Breaking down the 2013-14 basketball schedule

Michigan's basketball schedule was recently released. Thoughts on the slate, both non-conference and Big Ten ...
Tue., Oct. 29 Concordia (MI) ex Crisler Center 7:00 p.m
Mon., Nov. 4 Wayne State ex Crisler Center 7:00 p.m.
Fri., Nov. 8 UMass-Lowell Crisler Center 7:00 p.m.
Tue., Nov. 12 S. Carolina State Crisler Center 7:00 p.m.
Sun., Nov. 17 at Iowa State Ames, Iowa 5:00 p.m.
Puerto Rico Tip-Off
Thu., Nov. 21 vs. Long Beach State 6:00 p.m. AT
Fri., Nov. 22 Florida State/VCU 6:00 or 8:30 p.m. AT
Sun., Nov. 24 TBD
Fri., Nov. 29 Coppin State Crisler Center 3:00 p.m.
Big Ten/ACC Challenge
Tue., Dec. 3 at Duke Durham, N.C. 9:15 p.m.
Sat., Dec. 7 Houston Baptist Crisler Center 12:00 p.m.
Sat., Dec. 14 Arizona Crisler Center 12:00 p.m.
Brooklyn Hoops Holiday Invitational
Sat., Dec. 21 Stanford Brooklyn, N.Y. 8:00 p.m.
Sat., Dec. 28 Holy Cross Crisler Center 6:30 p.m.
Big Ten Schedule
Thu., Jan. 2 at Minnesota Minneapolis, Minn. 7:00 p.m.
Sun., Jan. 5 Northwestern Crisler Center TBA
Thu., Jan. 9 at Nebraska Lincoln, Neb. 9:00 p.m.
Tue., Jan. 14 Penn State Crisler Center 8:00 p.m.
Sat., Jan. 18 at Wisconsin Madison, Wis. 6:00 p.m.
Wed., Jan. 22 Iowa Crisler Center 7:00 p.m.
Sat., Jan. 25 at MSU East Lansing 7:00 p.m.
Thu., Jan. 30 Purdue Crisler Center 9:00 p.m.
Sun., Feb. 2 at Indiana Bloomington, Ind. 1:00 p.m.
Wed., Feb. 5 Nebraska Crisler Center 6:30 p.m.
Sat., Feb. 8 at Iowa Iowa City, Iowa 2:00 p.m.
Tue., Feb. 11 at Ohio State Columbus, Ohio 9:00 p.m.
Sun., Feb. 16 Wisconsin Crisler Center 1:00 p.m.
Sun., Feb. 23 MSU Crisler Center Noon or 6 p.m.
Wed., Feb. 26 at Purdue West Lafayette, Ind. 7:00 p.m.
Sat., Mar. 1 Minnesota Crisler Center 6:00 p.m.
Tue., Mar. 4 at Illinois Champaign, Ill. 6:00 p.m.
Sat., Mar. 8 Indiana * Crisler Center 6:00 p.m.
Big Ten Tournament
Thu., Mar. 13 First Round Indianapolis TBA
Fri., Mar. 14 Quarterfinal Indianapolis TBA
Sat., Mar. 15 Semifinal Indianapolis 1:40 or 4:05 p.m.
Sun., Mar. 16 Championship Indianapolis, Ind.
TV Time
The Wolverines will play 11 of their 18 Big Ten games on either ESPN or CBS. ESPN will featurn them eight times, network, including a pair of Super Tuesday games at Ohio State on Feb. 11 and at Illinois on March 4 as well as the College GameDay match-up at Michigan State Jan. 25.
U-M has three other ESPN games away from Ann Arbor: at Nebraska Jan. 9, at Wisconsin Jan. 18 and at Iowa Feb. 8. Michigan's two home contests on ESPN will be against Purdue Jan. 30 and Indiana March 8.
The Wolverines could play up to three Big Ten games on CBS. They'll travel to Bloomington, Ind., to face Indiana Feb. 2 and host Wisconsin at Crisler Center on Feb. 16. Both games are slated for 1 p.m. starts. Michigan's game with Michigan State on Feb. 23 is a conference TV wildcard game, meaning it could also be on CBS.
No Buckeyes in Ann Arbor
That's normally a good thing. However, the single play means Michigan must travel to OSU in the only meeting between the two schools. Additionally, U-M plays Illinois only once, also on the road.
U-M gets Penn State and Northwestern only once each, as well, both at home early in the slate.
Quick Start in Conference?
If Michigan wins at Minnesota in its Jan. 2 opener, it could be off to the races. The next three games are Northwestern, at Nebraska and Penn State before a trip to Madison to face the Badgers.
It gets tougher from there, with two of the next three being at Indiana and at MSU.
There's a bye before MSU Feb. 23, a positive, but finish the season at home against Indiana when the students are on break - the second year in a row that will occur.
Top 10 Again
The Sporting News ranks Michigan No. 7 overall and No. 2 in the Big Ten behind No. 2 (nationally) Michigan State. Non-conference opponents Duke (4) and Arizona (5) also made the top ten.
Lindy's ranks Michigan No. 10 overall and No. 3 in the Big Ten behind MSU and OSU.
Prediction: Michigan goes 11-1 in the non-conference, its only loss at Duke in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, and 13-5 in Big Ten play. That should be good for a second place finish.