MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Gophers will start the Big Ten men’s basketball season with back-to-back road games against Illinois and Michigan.

The conference schedule was released Wednesday.

Coach Tubby Smith’s team plays Michigan, Penn State, Purdue and Ohio State once each, with the latter two games at home. The Gophers face every other Big Ten opponent twice, accounting for 18 of their 31 regular-season games.

Minnesota takes on rival Wisconsin at Williams Arena on Feb. 9 and in Madison on Feb. 28.

The Gophers play DePaul and two other games as part of the Old Spice Classic in Orlando, Fla., over Thanksgiving weekend. The rest of their nonconference matchups are all at home, including games against regional schools South Dakota State and North Dakota State and major-conference foes Virginia Tech and USC.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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