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UConn WBB Weekly: Breaking down the Huskies’ non-conference schedule

Who are the Huskies’ toughest opponents this year?

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: FEB 27 Women’s UConn at Butler Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

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Breaking down the Huskies’ non-conference schedule

The first part of UConn women’s basketball’s 2021-22 schedule is out after the Huskies released their slate of non-conference games. While there were no surprises — all the opponents had already been announced — now there are dates to go with each matchup.

With 45 days until UConn’s exhibition with Fort Hays State and 52 days until the regular season officially begins on Nov. 14 against Arkansas, here’s how the Huskies’ non-conference schedule breaks down by the numbers:

7 — UConn will play seven teams that made the NCAA Tournament in 2021. Of that group, one (South Carolina) made the Final Four, one (Louisville) reached the Elite Eight and two (Georgia Tech and Oregon) played in the Sweet Sixteen.

23 — UConn’s shortest non-conference road trip will be to Mohegan Sun Arena, just 23 miles from Storrs as the crow flies. The Huskies will take on Louisville in the Basketball Hall of Fame Showcase on Dec. 19 at the casino. Fun fact: Mohegan Sun Arena is just one mile further away from UConn’s campus than the XL Center, the Huskies’ second home arena.

2,541 — UConn’s longest road trip will be a cross-country trek to Oregon, 2,541 miles away. This is the farthest the Huskies will travel for a regular-season game since 2018-19 when they went to Cal — 2,636 miles away.

5,459 — The total number of miles UConn will travel during its non-conference slate.

51 — UConn and Notre Dame have met 51 times, the most of any team on the non-conference schedule. The majority of these meetings came between 1996-2013, when the Fighting Irish were members of the old Big East. Since the break-up of the conference, the two teams have faced off 10 times — four of which came in the Final Four.

2 — While UConn has played Notre Dame more than anyone else on the non-conference slate, the Huskies have only played three teams twice — Arkansas, Georgia Tech, and Minnesota — tied for the fewest.

5 — UConn’s five neutral site games are the most since the 2014-15 season when it played three games in the Gulf Coast Showcase in Estero, Florida, one game in the Hall of Fame Challenge at Mohegan Sun, and one game in the Maggie Dixon Classic at Madison Square Garden. The Huskies also hosted DePaul at Webster Bank Arena that season, though that went into the books as a home game.

3 — Three of UConn’s non-conference games will come after the new year. This has been a trend for the Huskies as a way to break up the monotony of conference play while also giving the team a few more challenges before the postseason.

2 — An (almost) annual tradition for UConn is a homecoming game for its seniors. This year, the Huskies will travel to Oregon for Evina Westbrook and Georgia Tech for Olivia Nelson-Ododa. Before the pandemic, UConn was scheduled to play at Little Rock for Christyn Williams, though that got canned after the team’s trip to Arkansas last season.

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