Sept. 8, 2010
With the announcement of the tournament field and the opening-round games of the Waikiki Beach Marriott Rainbow Wahine Showdown, the Washington State University women's basketball team now has 10 nonconference games cemented on its 2010-11 schedule, and each of those 10 opponents appeared in the postseason following the 2009-10 regular season.
After hosting Lewis-Clark State in an exhibition game (Nov. 7; 1 p.m.), the Cougars open their 2010-11 regular season with a three-game road trip. WSU will play at Saint Mary's (Nov. 12), at UC Davis (Nov. 14) and at Portland (Nov. 18). The Gaels and Aggies each played in the Women's National Invitation Tournament following last year's regular season, while the Pilots played in the inaugural Women's Basketball Invitational.
WSU will kick off its home schedule with Nebraska (Nov. 22; 7 p.m.), the first of five nonconference opponents on the 2010-11 schedule to appear in the 2010 NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament. The Huskers were one of four No. 1 seeds last year, and made it to the Sweet Sixteen.
The Cougars will then head to Honolulu, Hawaii, to play three games in three days in a Thanksgiving tournament hosted by Hawaii. WSU will open the Rainbow Wahine Showdown with North Carolina, another NCAA Tournament team from 2009-10, and will then play two more games against any combination of the following teams: Hawaii, North Carolina Central, Illinois, Gonzaga, Long Beach State and Mississippi.
WSU returns to Beasley Coliseum for back-to-back home games following the tournament, squaring off against Nevada (Dec. 5; 1 p.m.) and South Dakota State (Dec. 7; 7 p.m.) to close out the home nonconference portion of its schedule. The Wolf Pack played in the WNIT last season, while the Jackrabbits played in the NCAA Tournament.
The Cougars close their nonconference slate with another three-game road trip, meeting Gonzaga (Dec. 11), Wyoming (Dec. 18) and San Diego State (Dec. 21) on their respective home courts. Both the Zags and Aztecs played in the NCAA Tournament last season, and each reached the Sweet Sixteen. The Cowgirls reached Round Three of the WNIT.
The 12 nonconference games for the Cougars are the most since the Pacific-10 Conference added women's basketball in 1986-87.