Hawaii trip, visit by Auburn highlight CCU hoops slate

ccuhoops-22After directing Coastal Carolina to back-to-back Big South Tournament championships and NCAA Tournament appearances, Coastal Carolina men’s basketball coach Cliff Ellis has announced his program’s schedule for the 2015-16 season. The schedule for the two-time defending champion Chanticleers is highlighted by 14 home games, a trip to Hawai’i’s Outrigger Resorts Rainbow Classic and a visit to The HTC Center by SEC member Auburn.

Coastal will play 18 Big South Conference games this season. The Chanticleers will have home-and-home series with eight teams, while playing Liberty (home only) and Longwood (away only) once each. Last year, Coastal was 24-10 overall and posted a 12-6 conference mark on the way to winning the VisitMyrtleBeach.com Big South Conference Tournament. By virtue of their championship game victory, the Chants advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season for the first time in program history.

The Chanticleers tip off the season Fri., Nov. 13, against Nevada in the opening game of the Outrigger Resorts Rainbow Classic. Coastal concludes the event Sun., Nov. 15, facing the host Rainbow Warriors. Upon returning from the Hawai’i, Coastal will host Grace Bible College (Nov. 18) in its home opener followed by Piedmont International (Nov. 21) before making the short trip down U.S. Route 17 to face the College of Charleston on Nov. 24.

The Chants play their first Big South game of the season at Campbell (Nov. 28), then return home to host Bruce Pearl and the Auburn Tigers (Dec. 2) before hosting Radford on Dec. 6. The Auburn game will feature coaches with a combined 17 NCAA Tournament appearances and more than 1,200 career wins.

Coastal then finishes its non-conference slate with a home game against North Carolina Wesleyan (Dec. 9) and Alabama State (Dec. 20) along with road contests at SoCon member Wofford (Dec. 14) and ACC member Wake Forest (Dec. 18). After a 10-day break for the Christmas holiday, the Chanticleers close the 2015 calendar year with a New Year’s Eve game at Gardner-Webb.

Coastal’s January games at The HTC Center include Winthrop (Jan. 2), Liberty (Jan. 6), Presbyterian College (Jan. 14), UNC Asheville (Jan. 27) and Campbell (Jan. 30). The Chants’ February home Big South games are High Point (Feb. 11), Gardner-Webb (Feb. 13) and Charleston Southern (Feb. 25). Coastal concludes its regular season of play at UNC Asheville on Sat., Feb. 27.

For the fourth consecutive year the VistiMyrtleBeach.com Big South Basketball Championship is scheduled to be hosted at The HTC Center on the Chanticleers’ campus. The men’s first round games will be held March 3, followed by quarterfinals on March 4, semifinals on March 5 and the championship game on March 6. The winner advances to the NCAA Tournament, which begins March 15.

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