SEWARD, Neb. – Head men’s basketball coach Ben Limback’s fifth season leading the Bulldogs will tip off Oct. 30 with a road trip to Salina, Kan., home to Kansas Wesleyan University. The road contest will kick off a 30-game regular-season schedule, announced Monday (June 19) by the Concordia athletic department. The 2017-18 slate includes 11 home games and 18 clashes with GPAC opponents.
Limback’s program is coming off a 21-win campaign in 2016-17. That victory total was the most for Bulldog men’s basketball since the 2004-05 national runner up team went 32-6. It also marked a high water mark in the coaching career of Limback, who has helped the program improve its record each season since he took over in 2013.
The Cattle Classic will reach the 18th year of its existence when the action takes place Nov. 3-4 inside Walz Arena. Concordia will take on a pair of NAIA Division I foes in Mount Mercy University (Iowa) and Evangel University (Mo.) as part of the event that raises money and food for the Blue Valley Community Action’s Food Pantry. Midland will be the fourth team to make up the Cattle Classic field.
A challenging nonconference schedule consists of three contests against teams that finished last season either ranked or receiving votes: No. 8 Tabor College (Kan.), No. 10 Robert Morris University (Ill.) and Mount Mercy (received votes). The matchup with Tabor is part of the Sterling College Classic (Nov. 10-11) while the game at Robert Morris will open a two-game (Dec. 29-30) Christmas break road trip to the Windy City. In addition, Concordia will venture west for the Colorado School of Mines Classic (Nov. 24-25) in Golden, Colo.
Nonconference regular-season games will conclude with the playing of the 67th annual Concordia Invitational Tournament (Jan. 26-27) at Concordia-Wisconsin in Mequon, Wis. The Bulldogs won CIT titles in both 2016 and 2017 and own 27 all-time CIT championships, far and away the most of any of the Concordias. On the opening day of the 2018 event, the Bulldogs will go head-to-head with Concordia-Ann Arbor in a rematch of the 2017 championship game that took place in Seward.
The GPAC slate begins Nov. 15 when 2017 national tournament qualifier Midland makes a visit to Walz Arena. Defending GPAC champion Briar Cliff will invade Seward on Jan. 10. Concordia recorded a 14-3 home record in 2016-17. The GPAC tournament dates are set for Feb. 21, 24 and 27.
The Bulldogs will be moving on without graduated seniors Chandler Folkerts and Eli Ziegler, both All-GPAC selections this past season. Limback will be counting upon the development of 2016-17 freshmen such as blossoming Clay Reimers and Tanner Shuck.