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    Providence, R.I. (July 7, 2005) - The BIG EAST Conference has announced the league opponents for each of its men's basketball teams for the 2005-06 regular season.

    The BIG EAST consists of 16 teams for 2005-06. Each squad will play a 16-game conference schedule. Teams will meet 10 opponents once and three opponents twice (home and away). Each team will not play two opponents.

    The decisions regarding repeat opponents are based on natural interest, geography, rivalries and television contractual obligations. If a team does not play a particular opponent this season, that matchup will be made in 2006-07.

    The BIG EAST office compiles the conference schedule. Each school announces its full schedule, when it is completed, at its discretion.

    Louisville's BIG EAST Opponents for 2005-06

    Home Games — Cincinnati, Connecticut, DePaul, Marquette, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, South Florida, Villanova

    Away Games — Cincinnati, Connecticut, Providence, Rutgers, St. Johns, Syracuse, Villanova, West Virginia

    "We've got to have an unbelievable summer and fall as a team to prepare for such a difficult conference schedule," said U of L Coach Rick Pitino. "It's certainly the most challenging conference schedule I've ever faced as a coach."

    Two of the Cards' three league opponents it faces twice this season -- Connecticut (No. 5) and Villanova (No. 10) -- are preseason top ten picks by CBS Sportsline, with West Virginia (15th) and Syracuse (21st) also among the the web site's top 25. Twelve of the Cards' 16 league games will be against teams that reached either the NCAA Tournament or NIT last season.

    U of L's non-conference schedule is incomplete. A completed schedule, including dates and times for the BIG EAST games, is expected in early September.

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