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UCF MBB to Host Auburn This Season

Tigers HC Bruce Pearl announced the matchup Thursday

NCAA Basketball: Tennessee at Auburn John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

The UCF Knights just continue to add big-name programs to their non-conference schedule.

The latest inclusion is a home game against the Auburn Tigers, according to Auburn’s head coach Bruce Pearl. He talked Thursday about his team’s early-season schedule, which includes a tournament in Fort Myers to open the season.

Then here is the important part for UCF fans, per Jordan D. Hill of the Opelika-Auburn News:

“In addition to the Fort Myers tournament, Pearl announced Auburn will play UCF in Orlando following that opening weekend of action.”

The game’s date wasn’t announced*, but a source tells Black and Gold Banneret that the Tigers will release their full 2020-21 schedule Friday.

*Update: Pearl said in a separate interview Thursday that the game is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 30 (You can hear his comments about the game at around the 1:53:00 mark). That's two days after UCF's season-opener at home versus Oklahoma on Nov. 28.

It’s another solid get for the Knights, who are also slated to host Oklahoma to begin the season, face Florida State on Dec. 19 in Tallahassee and visit the Michigan Wolverines.

Auburn went 25-6 overall last season, 12-6 in the SEC. They were ranked No. 20 in the final Associated Press Poll, and it was the Tigers’ third straight winning season in conference under Pearl. In 2019, Auburn won the SEC Tournament and reached its first-ever Final Four.

This year’s edition of the Tigers is basically starting from scratch as the returning roster scored a combined 14.3 points per game in 2019-20. They will have to replace their entire starting lineup, but Sharife Cooper, a 6-foot freshman point guard, might be the next one-and-done player to come out of The Plains. He was a top-25 recruit in the class of 2020.