Oct. 8, 2010
NORMAN, Okla. -- University of Oklahoma vice president for intercollegiate athletics programs and director of athletics Joe Castiglione and head women's gymnastics coach K.J. Kindler announced OU's 2011 schedule Friday.
The reigning Big 12 champions and NCAA runners-up will face five teams that competed in the 2010 NCAA Championships including Arkansas in OU’s home opener on Jan. 7 at 7:00 p.m.
"We know our schedule will be extremely challenging this season,” Kindler said. “We are meeting with teams from major conferences including the Pac-10, Big 10, Big 12, SEC and the EAGL. Our team will need to be on its game, week-in and week-out, no breaks."
The Sooners will compete against a total of nine teams that ended last season ranked in the top-25, including Nebraska, Oregon State and Michigan who all finished in the top-10.
OU was chosen as one of six host sites for the 2011 NCAA Regional Championships, competition will begin on April 2 at 4:00 p.m. Each regional site will host six teams that will be announced on Monday, March 21, following the conference tournaments.
"We are honored to host the Regional Championship in Norman this season,” Kindler said. “Our fans have created a great atmosphere at Lloyd Noble for the competitors and our crowds continue to increase in size each year.
“Six phenomenal programs from across the country will be represented and I know the Sooner fans will give them an enthusiastic welcome,” Kindler said. “In addition, the starting time has been moved forward to 4 p.m. to allow for families and young gymnastics enthusiasts to enjoy the competition."
The Sooners will host five regular-season meets along with the NCAA Regional, Arkansas (Jan. 7), Oregon State, Denver and Centenary (Jan. 21), Missouri (Feb. 18), Ohio State, Illinois and TWU (March 4) and Michigan State (March 11).
“At home, we will introduce Sooner fans to the team against a top-notch Arkansas squad,” Kindler said. “We are hosting two quadrangular meets, ‘Beauty and The Beast’ and ‘Senior Night’ and we are excited to see the crowd’s response from last year's Super Six appearance and runner-up finish.“
The women’s gymnastics squad co-hosts “Beauty and the Beast” night with the wrestling team on Jan. 7 and will hold “Senior Night” on March 11.
OU will hit the road for six regular-season match-ups against N.C. State (Jan. 14), TWU (Jan. 23), Washington (Jan. 28), Nebraska (Feb. 6), Iowa State (Feb. 11) and Michigan (Feb. 26).
“Our road schedule is a tough one,” Kindler said. “Michigan, Nebraska, NC State, Iowa State and Washington have tremendous support and are all great at home. Our road schedule certainly tests us for post season competition.”
OU will compete for its fourth-straight Big 12 Championship in Columbia, Mo., on March 19 at 2:00 p.m.
The 2011 NCAA Championships will be held April 14-16 in Cleveland, Ohio as the Sooners look to make back-to-back Super Six appearances.