The Ohio State men’s basketball team has bolstered its strength of schedule for the upcoming season with the addition of a former national champion.
OSU spokesman Dan Wallenberg confirmed Thursday the Buckeyes are scheduled to take on the Louisville Cardinals Dec. 2 at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky.
The matchup is one of 14 games set to be played as a part of the 16th annual Big Ten/ACC Challenge. The previous two challenges were split by the two conferences.
The Cardinals, which won the 2013 NCAA national championship, finished the 2013-14 season 31-6 and 15-3, including a win over the eventual national champion Connecticut in the inaugural American Athletic Conference championship game. Louisville fell to rival Kentucky in the Sweet 16, 74-69.
The Buckeyes’ season ended when OSU lost to the Dayton Flyers in the second round of the NCAA tournament, 60-59.
OSU is set to enter the 2014-15 season without three of its starters from last season as junior forward LaQuinton Ross declared for the NBA Draft and senior guards Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith Jr. are set to graduate. Sophomore guard Amedeo Della Valle also left the program to pursue a professional career in Italy.
The Buckeyes are set to welcome a top five recruiting class to Columbus, according to ESPN, as well as bringing in transfer forwards Anthony Lee, a former redshirt-junior from Temple, and Trevor Thompson, a former freshman from Virginia Tech. Lee will be eligible to play immediately for coach Thad Matta, while Thompson is expected to sit out the 2014-15 season per NCAA transfer regulations.