Auburn to face Baylor in men’s basketball at Sanford Pentagon
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The Auburn Tigers will take on the Baylor Bears in a non-conference matchup at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on Nov. 7. This marks the second consecutive year Baylor will compete at the Sanford Pentagon, while it will be the first time Auburn plays on Heritage Court.
Ticket information and game time will be announced later.
“Auburn and Baylor are powerhouse college basketball programs, and this matchup will be an incredible start to the 2023-24 college season at the Sanford Pentagon,” said Jesse Smith, vice president of Sanford Sports. “It does not matter where in the country these teams are from – fans in South Dakota love basketball, and they will help make this game a memorable one for the athletes and coaches.”
Auburn, a member of the SEC, is coming off a 21-13 season which saw the Tigers advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Forward Johni Broome, an All-SEC Second Team selection who led the Tigers in scoring (14.2 ppg), rebounding (8.4 rpg) and blocked shots (2.4 bpg) in 2022-23) will return for his junior year.
Three-time SEC Coach of the Year Bruce Pearl returns for his tenth season at Auburn. He has guided the Tigers to over 170 wins in nine seasons, the program’s first-ever No. 1 ranking in both national polls and a memorable run to the NCAA Final Four in 2019. This will be the first trip for Auburn to the state of South Dakota.
“What a great opportunity to play a perennial Top 10 program with a great coach like Scott Drew,” said Pearl. “Our guys came to Auburn and the SEC, to play against the very best. We will get to see right away where we are as a team. A marquee matchup like this, playing a guaranteed Quad 1 opponent, will help us build our potential tournament resume and get us prepared for league play.”
Baylor, a member of the Big 12, finished last season with an overall record of 23-11, advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Bears played a memorable game at the Sanford Pentagon in 2022, defeating the Gonzaga Bulldogs 64-63 in front of a sold-out crowd.
Head coach Scott Drew enters his 21st season at Baylor. The school’s all-time winningest head coach led the team to the national championship in 2021-22 season.
“Complete Sports Management and Sanford are the best in the business,” said Drew. “We always enjoy working with them and thoroughly enjoyed our experience at the Pentagon last year. Our game sold out with Gonzaga in six minutes, and the crowd was amazing. We can’t wait to be back there in November.” This year’s contest will mark the eighth all-time meeting between Auburn and Baylor with Baylor holding a 5-2 series lead. The last meeting was an 84-72 Bears win in Waco, Texas, on Jan. 30, 2021.
Auburn vs. Baylor is the third NCAA Division I men’s basketball game announced for this season at the Sanford Pentagon. Nebraska will take on Oregon State on Nov. 18 and Oregon will face Syracuse on Dec. 17.
“Bringing national champions and Final Four contenders to the Pentagon is the set standard, and we’re proud to be part of it,” said Lea Miller-Tooley, CEO, Complete Sports Management.
Since opening in 2013, the Sanford Pentagon has hosted more than 80 Division I men’s and women’s college basketball games. Last December, the Pentagon hosted a rematch of the 2021 men’s national championship game between No. 6 Baylor and No. 14 Gonzaga. Two weeks later, defending women’s national champions and No. 1 ranked South Carolina defeated South Dakota State on Heritage Court.