Weekly Aggie Update
Utah State's fall sports continue this week with cross country, football, soccer and volleyball all in action.
Aug. 24, 2014 LOGAN, Utah -

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Contact: Doug Hoffman - (435) 797-3714

This Week
Sun., Aug. 31 --- at Tennessee, 5 p.m. (MT) (SEC Network)
• Utah State (0-0) will kickoff its 117th season of college football on Sunday, Aug. 31 at Tennessee (0-0) at 5 p.m. (MT) in the first-ever meeting between the two programs. The game will be televised nationally on the SEC Network (DirecTV Ch. 611, Dish Network Ch. 408, Comcast Ch. 286 in Cache Valley).

Preseason Notes
• Utah State is picked to finish second in the Mountain Division of the Mountain West Conference this season after posting a 9-5 record in 2013, including a 7-1 Mountain West record to win the Mountain Division and advance to the inaugural MW Championship game. USU returns 14 starters (O-6, D-5, S-3) as part of 38 letterwinners (O-17, D-18, S-3) from last year's team that defeated No. 24 Northern Illinois, 21-14, in the 2013 San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl to record back-to-back bowl wins for the first time in school history. Highlighting Utah State's returners is senior quarterback Chuckie Keeton (Houston, Texas/Cypress Creek HS) who was named the Mountain West's Preseason Offensive Player of the Year heading into the 2014 season. As a sophomore in 2012, Keeton earned first-team all-WAC honors. USU also returns three players who earned second-team all-MW accolades in 2013 in senior defensive end B.J. Larsen (Logan, Utah/Logan HS), senior linebacker Zach Vigil (Clearfield, Utah/Clearfield HS) and junior linebacker Kyler Fackrell (Mesa, Ariz./Mesa HS). Returning honorable mention all-league players from a year ago include senior placekicker Nick Diaz (Redondo Beach, Calif./Redondo Union HS), junior punt returner/wide receiver JoJo Natson (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Boyd Anderson HS) and senior safety Brian Suite (Honolulu, Hawaii/Punahou HS).

Contact: Kara Fisher - (435) 797-1361

This Week
Sun., Aug. 31 --- NEBRASKA-OMAHA, 1 p.m.
• Utah State's soccer team (0-2) will host Nebraska-Omaha (1-0) in its home opener on Sunday, Aug. 31 at 1 p.m. USU is 1-0-0 all-time against the Mavericks.

Last Week
L, 1-3 --- at Arkansas
L, 0-2 --- at Missouri State
• Utah State began the 2014 season with a pair of road losses at Arkansas (3-1) and at Missouri State (2-0). Against the Razorbacks, senior defender Taryn Rose scored the only goal for USU in the 89th minute on a long free kick to make the final score 3-1. Junior goalkeeper Jeannie Woller faced 17 shots, while making four saves. Against the Bears, USU had a 15-13 shots advantage, as well as a 4-3 corner kicks edge.

Contact: Zach Fisher - (435) 797-2066

This Week
UTAH STATE INVITATIONAL, sponsored by Gossner Foods Fri., Aug. 29 --- IDAHO STATE, 7 p.m.
Sat., Aug. 30 --- OREGON STATE, 10 a.m.
Sat., Aug. 30 --- ST. MARY'S, 7 p.m.
• Utah State's volleyball team (0-0) will begin the 2014 season by hosting the third annual Utah State Invitational, sponsored by Gossner Foods. USU will begin the tournament by hosting Idaho State (0-0) on Friday, Aug. 29 at 7 p.m. USU will then conclude the tournament with a pair of matches on Saturday, Aug. 30 against Oregon State (0-0) at 10 a.m., and versus St. Mary's at 7 p.m. Oregon State and St. Mary's will play the first match of the tournament on Friday at 4 p.m. Other Saturday matches include Idaho State vs. St. Mary's at 12 p.m, and Idaho State vs. Oregon State at 4 p.m. All-time, USU is 22-28 versus ISU, 1-1 against OSU and 0-6-1 versus SMC.

Preseason Notes
• Utah State, who is picked to finish third in the Mountain West this season according to the league's coaches, returns five starters and 10 letterwinners from last year's squad that logged a 20-11 overall and 13-7 mark in their first season in the Mountain West to finish third in the conference standings. It was USU's second 20-win season in a row and third in the last four years. USU returns its lone all-Mountain West honoree in junior opposite side hitter Elle Brainard, along with four other senior starters in outside hitter Rachel Orr, setter Paige Neves, middle blocker Kaitlyn VanHoff and libero Ashlan Rogers-Court.

Contact: Mitch Praxl - (435) 797-8584

This Week
Sat., Aug. 30 --- AGGIE INVITATIONAL, 9 a.m.
• Utah State's men and women's cross country teams will begin its 2014 season on Saturday, Aug. 30 when it hosts the Aggie Invitational at the Innovation Campus Wellness Park, which is located at 1498 North 800 East in Logan. The men will run at 9 a.m., while the women will race at 9:30.

Preseason Notes
• Utah State's men's cross country team has won six conference championships in the last nine years (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011) and returns seven men from last year's team that finished sixth at the Mountain West Championships, including senior Eric Shellhorn who was named first-team all-MW after placing sixth individually. Other USU men returning from a year ago who competed in the MW Championship include seniors Jacob Barton and Mike Bills, juniors Tom Derr, Kade Jensen and Chris Martinez, and sophomore Colby Wilson.

• Utah State's women's cross country team finished fifth at the 2013 Mountain West Country Championships and won Western Athletic Conference titles in 2006 and 2008. USU's women return four athletes who competed in last year's MW Championship in juniors Amanda Stoudt and Jacqueline Winterton and sophomores Joanna Boyd and Tori Parkinson.

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Utah State University Department of Athletics 7400 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322 Main Phone (435) 797-1850