Nine NCAA Tournament Squads, Defending National Champ and Runner-up Highlight Men’s Soccer Schedule


RICHMOND, Va. – VCU Soccer Head Coach Dave Giffard believes it's important to challenge his team with the best competition in the country, and this fall's schedule is no different.

The Rams will face 10 teams that finished the 2014 season ranked in the coaches' poll, including three of the nation's top-five teams. The Rams will open the season with eight of the first 10 games against teams that played in the NCAA Tournament, including the defending National Champion, Virginia, and UCLA, who was the national runner-up.

"Once again, we will be challenging ourselves against the very best competition that college soccer has to offer. It would be very difficult to improve upon the schedule each of the last two years, but it's possible that we have done so with the 2015 version," Giffard said. "I'm also excited for our fans as we have some great games at home this year including Akron, Coastal, Georgetown and Virginia. The staff, players, and I are all looking forward to an exciting fall with a young but hungry team."

VCU will open the fall schedule with an exhibition match at Sports Backers Stadium against NC State on August 22.

In the last weekend of August (28-30), the Rams will kick off the regular season with NCAA Tournament team, Akron (Aug. 28) at Sports Backers Stadium, before turning around to entertain another NCAA Tournament team, Coastal Carolina (Aug. 30).

VCU will hit the road for the first time on Sept. 4 when they travel to the west coast for the first of two trips, to face California and Stanford (Sept. 6).

On Sept. 11, Giffard and his team will begin a four-game home stand with Hartford followed by Jacksonville two days later (Sept. 13).

The Rams play host to 2014 Elite Eight team, Georgetown, on Sept. 17 before rounding out the home stand with the defending National Champion, Virginia on Sept. 22. This is the third consecutive year, VCU will play the defending national champion, and the second time at Sports Backers Stadium.

The Rams travel back to California on Sept. 25 to face the national runner-up, UCLA, making this the third time in six years, VCU has played both the defending champions and runner-up.

VCU will close out September in Norfolk to play long-standing rival, Old Dominion on Sept. 30.

October is welcomed by the Atlantic 10 Conference schedule with the Rams facing 2014 A10 Champion, George Mason, on Oct. 3. VCU will play its A10 home opener against St. Bonaventure on Oct. 7 and three days later Davidson will travel to the River City.

VCU will return to the road on Oct. 14 to play at La Salle in Philadelphia and at Saint Louis (Oct. 21), with a home game with Duquesne sandwiched in between (Oct. 17).

The Rams conclude the 2015 schedule with a pair of home games against George Washington (Oct. 24) and William & Mary (Oct. 28), before making the last road trip of the season to Dayton (Nov. 7).

The 2015 Atlantic 10 Championship is scheduled for Nov. 12-15 in Fairfax, Va.