Illinois Fighting Illini Basketball: 2013 Big 10 Schedule Released

Feb 26, 2012; Champaign, IL, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini guard D.J. Richardson (1) and guard Brandon Paul (3) and head coach Bruce Weber during the second half against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Assembly Hall. Illinois won 65-54. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-US PRESSWIRE

Illinois Fighting Illini men's basketball schedule is out, released Tuesday by the Big Ten.

Illinois men's basketball and their fans now know the dates and opponents in Big Ten Conference play for the 2012-2013 season, after the conference released the conference regular-season schedule Tuesday.

The Fighting Illini open on January 2 at Purdue, the first of 18 regular-season games. The last regular-season game is March 10 at Ohio State, then the Big Ten tournament is March 14-17.

Illinois struggled in conference play last season, going 6-12. But the Fighting Illini have a very interesting non-conference schedule that should prepare them well for the Big Ten games.

The team will spend roughly a week in Hawaii in November playing the University of Hawaii and three teams in the Maui Invitational, the first of which is USC.

After three home games, it's off to Spokane, Wash., to face mid-major power Gonzaga. Later in December, it's a game against Missouri in St. Louis and after Christmas, Auburn in Chicago.

For more on the Illini check out Hail to the Orange. For more news and notes around the country, stick with SB Nation's college basketball news hub.

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