The undefeated baseball team is on the road after hosting Eastern Illinois Tuesday, and the men's basketball team closes the regular season at No. 21/22 Loyola on Friday and Saturday. Here's a look at a busy week in Saluki Athletics:
• Women's basketball hosts No. 19/23 Missouri State, 6 p.m., Banterra Center (TV TBA): The Lady Bears (15-2) are 11-0 in the Missouri Valley Conference, but fell on a last-second shot the last time they were in Carbondale. SIU (8-10, 5-8 MVC) come off a sweep of Indiana State on the road looking to move up the standings. The game is scheduled to air on 95.1 FM.
• Softball (6-0) vs. Austin Peay at 2:30 p.m., vs. Mercer at 5 p.m. at the Coach B Classic, Charlotte West Stadium: SIU puts its undefeated record on the line against Austin Peay and Mercer on the opening day of the Coach B Classic. The Salukis have won 15 straight, dating back to last season, after taking three games at the Snowman Tournament in Starkville, Mississippi.
• Baseball (3-0 entering Tuesday night) at Mercer, 5 p.m., Macon, Georgia: The Salukis open a three-game set at Mercer on Friday night. The Bears (3-0 entering Tuesday) opened the season with a weekend series sweep of Jackson State, outscoring them 33-0 in three games.
• Men's basketball (11-11, 5-11 MVC) at No. 21/22 Loyola (19-4, 14-2), Gentile Arena, Chicago, 8 p.m. (CBS Sports Network): Fresh off a split of their weekend series against Valparaiso, the Salukis close the season at nationally-ranked Loyola on Friday and Saturday. The Ramblers enter the final weekend of the regular season tied with Drake for first place in the league. Loyola is 11-0 at home this season.
• Football (1-1, 0-1 Missouri Valley Football Conference) hosts No. 1 North Dakota State (2-0, 1-0), noon, Saluki Stadium (ESPN+): Fresh off a disappointing 44-21 loss at North Dakota in its spring opener, SIU gets an opportunity to jump right back into the national spotlight. The undefeated Bison, who have won eight of the last nine FCS national titles, have captured 39 straight games, the most in FCS history. The Salukis have played them tough recently.
• Softball vs. Ball State at 12:15 p.m., vs. DePaul at 2:30 p.m., Coach B Classic, Charlotte West Stadium: SIU takes on Ball State and DePaul on the second day of the three-day Coach B Classic.
• Baseball at Mercer, 1 p.m., Macon, Georgia: The Salukis continue their three-game series at Mercer on Saturday.
• Women's basketball hosts Valparaiso, 4 p.m., Banterra Center (TV TBA): The Salukis host Valparaiso (8-10, 4-7) Saturday and Sunday at the Banterra Center.
• Men's basketball at Loyola, 5 p.m., Gentile Arena, Chicago (ESPNU or ESPN2): SIU earned at least a split in its last four weekend conference series. Can the Salukis earn a split against the Ramblers, who are fighting for a conference title and the No. 1 seed at next week's MVC Tournament?
• Baseball at Mercer, noon, Macon, Georgia: SIU closes its weekend series at Mercer with a noon start.
• Softball vs. Austin Peay at 12:15 p.m., vs. Saint Louis at 4:45 p.m. at the Coach B Classic, Charlotte West Stadium: The Salukis, who received votes in the latest national polls Tuesday, close their first home tournament of the season against Austin Peay and Saint Louis.
• Women's soccer hosts Valparaiso, 1 p.m., Lew Hartzog Track and Field Complex: The women's soccer team (0-1) hosts Valpo in its first MVC match after starting up in 2019. The Salukis lost their only other match this spring to Western Kentucky, 4-0.
• Volleyball at Bradley, 3 p.m., Peoria: SIU (2-8, 1-7) goes for its second conference win of the season when it opens a two-game series at Bradley (5-3) Sunday in Peoria.
• Women's basketball vs. Valparaiso, 4 p.m., Banterra Center (TV TBA): The Salukis close their series against the Brown and Gold at 4 p.m.
• Volleyball at Bradley, 5 p.m., Peoria: SIU closes its two-match series in Peoria against the Braves.
On Twitter: @THefferman