HUNTINGTON - Marshall basketball fans can start penciling in game nights on their winter calendars.
The Thundering Herd men's basketball program finalized its 2019-20 schedule recently and announced the slate of games on Wednesday.
Marshall starts the season with four of its first five games at Cam Henderson Center and also has a pair of top-tier road games on its non-conference schedule with trips to Notre Dame (Nov. 15) and Florida (Nov. 29).
One other highlight to the non-conference schedule comes on Dec. 29 when Marshall takes on Duquesne, which features Huntington native Tavian Dunn-Martin, at the Cleveland Classic at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland. That game is part of a doubleheader that also features West Virginia taking on Ohio State.
Much like the connection with Dunn-Martin at Duquesne, there are several games that feature local ties on the home non-conference slate.
On Dec. 4, Akron visits Cam Henderson Center for a contest in which Akron assistant coach Rob Fulford will return to the Tri-State. Fulford led Huntington Prep's program in its infancy from 2009 to 2014. Both Fulford and Marshall head coach Dan D'Antoni are natives of Mullens, West Virginia.
Then, on Dec. 19, former Marshall point guard A.W. Hamilton returns to Huntington for the first time as a head coach when he brings his Eastern Kentucky Colonels into the Cam Henderson Center. Hamilton, who was a three-year captain for Marshall from 2002-05, ranks in the top-10 in school history in assists and in the top-20 in steals. He was also a graduate assistant for the Herd in the 2005-06 season.
Rivalries also dot the schedule with Marshall playing a home-and-home season series with Toledo, who comes to Huntington on Nov. 10 before getting the return trip from the Herd on Dec. 8.
The Notre Dame contest is part of the Men Against Breast Cancer (MABC) Invitational, which features several teams. In addition to the game at Notre Dame, Marshall's home non-conference games against Robert Morris (Nov. 7), Toledo (Nov. 10) and Howard (Nov. 21) are part of the MABC Invitational.
Marshall also has a home game with College of Charleston on Nov. 19 and a road contest at Northern Iowa (Dec. 22) as part of its 2019-20 non-conference slate.
The conference portion of the 2019-20 season starts at Cam Henderson Center with home games against Rice (Jan. 2) and North Texas (Jan. 4) on the first weekend of 2020.
There is also a three-game home swing in a five-day stretch, starting with a home weekend with Charlotte and Old Dominion that precedes a rare Monday contest with Western Kentucky on Jan. 22 that precedes a three-game road swing in conference play, which also starts with the Hilltoppers.
Conference USA's Bonus Play format is back for the 2019-20 season. Bonus Play starts on Feb. 22 and wraps up with the end of the regular season on March 7.
The Herd's 2019-20 season will feature new leadership on the court after Jon Elmore, the program's all-time leader in scoring and assists, and C.J. Burks, who also ended his career as a top-5 scorer in program history, graduated following the team's 2018-19 run that ended with a CIT Championship.
Sophomore Taevion Kinsey returns as a headliner for the group after a breakout freshman season while junior forward Jannson Williams and junior guard Jarrod West also bring a wealth of experience to the lineup.
Marshall's post presence gets a boost with the return of Iran Bennett and the addition of 7-footer Goran Miladinovic, a native of Montenegro who is one of several key newcomers, along with 6-foot-7 Serbian guard Marko Sarenac and 6-foot-6 forward Dajour Rucker from Virginia Beach, Virginia.
2019-20 Marshall men’s basketball schedule
Oct. 29 Glenville State**
Nov. 2 Rio Grande**
Nov. 7 Robert Morris
Nov. 10 Toledo
Nov. 15 at Notre Dame
Nov. 19 College of Charleston
Nov. 21 Howard
Nov. 29 at Florida
Dec. 4 Akron
Dec. 8 at Toledo
Dec. 11 Bluefield State
Dec. 16 at Morehead State
Dec. 19 Eastern Kentucky
Dec. 22 at Northern Iowa
Dec. 29 Duquesne#
Jan. 2 Rice
Jan. 4 North Texas
Jan. 9 at Middle Tennessee
Jan. 11 at UAB
Jan. 16 Charlotte
Jan. 18 Old Dominion
Jan. 22 Western Kentucky
Jan. 25 at Western Kentucky
Jan. 30 at FIU
Feb. 1 at Florida Atlantic
Feb. 6 Southern Miss
Feb. 8 Louisiana Tech
Feb. 13 at UTSA
Feb. 15 at UTEP
Feb. 22 C-USA Bonus Play
Feb. 27 C-USA Bonus Play
March 1 C-USA Bonus Play
March 4 C-USA Bonus Play
March 7 C-USA Bonus Play
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