Head coach Michael Litzinger announced the 2006-07 schedule this afternoon.
June 26, 2006
SALT LAKE CITY - On the cusp of one of its most challenging schedules in the last six years, University of Utah swimming and diving head coach Michael Litzinger looks to guide his team to yet another Mountain West Conference title in 2006-07.
"The 2006-07 schedule is the most ambitious one set since I have been the head coach at the University of Utah," remarked Litzinger.
"The addition of some great non-conference opponents in Purdue, Georgia, Penn State and Louisville give our men's team a fantastic opportunity to match up with some of the most respected teams in the East."
The Utes' home opener is on Oct. 21 when Denver University invades Ute Natatorium. Also visiting Salt Lake City are Brigham Young (Feb. 2), Wyoming (Jan. 26) and Air Force (Jan. 27).
Road trips include a date against Purdue, Georgia, Louisville, and Penn state (at Purdue University) and the Ohio Invitational while the divers are invited to compete against some of the best at a diving-only competition in Athens, Ga.
"The Ohio State Invitational will hold national-level challenges for us as Ohio State, Minnesota, Iowa, South Carolina and Notre Dame will also be in attendance.
"Our divers have been invited to the Georgia Diving Invitational in January," said Litzinger. "That in itself is a great compliment to the team and to the efforts of diving coach Katie Beth Bryant. A well-deserved nod for a job well done last season."
Last year, the women's team won the regular season Mountain West Conference title, going 8-0 (9-1 overall). Meanwhile, the men's team finished fourth in the MWC with a 2-3 mark (4-3). The Utah women went on to win the MWC Championship title as well.
The women's team returns 18 letterwinners from last year. Three of the four individual champions return, including Diver of the Year Kelsey Patterson and Swimmer of the Year Amber Walter. The men's team welcomes back 17 athletes, including four all-conference picks. Andrew Cole leads the returnees after garnering first team all-conference accolades in the 200 back.
"Once again the Mountain West schedule will be highly competitive," said Litzinger. "It is exciting knowing that Utah is always in the mix to win a regular season title, but looming above that title is the Championship and that is where our focus is."
Notes: The Utah women have not lost a MWC dual meet since February, 2004 ... the women have not lost a home meet since February of 2003 ... the Utah Men are the only team to have beaten every team in the MWC, winning the regular season title in 2005.