Utah head coach Beth Launiere announced the Utes' 2010 schedule on Tuesday.
May 4, 2010
SALT LAKE CITY - Ten matchups against schools that qualified for last season's NCAA Tournament will be featured on the 2010 University of Utah volleyball schedule, released by head coach Beth Launiere Tuesday.
Following a 17-12 record with a 10-6 conference mark last season, Utah will continue its tradition of taking on a challenging schedule.
"The Mountain West Conference is going to be very strong this year with a few teams with a lot of experience," Launiere said. "We believe our preseason schedule will prepare us well for the competitiveness of the conference."
Launiere is entering her 21st season as Utah's head coach with a 408-224 (.646) record at the only school in which she has been a head coach.
The Utes will be confronted in 2010 with a schedule full of opponents from premier conferences across the nation, including Big Ten Conference foes Michigan and Northwestern, Ole Miss of the SEC, Oklahoma of the Big XII, Saint Louis of the Atlantic 10 as well as Pac-10 member Arizona State.
"Playing teams such as Michigan and Oklahoma gives us a gauge of how we will compete at the national level," Launiere said. "We're playing a lot of teams that are traditionally in the top 25 nationally."
Utah will host 12 matches at Crimson Court during the 2010 regular season, starting with the annual Utah Classic, Aug. 27-28. The Utes will entertain Utah State and UC Davis.
Utah wraps up its season-opening three-match homestand with a mid-week contest against Utah Valley on Sept. 1, before heading to the Northwestern Challenge in Chicago, Ill., for its first road action of the season. The Utes will take on Morehead State, Ole Miss and the host Wildcats, Sept. 3-4.
The Utes will then head to the Missouri State Tournament in Springfield, Mo., Sept. 10-11 for matches against Missouri State and 2009 NCAA Tournament participants Saint Louis and Oklahoma.
Utah will conclude its early-season tournament action at the Arizona State Tournament, Sept. 17-18 in Phoenix, Ariz. Utah will face Pacific before taking on Michigan, who has reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament the past two seasons. The Utes will play the host Sun Devils in the final match of the event.
Utah then begins Mountain West Conference action with a pair of home matches against Wyoming and reigning champion Colorado State Sept. 23-25.
The opening Deseret First Duel volleyball match of the season against BYU will be played Oct. 1 at Smith Fieldhouse in Provo, Utah. The second Deseret First Duel match is Oct. 23 at Crimson Court.
The NCAA Tournament begins Dec. 2 with the first and second rounds. The NCAA Championship will be hosted at the Sprint Energy Center in Kansas, Mo., Dec. 16-18.
Start times and television coverage for selected matches will be announced at a later date.