PISCATAWAY, NJ – The Rutgers men’s soccer team has unveiled its schedule for the 2003 fall season. In all, Rutgers will play 18 matches, as well as two preseason contests.
Rutgers will host eight matches at Yurcak Field, while traveling to its opponents for 10 matches and playing two exhibition contests at a neutral site. Seven of Rutgers’ opponents in 2003 – UCLA (1); Connecticut (5); Boston College (6); St. John’s (9); Indiana (11); William & Mary (16) and Notre Dame (received votes) – were either ranked or received votes in the final 2002 National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) poll. Of those seven matches, six will be played away from Yurcak Field, with Connecticut being the only home contest. In addition, Rutgers will face nine teams who reached the 2002 NCAA Championships, with six of its ten regular season road matches against last season’s NCAA Tournament teams.
The Scarlet Knights will close their regular season with two tough games out West, highlighted by a match up with defending national champion UCLA in Los Angeles (10/31), before a battle with Cal State Northridge in Northridge, CA (11/2). Last season Rutgers played UCLA to a 1-1 tie at the Philips/adidas Rutgers Soccer Classic.
RU will tune up for the regular season by competing in the IPFW Soccer Showcase in Ft. Wayne, IN. The Scarlet Knights will face Michigan State (8/22) and Indiana (8/24). RU faced Indiana in its 2002 season-opener, playing the then top-ranked Hoosiers to a 0-0 tie in Bloomington, IN.
For the 18th consecutive year, Rutgers will host one of the premier in-season tournaments in the nation – the Philips/adidas Soccer Classic – Oct. 3-5. This year, the Scarlet Knights welcome San Diego State, St. Mary’s and St. John’s to Piscataway, NJ. Rutgers will face San Diego State (10/3) and St. Mary’s (10/5) in the weekend event.
Other highlights of the season include matches with NCAA Quarterfinalists Connecticut (9/20) and Boston College (10/17).
Rutgers completed its 2002 season 8-8-3 overall with a 5-4-1 mark in the BIG EAST, losing to Connecticut in the BIG EAST Quarterfinals.