On Monday afternoon, the ACC released its 2016-17 basketball schedule for conference play. It didn’t take long for Louisville basketball head coach Rick Pitino to release a statement stating his displeasure with his team’s schedule.
Pitino was especially irked by the quick turnarounds and multiple road trips that give his team little rest.
The schedule is also among the most difficult in recent memory.
“Our schedule as planned is one of the toughest any team could encounter,” Pitino said in a statement. “The league travel is a bit unfair with a 9 p.m. home game on Thursday, followed by a 2 p.m. game at Florida State on Saturday. there’s also a road game on Saturday afternoon at Boston College, then next up traveling to Virginia on Monday. That’s not mentioning our league opening game at home against Virginia sandwiched between Kentucky and Indiana, all followed with a game at Notre Dame. But that’s the ACC. The Battle 4 Atlantis, Purdue and at Grand Canyon — psas the pepto bismol.”
After openly criticizing the schedule, Pitino took a moment to praise his team.
“Our saving grace is the attitude and work ethic of this team” he noted. “We may be unproven and a bit inexperienced, but this group is talented and tenacious. It should be a fun season.”
You can see the full Louisville basketball schedule below:
— Kenny Klein (@KKcards) September 12, 2016
It’s certainly a loaded schedule and Pitino has every right to complain, but as long as his team stays focused and can perform at a high level throughout the regular season, they will be battle tested when the NCAA Tournament rolls around and that could prepare them to make a big splash.
Photo Credit: Louisville Athletics