BUIES CREEK – Campbell University head baseball coach Greg Goff announced the release of the Fighting Camels' 2012 schedule this week. The Camels have 29 home dates scheduled that will include 36 games at Taylor Field. As CU returns to the Big South Conference for the first time in 17 years, the team will host Charleston Southern, UNC Asheville, Radford and Presbyterian while traveling to Winthrop, Liberty, VMI and Coastal Carolina for conference matchups.
Non-conference home-and-home games are slated with Duke, N.C. State, North Carolina A&T and N.C. Central. The Camels will travel to former Atlantic Sun foe Lipscomb for a three-game series during the team's off weekend inside Big South play. "We are looking forward to another challenging non-conference schedule that will be a good mix of teams from around the state, and from other good conferences," Goff said
"I think that it is important that we continue the rivalries that we have formed with teams like N.C. State, and others, as well as play some of the top teams from different conferences around the country. I think that our non-conference slate, which features a lot of home games, will offer our fans a great chance to see our men play some quality baseball."
Campbell opens the season on Friday, Feb. 17 in Buies Creek, hosting the Marist Red Foxes for a single game. The teams will then play a doubleheader the following day. The first of four ACC games will take place the next week, as the Camels travel to Durham to take on Duke on Feb. 21.
CU will welcome Fordham to campus for a weekend set on Feb. 24 for another single game following by a Saturday doubleheader. The Camels then travel to N.C. State on Feb. 28 to face the Wolfpack.
Campbell opens March with 13 home games and one road game over a 20-day span. The stretch will begin with the Camels hosting the Campbell Invitational Tournament, a four-day event that will feature N.C. Central and Holy Cross from Mar. 2-5. A road game at North Carolina A&T is followed by a three-game set with Valparaiso. Campbell then concludes the home-stand with games against Rider, Longwood and Coppin State.
The return to the Big South Conference takes place when CU travels to Rock Hill, S.C. to take on Winthrop on March 23-24. The Camels will be returning to the conference it was a charter member in forming. The first home Big South contests take place the following weekend, March 30-31, in Buies Creek against Charleston Southern.
CU will host Duke on April 3 in a single game before traveling to Liberty April 6-7 for a three-game conference set. The team plays non-conference games against N.C. A&T and at N.C. Central before hosting Big South foe UNC Asheville April 13-14. The Camels then host the team's second ACC opponent on April 17 when N.C. State travels to Buies Creek.
Campbell's longest road stretch of the season comes during a ten-game road swing in late April. Following a Big South series at VMI, the Camels will travel to Nashville, Tenn. to take on former Atlantic Sun rival Lipscomb. That three-game series will take place April 26-28.
CU open's the May portion of the schedule at 2011 NCAA tournament participant Coastal Carolina on May 5-6. The Camels then conclude the regular season nonconference portion of the schedule with a road trip to Wofford on May 8 followed by a home game with N.C. Central on May 9.
The last two Big South Conference series' will take place at Taylor Field on the Buies Creek campus. Campbell plays host to Radford on May 11-12 before concluding the regular season slate by hosting Presbyterian May 17-19. The conference tournament is scheduled to take place at High Point University.
"Getting back into the Big South is very exciting for us," Goff said about the return to the conference CU left 17 seasons ago. "Over the last four years we have been able to build a good fan base, many that have travelled with us on the road. Now, those fans, and others will be able to make those road trips a lot easier, and give us support both on the road and at home."
"The Big South also gives us a chance to build on some of those regional rivalries that will be so important to both our players and our fans, and to be quite honest, we are really happy with the decreased travel that being in the Big South will allow. We think that it will be a big benefit to our guys."