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Michigan’s non-conference schedule official, Kentucky backs out of 2021 game

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Editoralizing here: They chickened out.

UCLA v Michigan Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The Michigan Wolverines men’s basketball program officially announced its non-conference schedule for the 2021-22 season on Monday afternoon with one notable opponent missing. The Kentucky Wildcats, who were set to come to Ann Arbor for the first of a three-game series, has dropped out of the matchup due to “scheduling uncertainties.”

“Due to uncertainties with scheduling, the Wildcats elected to not play this season,” the Michigan release says. The game is still on for 2022 in London with the other dates set to be moved around. The Wolverines replaced the Dec. 4 date with San Diego State instead.

Michigan will open the season in an exhibition game at Wayne State on Nov. 5 to break in their new basketball facility. The start of the regular season is set for Nov. 10 at home against Buffalo.

The rest of the games are as follows:

Nov. 5 — at Wayne State (exhibition)

Nov. 10 — vs. Buffalo

Nov. 13 — Prairie View A&M (Washington, D.C., Coaches vs. Racism)

Nov. 16 — vs. Seton Hall (Gavitt Games)

Nov. 19 — UNLV (Las Vegas, Roman Main Event)

Nov. 21 — Arizona or Wichita State (Las Vegas, Roman Main Event)

Nov. 24 — vs. Tarleton State

Dec. 1 — at North Carolina (Big Ten/ACC Challenge)

Dec. 4 — vs. San Diego State

Dec. 18 — vs. Southern Utah

Dec. 21 — vs. Purdue Fort Wayne

Dec. 30 — at Central Florida

Oregon was another opponent that was rumored to be on the slate this year, but they did not show up this time around. Michigan owes them a return trip, so we will keep that in mind for future schedules.

This feels like a much manageable slate without Kentucky and Oregon on it, even though John Calipari’s Wildcats haven’t made the NCAA Tournament since 2018-19. Saltiness aside, it is a bummer that we will not see Calipari match wits with Juwan Howard this season.