Utah Volleyball Unveils 2021 Schedule
SALT LAKE CITY – Ready for the return to a full season, the Utah volleyball program is one step closer to the fall campaign after the Pac-12 Conference announced the 2021 schedule Wednesday afternoon. Utah will see 13 of its Pac-12 matches televised on the Pac-12 Networks, while the non-conference slate includes five teams who competed in last season's NCAA Tournament and two teams who had the year prior before being held out of the spring season.
"First and foremost, we are excited to get back to a normal schedule for the 2021 season," said Utah head coach Beth Launiere. "Not only do we have our usual strong PAC-12 schedule, but we are back playing non-conference teams that we had missed in 2020. This year's non-conference schedule is all I could hope for in what is still a challenging scheduling environment."
Launiere continued, "We are playing local teams BYU, Utah Valley and Weber State, and hosting the annual Utah Classic that includes Cal Poly, San Diego and Hawaii. We are especially excited to have a match at Nebraska followed by a match at Boise State, which will be nice for our players from Idaho. It is a strong schedule that fits my philosophy of playing a schedule that challenges us to be the best we can be. I couldn't be more excited for the 2021 season!"
Following the annual Red vs. White Match on Saturday, Aug. 21, the Utah volleyball team will open the season with a quick drive down to Orem, Utah. The Utes and Utah Valley are set for the season opener at Lockhart Arena on Friday, Aug. 27 before Utah Valley makes the return trip the next day to play Utah at the Jon M. Huntsman Center.
The Utes will stay in Salt Lake City over Labor Day weekend as the squad hosts the Utah Classic on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 3-4. Fans will be in for a treat as the stacked field includes San Diego, Cal Poly and Hawaii. San Diego is coming off a postseason berth from the spring, while Cal Poly and Hawaii did not compete last season, but had both been tournament teams in 2019.
The final home match of non-conference play will come against Weber State (Sept. 9) before Utah hits the road for the next five matches. Two of the three final three stops before Pac-12 play will be at Nebraska (Sept. 11), which is coming off an NCAA Regional Final run, followed by a stop at Boise State (Sept. 13). The Utes will then close out non-conference play with a trip to Provo, taking on BYU (Sept. 16) at Smith Fieldhouse.
Utah will begin Pac-12 play on the road, first traveling to take on Washington (Sept. 22) and then having a quick turnaround against Colorado (Sept. 24) in Boulder, Colo. Utah is set to make its way back to the friendly confines of the Huntsman Center to host Oregon State (Oct. 1) and Oregon (Oct. 3) in the conference home openers after being on the road for three weeks.
Utah will hit the road again and head to Los Angeles for matches against USC (Oct. 8) and UCLA (Oct. 10), before heading back a week later with matches against Stanford (Oct. 15) in Palo Alto and California (Oct. 17) in Berkeley. The Utes will then alternate home and away weekends for a month, beginning with Arizona State (Oct. 22) and Arizona (Oct. 24) in Salt Lake City.
The team will take a trip to Oregon (Oct. 29) and Oregon State (Oct. 31), before hosting UCLA (Nov. 5) and USC (Nov. 7) the following weekend. The final road matches of the regular season will be in Tucson, Ariz., against Arizona (Nov. 12) and Tempe, Ariz., against Arizona State (Nov. 14).
Closing out the regular season with four-straight home matches, Utah is set to host California (Nov. 18), Stanford (Nov. 21), Washington State (Nov. 24) and Colorado (Nov. 27) before postseason action begins.
NCAA Tournament competition begins with the first and second rounds running Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 2-4. For a full look at the 2021 Utah volleyball schedule, click here.