Villanova to open 2012-13 season on Nov. 9

Villanova will begin its 2012-13 regular season on Nov. 9 at home against the University of the District of Columbia in the 2K Sports Classic, and will go against St. John’s at home in its Big East opener on Jan. 2.

The Wildcats, who are coming off a 13-19 record last season that included a 5-13 mark in the league, will play its four Philadelphia Big Five games over a 17-day period beginning Nov. 25 at La Salle and concluding Dec. 11 against St. Joseph’s at home. They host Temple on Dec. 5 and go to the Palestra on Dec. 8 for Penn.

The Wildcats’ non-conference schedule also includes a pair of games at Madison Square Garden at the end of the 2K Sports Classic, and a trip to Vanderbilt on Dec. 1 in the Big East/SEC Challenge.

Villanova will play three opponents – Syracuse, Providence and South Florida – twice each in the Big East under the conference’s 18-game format. The Wildcats’ first road game in the Big East is Jan. 9 at USF.

Villanova travels to Syracuse, one of the pre-season favorites to win the conference in what will be its final season in the Big East, on Jan. 12. The Wildcats meet the Orange at home on Jan. 26 in an unusual 11 a.m. start.

Louisville, a 2012 Final Four team which is also a pre-season favorite for the conference title, visits Villanova on Jan. 22.

An athletic department spokesman said dates for the Wildcats’ home games at the Wells Fargo Center have yet to be finalized.

The Wildcats will close their season on a weekday, wrapping up the regular season on Wednesday, March 6 at home against Georgetown. The Big East tournament begins on March 12 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

--Joe Juliano