The 2020-21 season was harsh on the Owls, who finished just 5-11 overall, with a 4-10 conference record, and just a 3-5 record inside the Liacouras Center. In a season filled with postponements and cancelations, it ended in heartbreaking fashion, a narrow 73-71 loss to the South Florida Bulls in the first round of the AAC Tournament.
The Owls will look to avenge last season, as the AAC released its full 2021-22 men’s basketball schedule on Thursday, completing the Owls’ 2021 regular-season schedule. The schedule will consist of 31 games, 13 of which are of the non-conference variety, which includes the Shriners Children’s Charleston Classic.
The regular season will begin at home for the Owls, as they host the Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks on November 10th, at the Liacouras Center. This will be followed by a second consecutive home game vs USC on the 13th. After the mini homestand, the Owls will travel to South Carolina to take on Clemson in the opener of the aforementioned Charleston Classic on November 18th. Following a November 27th bout with the Blue Hens of Delaware, the Big 5 schedule opens with consecutive home games vs LaSalle and Penn, on December 1st & 4th, respectively.
Head Coach Aaron Mckie is entering his 3rd season as the bench boss for the Temple Owls. Coming into 2021, Mckie has a combined record of 19-28, with a 10-22 conference record. Despite his early shortcomings on North Broad, Coach Mckie shows optimism in his young team following the schedule release,
“We are really happy with the balance of this schedule as it features non-conference games against USC and Vanderbilt. A challenging tournament in Charleston and a local flavor with our Big Five rivals and area teams like Delaware and Drexel is the perfect blend to prepare our program for success this season.”
The Big 5 portion of the schedule will wrap up with road games at Saint Joseph’s and the Big East powerhouse Villanova, on December 11th and 29th, respectively. The conference portion of the schedule begins at home on December 15th, as the Owls will host the UCF Golden Knights. The reigning AAC Tournament Champions, the Houston Cougars come into town on January 2nd, to bring in 2022. The Owls will travel to Houston for the penultimate game of the regular season on March 3rd.
The home and regular-season finale will take place March 6th, as the Owls host the South Florida Bulls, who as previously mentioned ended the Owls 2020-21 campaign. Before their tournament matchup, the two teams split their regular-season contests last year, with the road team winning each game.
Some other notable AAC matchups are as follows (some game times still TBD):
- vs Wichita State (regular season champions) 1/19/22
- @ USF 1/22/22 – 12pm
- vs Cincinnati 1/25/22 – 7pm
- @ SMU 2/16/22 – 9pm
- @ Memphis 2/24/22 – 7pm
Fourteen of the Owls’ 31 games will be nationally televised, with 13 of them being broadcast on the ESPN family of channels. The 2022 AAC Championship Tournament will take place in Fort Worth, Texas at the Dickies Arena from March 10-13th.