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Tuesday, August 31, 2021

NKU finalizes men's basketball schedule, features Indiana and EKU

Marques Warrick.

The 2021-22 Northern Kentucky men’s basketball nonconference schedule is complete. In addition to the previously announced matchups against UNC Greensboro, Eastern Michigan, Western Illinois and Canisius at home and the road game at DePaul, NKU has added away contests at Eastern Kentucky and Indiana as well as home regular-season contests versus Wheeling and Alice Lloyd to its docket.

The regular-season opens against Wheeling on Tuesday, Nov. 9, when the Norse welcome the Cardinals to BB&T Arena. NKU remains home for its next three contests as well. Reigning SoCon regular-season and tournament champion and 2021 NCAA Tournament participant UNC Greensboro comes to Highland Heights on Nov. 12. Northern Kentucky then hosts its first two games of the Blue Demon Classic against Eastern Michigan (Nov. 18) and Western Illinois (Nov. 22) before heading to Chicago to play host DePaul on Friday, Nov. 26.

A pair of home contests against Canisius and Alice Lloyd open December, when the Norse welcome the two foes to BB&T Arena on Dec. 8 and 12, respectively.

The nonconference slate wraps up with road games at Eastern Kentucky on Dec. 18 and Indiana on Dec. 22. EKU went 22-7 overall and 15-5 in the OVC last year, but is now in its first season in the ASUN. The Hoosiers are coming off of a 12-15 season, which included a B1G mark of 7-12.

Led by All-Horizon League Second Team performer Trevon Faulkner and Horizon League Freshman of the Year and third team honoree Marques Warrick, Northern Kentucky returns its top-six scorers from last season. Faulkner averaged 16.7 points per game and Warrick poured in 15.8 ppg. Bryson Langdon also contributed 10.7 ppg, while Adrian Nelson became just the fourth Norse all-time to average double-figure rebounds (10.0 rpg), which ranked in the top-20 nationally.

NKU also added the veteran services of Chris Brandon, a Horizon League All-Defensive Team honoree, and Seybian Sims. 

Freshmen Sam Vinson, Imanuel Zorgvol and Hubertas Pivorius  will join the Norse for their inaugural season donning the black and & gold. Vinson earned multiple first team all-Kentucky honors and was named the Gatorade Kentucky Player of the Year while leading Highland to the Kentucky State Championship, averaging 22.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 6.0 aassists and 2.6 steals per game over the course of the season. Pivorius brings a deep-threat to the Norse, demonstrating his skills with 40 percent 3-point shooting for the Lithuanian U-19 National Team at the 2021 FIBA World Championships. The 7-foot-tall Zorgvol adds tremendous size and length to the Norse and will impact the game with his ability to move, protect the rim and finish.

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