GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — On Monday night, the East Carolina University women’s basketball team got its season started with a victory. Tuesday night, the ECU men’s basketball team hopes to do the same.

2022-23 Men’s Basketball Schedule

The Pirates are entering their first year under new coach Michael Schwartz. There’s a lot of buzz going around on how the team will look, the upcoming schedule and what the results will be. We’ll find out Tuesday night as the Pirates host Mercer at Minges Coliseum.

Minges Madness gets fans excited for ECU hoops season

The team has a lot of new faces and many expectations to meet and overcome. The Pirates were picked to finish last in the American Athletic Conference, which should be motivation enough to prove to everyone how good they can be.

Let’s take a look at some of the most anticipated games for the Pirates this season.

November 8: Mercer

Everybody anticipates the home opener, especially when it doubles as a home opener in Minges Coliseum. These teams have only faced off once in 2016, where Mercer took the 70-66 win.

ECU basketball media day full of optimism from players, coach

December 7: UNCW

In 2020, these teams faced off in Greenville and the Pirates were able to take a 88-78 overtime win. The Seahawks kept it interesting, sending it to overtime after outscoring the Pirates by 14 in the second half. ECU was able to score 15 in OT to get the win.

UNCW is coming off a close game with UNC in Monday’s season opener.

December 11: Coppin State

ECU may have gotten the win last year against the Eagles but it wasn’t by much. The Pirates slid by at the buzzer after letting Coppin State outscore them in the second half. If the game is anything like last year, it’ll be an entertaining one.

East Carolina nips Coppin State at buzzer thanks to Newton bucket

January 4: UCF

It was an unfortunate game for the Pirates in Minges when the Pirates and Knights met last season.

ECU went into halftime feeling confident. They dropped 44 points in the first half alone, holding UCF to 28. Ironically in the second half, the Knights scored 44 and the Pirates were held to 28, sending the game to overtime. UCF got past ECU and took this one, 92-85.

Buzzer beater lifts UCF past ECU, 69-66

January 7: Memphis

January 15th, 2021. A day that will go down in ECU basketball history.

It was a close game throughout but the Pirates were able to close the gap late and were down one near the end. Brandon Suggs hit a baseline jumper as time expired to lift them over the Tigers, 72-71.

The Pirates held a season-high crowd of 5,107 captivated throughout that night.

January 11: Cincinnati

The Bearcats took both wins last year in the regular season AAC matchups. Even though Cincinnati got both wins, they barely got past the Pirates in their second contest, 60-59.

These two teams then faced off in the first round of the AAC Championship and the Bearcats ended ECU’s season by getting a 74-63 win.

The Pirates will be looking to get their first win over Cincinnati after going on a three-game losing streak.

February 25: Houston

In the 2020-21 season, ECU upset the No. 5 Cougars for the Pirates’ first-ever top-five win.

In the 2022 Associated Press preseason poll, the Cougars are ranked No. 3. When ECU faced them last year, they were No. 10. For lack of better words, Houston rolled over the Pirates, leading 44-14 at the half. The Cougars went on to win, 79-63.