Laura DeBruler and the Fighting Illini will appear at least five times on the BTN this fall.
July 30, 2009
Chicago, Ill. -
The Big Ten Network has released its fall Olympic sports schedule and Illinois will be well represented. The Illini will appear five times in volleyball and three times in women's soccer. For the first time, the BTN will also show both the men's and women's Big Ten cross country championships as well.
Huff Hall will buzzing during the first weekend of the Big Ten volleyball season and the Big Ten Network will be there. Kevin Hambly's squad, which finished the 2008 season ranked 11th in the country, tackles two-time defending national champion Penn State live on the BTN on Sept. 26 at 7 p.m.
Last year, four Big Ten teams were seeded in the top 10 in the NCAA Tournament and the BTN has strived to show as many matches as it can between those schools. The Illini, the ninth national seed, tackles Minnesota, who was the sixth seed, in Champaign on Friday night, Oct. 16. The match will be shown taped delayed on Sunday night Oct. 18. The network also plans to show Penn State at Minnesota on Oct. 11, Purdue (10th seed last year) at Penn State on Oct. 24, Minnesota at Penn State Oct. 30 and Purdue at Minnesota on Nov. 8. The network could also choose to air the Illinois at Minnesota match during its wild card weekend on Nov. 28.
The Illini will appear three other times on the network, live Wednesday night matches against Northwestern - on Oct. 14 at Huff Hall and Nov. 25 at Welsh-Ryan Arena -- and a taped delayed match at Ohio State, which will air on Nov. 15.
The BTN will air 10 women's soccer matches and at least three will feature Janet Rayfield's Illini, who like the volleyball team, reached the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2008. Two of those matches will be against the defending co-Big Ten champions, Minnesota and Penn State. Illinois meets the Gophers on Sunday, Sept. 27, in its annual Soccerfest match, which will air at 3 pm that day. Illinois plays at the Nittany Lions in a live BTN match on Sunday, Oct. 25 at 1 p.m.. The network also plans to air the Illini's home game against Michigan State on Oct. 30 with a possibility of a wild card game for the Illini on Nov. 6.
The Big Ten's Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships will air on Sunday, Nov. 1 beginning at 9:45 a.m. The Fighting Illini women placed 10th in the nation last season, while the men's team is led by Jeremy Stevens, who posted three top-10 finishes in 2008.