The 2018 edition of the annual Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge is the last one in the current contract, and on Thursday the matchups were announced.
The headliner for the event is set for Tuesday, November 27, as reigning Mountain West regular season champion Nevada visits reigning Missouri Valley regular season and tournament champion Loyola University Chicago. The two teams staged a thriller in the Sweet 16 of this year’s NCAA tournament, with the Ramblers winning 69-68 in Atlanta.
Loyola, which finished the season with a 32-6 record, would go on to beat Kansas State in the Elite Eight to earn the program’s first trip to the Final Four since 1963.
In total there are three matchups on November 27, with Boise State visiting Drake and Southern Illinois visiting Colorado State.
Five matchups have been scheduled for Wednesday, November 28, including Valparaiso visiting UNLV and Wyoming visiting Evansville. The final two games of the Challenge will be played Saturday, December 1, with Mountain West tournament champion San Diego State visiting Illinois State and Bradley hosting New Mexico.
Fresno State is the Mountain West team that will not play in the Challenge, as the league has 11 members. Below are the dates and matchups, with tip times and television information to be released at a later date. Last season’s Challenge ended in a 5-5 tie.
Tuesday, November 27
Nevada at Loyola
Boise State at Drake
Southern Illinois at Colorado State
Wednesday, November 28
Valparaiso at UNLV
Northern Iowa at Utah State
Indiana State at San Jose State
Missouri State at Air Force
Wyoming at Evansville
Saturday, December 1
San Diego State at Illinois State
New Mexico at Bradley