The NCAA volleyball season starts on Jan. 22, less than two weeks from now, but the Pac-12 still has not released its schedule yet.
However, sources say the conference will follow the Big Ten model of having its teams play the same team twice in the same weekend in the same location.
For example, that would mean Utah hosting Arizona on a Friday, and then again a day or two later. That reduces travel because normally Pac-12 teams play home-and-homes against each team and have to travel to two different schools on their road trips.
Pac-12 volleyball teams will not be playing non-conference matches this season. However, Arizona is scheduled to scrimmage New Mexico State on Jan. 16, its lone tune-up before the regular season.
Pac-12 softball teams will play non-conference games, however. The conference season is expected to be a bit different though, as sources say it will consist of four-game series with a doubleheader instead of straight three-game series.
That means playing one game on Friday, two on Saturday and one on Sunday. That presumably is the Pac-12’s attempt at ensuring its teams play as many games as possible in a safe environment.
Since the 2020 conference schedule wasn’t played, the Pac-12 will re-use it this season. That means Arizona will host Oregon State, Cal, UCLA and Utah and face Washington, Oregon, ASU and Stanford on the road.
However, nothing is official yet and everything is subject to change.
Arizona was scheduled to play in two major early-season tournaments away from Tucson, but instead will host smaller tournaments at home, per sources. One of those early-season events—the Mary Nutter Classic in Palm Springs—was cancelled.
Arizona is hoping to allow some fans into Hillenbrand Stadium to begin the season, but the recent spike in COVID-19 cases in Pima County could make that untenable.
The season start date is Feb. 12.