The University of Minnesota volleyball program has announced its 2024 schedule. Minnesota will compete in 10 non-conference matches before beginning a 20-match Big Ten conference schedule on Sept. 25 vs. Wisconsin. Game times and broadcast information for all matches will follow at a later time.

The second year of the Keegan Cook era in Minneapolis kicks off with the inaugural Intersport Women’s Volleyball Showcase, which will be contested Sept. 1-2, 2024. Minnesota will face Stanford while Texas will play Wisconsin on Sept. 1. Matchups the following day will feature Wisconsin-Stanford and Texas-Minnesota. Two of the four games will be broadcast on FOX while the remaining two will air on FS1.

Up next for the ‘U’ will be the Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge. Minnesota will play at Baylor on Friday, Sept. 6 in Waco, Texas. The match is set for 7 p.m. CT. They’ll complete the challenge on Saturday against TCU at 4 p.m. The Gophers won the Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge each of the last two years, defeating both Baylor and TCU in Fort Worth, Texas in 2022 and Minneapolis in 2023. Mckenna Wucherer was named Tournament MVP in 2023. Wisconsin is the other Big Ten team in the challenge, and they’ll play TCU on Friday, Baylor on Saturday.

Minnesota will then come home for their first match at Maturi Pavilion of the season. They’ll take on crosstown opponent St. Thomas on Tuesday, Sept. 10. The ‘U’ will stay home for the Diet Coke Classic on Sept. 12-13 when they host an opponent to be decided and Auburn. They’ll complete preseason competition Sept. 19-21 in Green Bay, Wis., with matches against Green Bay, North Dakota and Chicago State.

The ‘U’ will begin its 20-match conference slate on Wednesday, Sept. 25 with the Border Battle at home against Wisconsin, one of two matchups against UW on the year. They’ll then take on Purdue on Saturday, Sept. 28 at Maturi Pavilion. The Gophers then head to California for the first time in Big Ten play the next weekend, taking on UCLA on Friday, Oct. 4 and USC on Saturday, Oct. 5 in Los Angeles. Minnesota is 2-4 against UCLA (last matchup in 2016) and 2-4-1 all-time against USC all-time, with their last meeting coming in the 2017 Sweet 16.

Minnesota will be back home for the second weekend in October with matches on tap with Indiana and Maryland on Friday, Oct. 11 and Saturday, Oct. 12, respectively. After that, they’ll head to the East Coast for matches at Rutgers (Oct. 18) and Penn State (Oct. 20). Following their trip east, Minnesota will have a quick turnaround with a Wednesday home match against Northwestern, their second of four Wednesday tilts on the year. To complete the first half of Big Ten play, they’ll head to Columbus, Ohio, to take on Ohio State on Sunday, Oct. 27.

A road trip to Michigan is on tap in the first weekend of November as the ‘U’ takes on Michigan State on Friday, Nov. 1 and Michigan on Sunday, Nov. 3. Following their third straight road match, Minnesota welcomes two more West Coast opponents to the Pav, as Washington (Thursday, Nov. 7) and Oregon (Saturday, Nov. 9) come to town. The Gophers are 2-2 all-time against Washington, with their last matchup being in 2011. Against Oregon, Minnesota is 6-4, winning the last four matches in the series.

The lone matchup on the year with Nebraska will take place on Thursday, Nov. 14 in Lincoln, Neb. The Huskers are coming off a Big Ten Championship in 2023 and an appearance in the national championship game. After NU, the Gophers host Michigan on Saturday, Nov. 17 before going to Wisconsin for another Border Battle on Wednesday, Nov. 20.

The regular season concludes with home matches against Iowa (Saturday, Nov. 23) and Ohio State (Friday, Nov. 29) sandwiching a road match at Illinois (Wednesday, Nov. 27).

The three teams Minnesota will play twice each in 2024 are Michigan, Ohio State and Wisconsin. At home only, the Gophers will host Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Northwestern, Oregon, Purdue and Washington. They’ll play Illinois, Michigan State, Nebraska, Penn State, Rutgers, UCLA and USC on the road only.

In 2023, the ‘U’ went 17-13 (12-8 Big Ten) and went to the NCAA Tournament’s Round of 32. The Gophers won an NCAA Tournament match for the ninth straight season and finished fifth in the conference standings in year one under head coach Keegan Cook. The program has made 24 of the last NCAA Tournaments and has had 28 straight winning seasons, dating back to 1995. The Gophers have won 10-or-more Big Ten games in every season except for one dating back to 1999. The program has finished in the top five of the Big Ten standings every year since 2015.

Single game ticket information will be available in the near future.

Schedule Notes:
-Matches against teams that finished in the AVCA Top-25: 10
-Matches against teams that finished in the AVCA Top-10: 6
-Home matches against teams that finished in the AVCA Top-25: 3
-Road/Neutral matches against teams that finished in the AVCA Top-25: 7
-Matches against 2023 NCAA Tournament Teams: 12
-Matches against 2023 Sweet 16 Teams: 8
-The Gophers will compete in the first ever Intersport Volleyball Showcase to open the season in Milwaukee on Sept. 1-2, 2024.
-Minnesota plays in the Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge for the fourth year in-a-row. The Gophers have gone 4-0 in the last two years, winning at TCU and in Minneapolis.
-The Gophers take on defending champion Texas on Monday, Sept. 2. Minnesota is 5-8 all-time vs. Texas and last won vs. UT in Austin in 2017.
-Minnesota opens conference play at home against Wisconsin. The Gophers swept UW in their Big Ten home opener in 2022, which was also their last home match against the Badgers.
-Conference opponents Minnesota plays twice: Michigan, Ohio State, Wisconsin

(info and photo courtesy of Gopher Sports)

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