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NAU men’s basketball season opener vs. Arizona rescheduled to Dec. 7

Northern Arizona guard Cameron Shelton (20) drives past Arizona guard Josh Green during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Northern Arizona University’s men’s basketball team will finally get to play its season opener on Dec. 7, the team announced Monday.

The game against the Arizona Wildcats, originally scheduled for Nov. 25, was postponed last week due to a positive COVID-19 test within NAU’s program.

Tip-off is at 7 p.m.

“Our student-athletes, coaches and support staff have worked extremely hard to prepare for the start of the season,” NAU Vice President of Intercollegiate Athletics Mike Marlow said in a press release after the postponement. “Our top priority will remain the health and well-being of our student-athletes, coaches and staff.

“We appreciate the collaboration with the University of Arizona, the Big Sky Conference, the Pac-12 Conference, as well as the continued first-class care of our sports medicine team.”

NAU will then host UC Riverside in a home opener on Dec. 10.

The Lumberjacks’ original home openers against Big Sky conference rival Eastern Washington were rescheduled to Dec. 18 and 19, with a 12 p.m. tip-off.

To limit travel during the pandemic this season, Big Sky announced a new travel format where teams will play against each fellow conference team twice and have a home-and-home series with two opponents.