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Breaking down the Summit League schedule

Conference play begins on December 30

NCAA Basketball: Air Force at Denver Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Summit League announced the schedule for the conference play portion of the season on Thursday.

With IUPUI’s departure to the Horizon League, the conference is left with eight teams. The league is maintaining its regular double round-robin format, but will only play 14 games each instead of 16 games in previous years.

The complete schedule can be found here.

A few highlights...

Title Rematch

South Dakota State and Omaha will have their first Summit League Championship rematch early in the season on January 6. It’ll be Omaha’s league opener as well as their home opener, while South Dakota State will have a matchup with North Dakota State to kick off their season.

Points!

Fort Wayne and Omaha played one of the most exciting games in all of college basketball last year in the Mastodons’ 108-101 overtime victory. This year, the two teams meet on January 13 and February 10. If you like a blistering pace, plenty of points and minimal defense, then these games should be appointment viewing.

Battle for the Mount Rushmore State

South Dakota was one of the biggest surprises in the league last year when they took home the regular season title. South Dakota State played spoiler when they bounced the Coyotes from the conference tournament and proceeded to take home the automatic bid. The in-state rivals meet for the first time on January 24, and during the last week of the season on February 22. Both teams should be in contention again for the league crown, so these matchups will be pivotal.

The Dauminator returns

Certified bucket getter and burly boy Mike Daum will bring his plethora of pump fakes and old man at the YMCA moves to Fort Wayne for the last game of the season. The significance of that? Well, Daum put up 51 points and 15 rebounds on the Mastodons last season. Another monster performance could be in the works as both teams will look to solidify their conference tournament positions.