UConn women’s basketball announces home-and-home series with USC, JuJu Watkins starting 2024-25

The UConn women’s basketball team will begin a home-and-home series with USC in 2024-25, marking the first time the teams have met in the regular season since 2003.

The Huskies will host the Trojans in Connecticut on Dec. 21 for the first matchup this season, then make a return trip to Los Angeles in 2025-26. The game will be televised on FOX.

UConn last played a series against USC in 2002 and ’03, and it swept both meetings en route to consecutive NCAA championships. The Huskies dominated the matchup in Storrs, 68-44, in 2002, though it was a much narrower, a 72-69 victory, the next season on the Trojans’ home court.

This season’s meeting will be a rematch of the showdown between UConn and USC in the 2024 Elite Eight that drew more than 6.7 million TV viewers. The Trojans are anchored by generational guard JuJu Watkins, the 2023-24 national freshman of the year who averaged 27.1 points, 7.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.3 steals in her first collegiate season. USC also added star power out of the transfer portal, signing former Stanford standout Kiki Iriafen and Oregon State guard Talia von Oelhoffen.

The Huskies also return their star guard, Paige Bueckers, who was a finalist alongside Watkins for the Naismith Player of the Year award. Bueckers averaged 21.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.2 steals per game, logging 28 points and 10 boards in UConn’s win over the Trojans to reach the Final Four. The Huskies also expect to bring back 2021 No. 1 recruit Azzi Fudd from an ACL tear, and they signed top-ranked prospect Sarah Strong to their 2024 recruiting class.

UConn’s nonconference schedule next year already includes at least five other teams from Power 4 conferences — USC joins the Big Ten in 2024-25 after the dissolution of the Pac-12. The Huskies are slated to face Louisville at the Women’s Champions Classic in Brooklyn on Dec. 7, and dates are to be determined for ongoing contracts with North Carolina, South Carolina and Notre Dame. UConn will also renew its series with longtime rival Tennessee after missing the matchup in 2023-24.