FSU releases 2013-2014 basketball schedule

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href="">Complete 2013-14 men's basketball schedule
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida State will play host to ACC newcomers Notre Dame and Syracuse for the first time in school history, host North Carolina and travel to play at Pittsburgh, Florida and Minnesota as head coach Leonard Hamilton released the Seminoles' 2013-14 men's basketball schedule. The Seminoles will play at least nine teams who played in last season's NCAA Tournament, may play two of the four Final Four participants and could play as many as 20 of its 30 regular season games against teams who played in a national postseason tournament a year ago.
Florida State's schedule in the new ACC with the additions of Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse could be considered the toughest schedule the Seminoles have ever faced. A total of 15 teams that finished in the top 100 of the RPI a season ago - including No. 1 Duke, No. 4 Miami, No. 8 Florida, No. 10 Syracuse, No. 11 Michigan, No. 19 North Carolina, No. 26 VCU and No. 30 Minnesota are on the Seminoles' schedule. Included on the schedule are three teams that won at least 30 games (Michigan, Duke and Syracuse), eight more who won at least 24 games and six who finished at least second or higher in their conference standings last season.
The Seminoles will play 18 ACC games for the second consecutive season with Notre Dame (January 21) and Syracuse (March 9) on the home schedule and a conference game scheduled at Pittsburgh (February 23) for the first time in school history. The Seminoles will play each of the 14 ACC schools (defending national champion Louisville will join the ACC for the 2014-15 season) at least once with North Carolina (February 19) and defending ACC champion Miami (February 10) coming to play in Tallahassee and the Seminoles traveling to play Duke (January 25) and NC State (January 29) - both NCAA Tournament teams in 2013 - on Tobacco Road.
The Seminoles will open their season at home against Jacksonville (November 8) and play five non-conference home games before ACC competition begins with a home game against Virginia (January 4). Florida State plays five games against teams from the state of Florida with home games coming against Jacksonville and Miami and road contests at UCF (November 13), at Florida (November 29) and at Miami (January 15).
"We are going to challenge ourselves again this season," said head coach Leonard Hamilton. "The ACC is going to be the best conference in the history of college basketball and we are excited that we will play Notre Dame, Syracuse and North Carolina in front our fans in Tallahassee. The aspect that makes our schedule even tougher this season is the high number of quality opponents we will play all season long including in the Puerto Rico Shootout. We have to go to Duke, Pittsburgh, Maryland and Virginia in ACC play and face VCU and possibly Michigan or Kansas State in Puerto Rico. We are going to face tall tasks from opening night through the post season and that is very exciting to our players."
Florida State will once again be a regular on national television with at least 15 games on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU or ESPN News and at least three games televised on Fox Sports. Additionally, the ACC network will carry five games.
Florida State will play at Minnesota in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge (December 3) marking the Seminoles' fifth game against the Gophers in the 16-year history of the challenge for conference supremacy.
The Seminoles will play three games in the Puerto Rico Shootout with all three coming at the Roberto Clemente Coliseo in San Juan, Puerto Rico (November 21, 22 and 24). Florida State will begin the tournament against NCAA Tournament participant VCU in the first meeting between the two teams since the Sweet 16 of the 2011 NCAA Tournament and will play either Long Beach State or 2013 national runner-up Michigan in the second round. The Seminoles will then face Charlotte, Georgetown, Kansas State or Northeastern in the final round of the event.
The Seminoles are looking to win an in-season tournament championship for the third consecutive season after having won the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic during the 2012-13 season and ACC Tournament in 2012.
The expanded ACC Tournament is March 12-16 at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C. - with the event beginning on Wednesday (March 12) for the first time in league history because of the recent expansion additions of Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse and the future addition of Louisville. Three games will be played on Wednesday, four on Thursday and Friday with the semifinals played on Saturday and the championship finals on Sunday.
"Every team in the ACC has improved itself," said Hamilton. "Every game we play is going to be exciting and with the addition of the new members of the ACC our fans are going to want to get the best seats to see the best teams in the best conference in Tallahassee."
The Seminoles return four starters to their 2013-14 team including senior All-American candidate Okaro White (12.4 ppg and a team-leading 5.9 rpg), point guard Devon Bookert (6.5 ppg and 2.4 apg) and guard Aaron Thomas (6.0 ppg and 2.4 rpg) to their starting line-up. Florida State finished the 2012-13 season with an 18-16 record and played in the NIT marking its school-record eighth consecutive postseason tournament appearance. Senior Ian Miller, who averaged 5.3 points per game as a junior, will also return healthy after being hampered by a foot injury during his junior season.
Each of its nine ACC games are included in the Seminoles' season ticket package. Season tickets are on sale now for the 2013-14 season. Fans can visit or call the ticket office at 888-FSU-NOLE to order tickets.