BOULDER — The University of Colorado Volleyball team will be featured on the Pac-12 Networks a total of 15 times, the conference announced Monday with the release of the schedules league-wide.
Overall, the Buffs will host two tournaments prior to the start of conference play and the tough lineup includes 13 teams and 19 overall matches against teams that advanced to the 2013 NCAA Tournament.
“Releasing our slate for the upcoming season is always exciting as it signals the start of our season is right around the corner,” CU coach Liz Krizta said. “We have a strong mix of non-conference and Pac-12 match-ups that will make for an exhilarating season this fall.”
The Buffs will play in four tournaments to open the season, two at home sandwiched by trips to DeKalb, Ill., to open the season at the Northern Illinois Invitational and then to close out the non-conference schedule in Omaha, Neb., at the Creighton Classic. In between the Buffs will host both the Omni Classic and Omni Invitational on back-to-back weekends.
“The non-conference tournaments we are competing in serve to prepare this squad for the rigors of the Pac-12 season,” Kritza said.
The Buffs head to Illinois on August 29-30, where the Buffs will face Northwestern, Presbyterian and host Northern Illinois to open the season. The home schedule starts with the Omni Classic, in which Georgia Southern, Pittsburgh and Portland State visit Boulder on Sept. 5-6, followed by Butler, Idaho State and Robert Morris in the Omni Invitational on Sept. 12-13. Non-league play comes to an end with match-ups against Illinois, South Dakota and host Creighton on Sept. 19-20.
Utah will visit Boulder to open the conference season on Thursday, Sept. 25, in the first game televised by the Pac-12 Networks. In all, the Buffs will be on television for 15 of its 20 conference games, including nine of its 10 home games. The Buffs first road Pac-12 game will be at Oregon on Sept. 27.
“The Pac-12 Networks coverage for volleyball is remarkable,” Kritza said. “The visibility for all teams across the entire league is greater than ever before, and it will do wonders for the sport to increase the access the public has to view top level volleyball.”
The Arizona schools visit Boulder the following week, Arizona State on Oct. 3 and Arizona on Oct. 5, with both games on television, followed by a trip to Los Angeles to face Southern California Oct. 10 and UCLA on Oct. 12. With both LA games on TV, the string of televised matches stretches to six when Stanford (Oct. 17) and California (Oct. 19) both visit the Coors Events Center. Next up is a trip to Washington, first to Pullman to play Washington State on Oct. 24, and then to Seattle for a televised match against Washington on Oct. 26.
The Buffs stay on the road to end October with a Halloween match at Arizona and to open November with a match with Arizona State on Nov. 2, both televised. The LA schools then visit Boulder with USC coming on Nov. 6, followed by UCLA on Nov. 9. A four-match home stand concludes with Washington (Nov. 13) and Washington State (Nov. 16), ending a stretch of seven straight matches on the Pac-12 Networks.
The Buffs then head to the Bay Area to play California on Nov. 21 and Stanford on Nov. 22. Senior Day will be held against Oregon State on Nov. 26 and the regular season will come to an end with a post-Thanksgiving match-up with Utah in Salt Lake City on Nov. 28.
“We are excited for the challenge of this upcoming season and look forward to continue to growing the program and climbing the ranks of the Pac-12, the top volleyball league in the country.”
The Buffs return four starters from the 2013 team including senior OH Taylor Simpson and juniors S Nicole Edelman and OH Alexis Austin, as well as sophomore DS Cierra Simpson. The Buffs will add a talented freshman trio to the mix with Anna Pferfferle, Stephanie Shadley and Gabby Simpson, who joins her two sisters on the squad.