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Men's basketball schedule features three tournaments

October 1, 2007
Keno Davis
Keno Davis

For the second year, the Drake men's basketball team will play in a school record tying three regular-season tournaments to highlight a 30-game schedule for the upcoming 2007-08 season.

The Bulldogs, under first-year head coach Keno Davis, will play eight games against teams which advanced to 2007 post-season play.

Drake will play 17 home games, including 15 regular-season contests. The Bulldogs will host Central College in an Oct. 31 exhibition game, followed by a Nov. 3 home exhibition game with Southwest Minn. State.

Drake opens its 102nd season of intercollegiate basketball venturing to Moraga, Calif., to play UC-San Diego Nov. 9 in the opening round of the Saint Mary's Tip-Off Classic. The Bulldogs will face host Saint Mary's on Nov. 10.

Drake opens the regular home season entertaining Cornell College. After a nonconference road test at Wisconsin-Milwaukee Nov. 24, Drake will play five straight home games.

The Bulldogs will host the inaugural Iowa Realty Invitational, meeting North Carolina Central in the first round on Nov. 30. The tournament field also includes Duquesne and Cal State-Northridge.

After renewing the oldest college basketball rivalry in the state of Iowa by playing Iowa State for the 166th time Dec. 5 at the Drake Knapp Center, Drake will host the third annual Drake Regency Challenge presented by Hy-Vee on Dec. 7-8.

The Bulldogs play Chicago State in the first round, while Jackson State squares off with Texas-Pan American in the other matchup.

The Bulldogs travel to Iowa Dec. 14 before opening the Missouri Valley Conference season on the road for the third straight year by playing at Wichita State on Dec. 29.

The MVC schedule features four games against Creighton and Southern Illinois which competed in the 2007 NCAA Tournament. Drake also will play four contests against Bradley and Missouri State which also played in the 2007 NIT.

The Bulldogs meet Southern Illinois, which advanced to the semifinal round of the 2007 NCAA West Regional, in its MVC home opener Jan. 2.

Drake will play a road game in the sixth annual O'Reilly ESPNU BracketBuster series Feb. 22-23. The Bracket Buster pairings will be announced in early February.

The four-day 10-team State Farm MVC Tournament will begin on Thursday, March 6 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Mo., and conclude with a championship on March 9.

Drake won two tournaments in 2006-07, capturing the Drake Regency Challenge as well as the Sun Bowl Tournament, while finishing fifth in the Top of the World Classic in Anchorage, Alaska.

Drake also played in three regular season tournaments in 1986-87: the Hawaii Pacific Tournament, the Lobo Invitational in Albuquerque, N.M., and the Heritage Drake Classic.

Drake has seven returning letter winners, including two starters back from last year's team which posted a 17-15 record. Guard Josh Young, from Lawton, Okla., who scored more points than any freshman in the Missouri Valley Conference last year, and senior forward Klayton Korver, from Pella, Iowa, head the returning veterans.

Young, who averaged 10.7 points, was named to the 2007 MVC All-Newcomer Team. Korver averaged 9.3 points last year and ranks fourth on the Drake career three-point basket list at 155.

Season tickets are on sale at the Drake Athletic Ticket Office by calling 515-271-DOGS. Fans also can order season tickets online.

For the complete 2007-08 schedule go to the Web site.