Never too early for Mack hoops

I just got the McClymonds High boys basketball scheduled e-mailed to me by 2008 Cal-Hi Sports state coach of the year and Bay Area News Group East Bay coach of the year Dwight Nathaniel, which brought the immediate reaction of “Is Coach Moe back?” I’ll quickly squash those rumors and say no. Dwight said he’s just helping new coach Brandon Brooks with some administrative stuff. Since I have the defending state champs schedule in hand, I thought I’d point out some of the highlights.

* Mack opens the season Saturday, Nov. 29 against San Leandro at 8 p.m. in the Gametime Classic at Berkeley High.

* The Warriors follow by taking on Grant on the road on Dec. 6. Mack beat Grant at home last year.

The first home game is Tuesday, Dec. 9 against El Cerrito at 7 p.m. and on Saturday, Dec. 13, Mack hosts Reno at 5:30 p.m.

* Valley Christian-San Jose invades West Oakland on Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m.

* This tournament is on the schedule just for Vegas Bill and XTower. From Dec. 18-20, Mack will play in the Bishop Gorman Holiday Classic in Las Vegas. I expect reports from Bill and Tower.

* The nonleague schedule concludes with a game at Berkeley on Dec. 23, the Clovis Elks Classic from Dec. 26-30, home games against Fairfield (Jan. 2) and Hogan (Jan. 8 ) and playing at Jesuit on Jan. 10 at 8:30 p.m. in the Father Kelly Tribute.

* OAL play begins Jan. 13 in a nice home showdown with last year’s runner-up Oakland at 3:45 p.m.

* The final nonleague game on the slate, which again will likely be one of the area’s most anticipated games of the year, is Mack playing De La Salle on Jan. 19 at Haas Pavilion in the Martin Luther King Classic.

* The regular season concludes at home against Castlemont on Feb 24 and the OAL playoffs will run from March 3-6.

* One interesting quirk to the Warriors’ OAL schedule is they open with three home games, then have five straight on the road, before closing with two homes games. That stretch down the middle could be tough.

Jimmy Durkin

Jimmy Durkin is a sports writer for the Bay Area News Group.