A key part of the LSU men’s basketball team’s nonconference schedule is set.
On Monday, the bracket for the eight-team Paradise Jam was released, and the Tigers drew Old Dominion for their opening game Nov. 21 at St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. They are paired with Illinois State and Weber State on one side of the draw.
The Monarchs, out of Conference USA, went 18-18 last season, reaching the semifinals of the College Basketball Invitational. Coach Jeff Jones led ODU to 13 more victories than it had the previous season after arriving from American University.
Old Dominion brings back four of its top five scorers; second-leading scorer Dimitri Batten transferred. Still, it finished 251st in adjusted offensive efficiency, according to advanced statistics website KenPom.com, and was No. 164 in the RPI.
Clemson, Gardner-Webb, Nevada and Seton Hall make up the other side of the draw. With a pair of wins, LSU would face a team from that quartet Nov. 24.
The Tigers’ nonconference schedule so far features games against teams that finished with an average RPI of 121.3.