Challenging schedule will test Villanova all season
The Wildcats, whose home court is being renovated, will play most of their home games at the Wells Fargo Center.
Villanova will play only one on-campus game. And that will be at Jake Nevin Arena, where it hasn't played since 1986. That's what happens when your Pavilion is getting renovated. The Wildcats have enjoyed many big moments in South Philly as well. So the venue thing might not be too big a mitigating factor. It's just different.
They're in the Battle For Atlantis (Bahamas) over the Thanksgiving holiday. In the second round they could get Purdue. They won at Purdue last season, but the Boilermakers will start in the Top 25. And the third matchup might be with Arizona, which will start in the Top 10 if not higher.
They face Gonzaga, which lost in the title game to North Carolina, on Dec. 5 in New York.
They've won 18 straight Big Five games, 17 by at least 10 points. They do go to St. Joseph's and Temple in December.
They begin the Big East with trips to DePaul and Butler between Christmas and New Year's. In January there's a stretch of four-in-five on the road, including at Connecticut, the teams' first meeting since the second round of the 2013 NCAAs. They open February with four straight at the Wells Fargo Center, followed by another four-of-five away. That includes at Providence, Xavier and Seton Hall, the three teams picked to finish second through fourth.