Sun Belt teams hosted Mississippi, Wake Forest, Duke, Navy and Air Force last year.
This year, conference teams will host Missouri and N.C. State in its marquee non-conference games.
“Everyone understands the strategy that is necessary to elevate a team into the top 20 and ultimately in competition for being the highest-ranked among peer conferences,” Benson said. “It requires a blend that allows one to win non-conference games and to be able to have the quality wins and ultimately a big win.”
Basketball tournament: Benson said the conference and its members are still discussing the potential sites for the basketball tournaments as they head into the final year of the contract with Lakefront Arena in New Orleans.
There were several cities, including Atlanta, under consideration before New Orleans was selected a few years ago. But Benson said he can’t say what direction the conference is headed or where it will land.
He did say they haven’t ruled out staying in New Orleans, which is where the conference’s headquarters are located.