CINCINNATI – Head Coach Ty Neal today announced the 2017 schedule for his University of Cincinnati baseball program, a 55-game slate that will include 24 games played at home inside Marge Schott Stadium and 14 games played against teams that competed in the 2016 NCAA tournament. The 130th season of UC baseball will get underway February 17 with a two-series road trip before UC’s home campaign begins March 1.
Overall, the Bearcats, who finished fourth in the American Athletic Conference in 2016 with a 13-10-1 league record and finished 26-30-1 overall, will play at least one game against six different NCAA participants, including two Super Regional participants in Louisville and East Carolina, with all but one of those teams (UConn) visiting Marge Schott Stadium. The Bearcats also will play at least one game with three teams that ended the season ranked among the Top 25 nationally, including #5 Louisville (home, March 21), #14 Tulane (home, April 7-9) and #15 ECU (home, April 21-23).
The Bearcats will open 2017 on the road with a pair of three-game series, first facing Northwestern State in Natchitoches, La., February 17-19. Following its series with the Demons, UC will then play three at the College of Charleston (Charleston, S.C.) February 24-26.
When March begins, so does the home the schedule as the Bearcats will play host to 10 games that month starting with a visit from Indiana on March 1. Following three games at Arkansas State (March 3-5) and a visit from Kentucky (March 7), the Bearcats will head to Tennessee for a three-game series at an SEC opponent for the second year in a row after opening 2016 at LSU. On March 14, the Bearcats will travel to Wright State, playing their first of six NCAA qualifiers.
The Bearcats will then play host to a five-game home stand that will include a single game with #5 UofL on March 21. Prior to that game, UC will play host to Miami (Ohio) March 15 before welcoming Northeastern to town March 17-19. Road games at Indiana and Kentucky, along with two at home and one away with Northern Kentucky will get the Bearcats close to the half-way point and into conference play.
The American Athletic Conference slate opens March 31-April 2 as Memphis will visit the Bearcats for their first of two, three-game series in 2017. After a road game at Miami (April 4), UC will welcome #14 Tulane to town for three games (April 7-9) for the Bearcats’ first of two home stands against nationally ranked conference foes. A mid-week road game at Ohio State is slated for April 11 before the Bearcats travel for their first conference road series, a three-game set at USF (April 13-15).
April 18-19 will bring the Bearcats back home as they are set to play host to the ninth edition of the Joe Nuxhall Classic. UC will open play with Xavier on April 18 before playing either Miami or Wright State on April 19. Two days later, #15 ECU will be in town for a three-game set after the Pirates reached the Super Regionals last year.
As April winds down and runs into May, the Bearcats will be on the road for six in a row, starting with three at UConn (April 28-30) before playing three at Memphis (May 5-7). With the two road trips out of the way, the Bearcats return home for their final four home games of 2017 as they first play host to XU on May 9 before hosting UCF for three conference games (May 12-14).
After playing at XU on May 16, the Bearcats will travel to Houston for three games with the Cougars (May 18-20), which will close out the regular season. With the 55-game slate complete, UC will then play in the American Athletic Conference Championship, May 23-28 at Bright House Field in Clearwater, Fla. All eight teams in the league will participate in the postseason event that will be utilized to determine the conference’s automatic bid into the NCAA Championships.