PROGRAM SCHEDULE PROPAGANDA: PRESS RELEASE
THIS IS WHY WE FIGHT: THE SCHEDULE
Here are some schedule highlights and games of note:
March 14: Monmouth; March 21: at Canisius; March 28: at Quinnipiac; April 4: Detroit; April 18: at Manhattan; April 25: Siena
The MAAC stands in a somewhat unique position as a league that doesn't monopolize the back-end of its members' schedules, dropping conference dates throughout the year on their members' slates. The Red Foxes -- a year removed from playing for the league's automatic invitation to the NCAA Tournament -- will exhibit that scheduling function in 2015, but will do so in a way that mirrors the team's league march last spring: Marist will meet its MAAC peers in pairs starting in mid-March, basically alternating home and road dates while putting nonconference games between its MAAC competition. Thus, while there is a stretch of four consecutive weekends where the Red Foxes will face a MAAC foe, Marist will never need to face four consecutive MAAC opponents in a row at any point in the season.
The way this schedule sets up, then, can either be a detriment or benefit for Marist: If the Red Foxes' MAAC schedule was compact and concentrated, it could catch teams in ruts and ride hot streaks to important league victories; alternatively, a gapped league schedule allows the Red Foxes to play their way out of ruts and not have things slip away in a landslide. Or it's purely neutral and gameday is gameday is gameday. Whatever.
May 2-4: MAAC Championships
Marist has made one trip to the NCAA Tournament: 2005, a year in which the Red Foxes won the MAAC and bowed to Johns Hopkins in the first round after suffering a brutal 22-6 clobbering. Marist has advanced to the MAAC Tournament final only once since then (last season), this despite the fact that the Red Foxes have hosted the event three times after the 2005 season. Further illustrating the team's difficulty in moving through the MAAC's biggest event is that the Red Foxes have entered the MAAC Tournament as a two-seed or better four times since 2005 -- 2007 (1), 2011 (2), 2013 (1), and 2014 (2) -- and have crashed out in the semifinals against lower-seeded competition three times.
It's unfair to characterize Marist as having some kind of brain block when it comes to the MAAC Tournament -- the league is pure anarchy, and in a tournament environment that chaos is exacerbated -- but the Red Foxes do have a checkered history when it comes to accelerating at the apex of the season. Should Marist have similar situations presented to them this season, a lil' bit o' love this year could go a long way toward absolving some prior goofs.
February 14: at Air Force; March 7: High Point; March 10: v. Penn State; March 14: Monmouth; April 4: Detroit; April 7: at Hofstra
All of these schools have two syllable names, just like Marist. 42.86 percent of Marist's schedule is comprised of schools with two syllable names. Important stuff.