however brings again a lot of the remainder of its core, together with a few tremendous seniors in Jermaine Samuels and Collin Gillespie. Tennessee is retooling a bit, however the Volunteers are bringing within the nation’s No. 3 recruiting class and are anticipated to contend for the SEC crown.

3. Purdue

Nov. 20 Basketball Corridor of Fame Tip-Off Event in Uncasville, Connecticut

2020-21 file: 18-10

Coach: Matt Painter

Purdue flopped within the 2021 postseason with first-round exits from the Massive Ten and NCAA Tournaments, however the Boilermakers deliver again almost everybody and needs to be among the many favorites to win the Massive Ten. This will likely be UNC’s first recreation towards an influence convention foe, and Purdue’s chemistry and cohesion could possibly be a troublesome matchup for a remixed Tar Heels’ squad that may nonetheless be jelling.

2. Michigan

Dec. 1 at Dean E. Smith Middle in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

2020-21 file: 23-5

Coach: Juwan Howard

Michigan is establishing itself as essentially the most highly effective program within the Massive Ten as Juwan Howard enters his third season as coach. The Wolverines are contemporary off touchdown a No. 1 seed within the NCAA Event and simply introduced within the nation’s prime recruiting class. With star middle Hunter Dickinson and tremendous senior guard Eli Brooks again, the mix of continuity and incoming expertise ought to make the Wolverines a pressure once more.

1. UCLA

Dec. 18 CBS Sports activities Traditional at location TBA

2020-21 file: 22-10

Coach: Mick Cronin

Count on the Bruins to be favored on this neutral-site showdown as they enter the season with nationwide title aspirations following their 2021 Last 4 run. UCLA brings almost everybody again from that squad. Whereas this recreation appears to be like just like the most-challenging on UNC’s non convention slate, it additionally brings a golden alternative. If the Tar Heels can knock off a top-10 staff on Dec. 18, will probably be an enormous increase to its resume and an amazing momentum builder because the ACC grind approaches.

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