The 8 Best College Basketball Games You Need To See This Year

Tuesday night gave us our first real taste of college basketball action this year as Kentucky ousted Duke, Michigan State upset Kansas, and Maryland came back to beat Georgetown. While several teams now enter the cupcake portion of their non-conference schedules, what must-see games are on the horizon? Here are the eight games that are appointment TV this year:

Maryland at North Carolina - Dec. 1

The headline game of the ACC/Big Ten challenge matches these two top-three teams against each other - the only such scheduled matchup of the season. Throw in the fact that these two have plenty of history from Maryland's days in the ACC, and this one offers plenty of excitement.

Florida at Michigan State - Dec. 12

Florida is looking to prove that they haven't taken a step back in head coach Billy Donovan's departure, and they'll get their first marquee chance to do so against a very good Michigan State team.

Cal at Virginia - Dec. 22

Many expect Cal to be the breakout team of the season thanks to the return of guard Tyrone Wallace and stud freshmen forwards Jaylen Brown and Ivan Rabb. Their road contest against a top Virginia team will be their first real test.

Louisville at Kentucky - Dec. 26

This heated in-state rivarly is always one of the most exciting games of the season. Both Louisville and Kentucky are expected to be high seeds in the NCAA Tournament.

Oklahoma at Kansas - Jan. 4

Kansas has won the Big 12 for 11 straight years, and the Oklahoma Sooners are their biggest threat this season. The first matchup between the two this year will tell us just how good the Sooners are this year.

Maryland at Michigan State - Jan. 23

Michigan State has been the best team in the Big Ten for the past few decades, but Maryland is expected to win the conference title in just their second year in the Big Ten. This game could ultimately determine the conference's regular season champion.

Kentucky at Kansas - Jan. 30

A rare non-conference game in late January, this game has two traditional college basketball powers - and two top 10 teams - squaring off in one of the game's most historic places (KU's Allen Fieldhouse).

Duke vs. North Carolina - Feb. 17, Mar. 5

The best rivalry in college basketball is always worth watching. However, this year will be better than most as both teams are ranked in the top five.

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