Pilots schedule Arkansas and LSU for 2005 season
September 20, 2005
Shreveport, LA—Mountain State University, Oklahoma City University, and Azusa Pacific University are all well known institutions among other NAIA Division I programs who compete each year for a chance at an NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship. While these perennial powerhouses of the NAIA are well known and respected for their past accomplishments, rarely are these names seen or talked about on a national level. Despite having an arsenal of NCAA Division I caliber players, most NAIA affiliated teams do not draw crowds that fill their respective facilities, no matter how big or how small the venue. This is due in part because of the lack of attention from the media on a national level and in some cases even the local level, which is imperative for the community to become familiar with the teams and conferences and the developed rivalries amongst them.
Because of such little notoriety for athletics in the NAIA, many basketball fans across the country will be asking, “Who is LSUS?” when they see their name going across the bottom line on the ESPN ticker. In what will be just their third year in existence, the LSUS Pilots Head Coach Chad McDowell, who has led the Pilots to a 48-21 overall record, a Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Championship, and a Sweet 16 appearance at the 2005 NAIA Buffalo Funds National Tournament, has inked four dates with NCAA Division I opponents that will create even more excitement for Pilot fans.
On November 10, the Pilots will travel to Lake Charles, LA to take on McNeese State University of the Southland Conference. At the conclusion of the contest, the Pilots will load up and head to Fayetteville, AR for a contest versus University of Arkansas. The following Tuesday, the Pilots will be off to Baton Rouge, LA, where they will square off versus the LSU Tigers. LSUS will finish up their NCAA run with a visit to Natchitoches. LA when they will square off versus the 2005 Southland conference Champion Northwestern State University Demons.
“Having these four exhibition games on our schedule against opponents of this caliber can only help us in preparing for our tough conference schedule and making another run at a national tournament berth. We are so excited for our players, our program, and our university to have this great opportunity of playing against two SEC schools along with two teams that compete for the Southland Conference championship every year,” commented McDowell.
LSUS athletic director Doug Robinson believes that the newest additions to the Pilots 2005-2006 schedule has the potential to take the LSUS athletics program to a new level. “McDowell has taken a step forward that will bring a lot of attention to our university and our athletics program. Our student-athletes are getting a chance to play against some of the top schools in the country and that is an experience that they will never forget. These games also showcase just a few of the opportunities that student-athletes receive when they choose to attend LSUS," concluded a very excited Robinson.
The Pilots open their 2005-2006 schedule November 2 at home versus the Southwest Assemblies of God University, and will then start a grueling 13 game road stint before returning home January 3 when they will play host to Central Baptist College.
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