Kyle Smith continues to build Columbia into Ivy League contender, as evidenced by schedule that sees Lions play five postseason teams from last season. (Photo courtesy of Columbia University)
Fresh off an appearance in the CollegeInsider.com tournament that served as the first postseason berth in program history in 46 years, Columbia University returns to the hardwood intent on taking down Ivy League giant Harvard while at the same time focused on furthering their renaissance under head coach Kyle Smith.
"This schedule gives us some great opportunities early on, and I am very happy about the quality of our opponents as a whole," Smith said as his Lions will open the fifth year of his regime as the first visiting team to invade the newly renovated Stony Brook Arena when Columbia travels to Long Island to face Stony Brook on November 14 as part of an unconventional nonconference home-and-home series. Steve Pikiell and the Seawolves will ring in 2015 for the second leg, with the January opener for both sides taking place on the sixth day of the calendar year inside Levien Gym.
Columbia's home opener takes place on November 18, when the Lions entertain Wagner before a trip to Lehigh (November 23) precedes a four-game homestand featuring Fairleigh Dickinson, (November 25) reigning Patriot League champion American, (November 29) Loyola (December 2) and Bucknell on December 6. Games against both of the participants in last season's national championship game bookend Hofstra's December 20 visit to Manhattan, as Columbia travels to Kentucky on the 10th of December, with a matchup against national champion Connecticut slated for the 22nd, the Lions' final contest before the Christmas holiday.
A home game against Colgate (December 28) and road tilt at St. Francis Brooklyn (December 30) precede the aforementioned second game against Stony Brook. The Lions' last non-league tuneup will be a January 10 skirmish against NAIA program Central Penn before starting the "14-game tournament" in Ithaca on January 17 against archrival Cornell.
A return match with the Big Red one week later starts a five-game homestand before the traditional Friday/Saturday schedule kicks in for the Ivy League. Columbia's next four games come against Yale, (January 30) Brown, (January 31) Princeton (February 6) and Penn, (February 7) with four straight on the road to follow against Harvard, (February 13) Dartmouth, (February 14) Brown (February 20) and Yale on February 21. Dartmouth (February 27) and Harvard (February 28) serve as the Lions' final homestand prior to closing the season at Penn on March 6th and Princeton the following day.
***Click here for Columbia's schedule release, featuring quotes from head coach Kyle Smith.***