By Barca Blog - At the SEC's annual business meetings in May, commissioner Mike Slive challenged league coaches to schedule tougher non-conference opponents after only three teams made it to the NCAA Tournament last season -- its lowest total since 1990.
Slive has to be pleased with Vanderbilt's upcoming slate, which features a variety of opponents including Missouri, Western Kentucky, St. Mary's, Illinois, Mercer and Southern Miss. The Commodores will also take a trip to Hawaii for the 2009 EA Sports Maui Invitational to face Cincinnati in the opener, either Maryland or Chaminade on day two, and a third game to be determined.
"We feel like our non-conference schedule this year will be as strong as any we have had since we have been here," said head coach Kevin Stallings. "We think this will be more than enough to prepare us for the rigors of the SEC schedule. Hopefully, it will show the NCAA Selection Committee that we made a definite effort to play a challenging schedule."
You can view the complete non-conference schedule here. Also, take a look at the entire bracket for the Maui Invitational.