Top non-football games to watch

Nick Castillo

Every fall, Texas students pack Darrel K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium to watch the Longhorn football team. Football is certainly king in Texas, especially on the 40 Acres, but over the last few years, while the football team has struggled, many other Longhorn teams have continued to excel. If football just isn’t your thing or you’re looking for something to do on a bye week, there are plenty of other ways to get your burnt orange fill this fall. Here is our list of the top non-football games to watch:

Volleyball:  Arizona vs. Texas, Sept. 12

Coming off of a final four run that ended with a disappointing semi-final loss to Wisconsin, the women’s volleyball team opens up the season with four road games. Texas’ first home game is against the Arizona Wildcats in the 26 West Longhorn Classic. Also competing in the tournament are Florida A&M and Central Florida. All games will be held at Gregory Gymnasium.

Volleyball: Texas vs. West Virginia, Sept. 24

The Longhorns went undefeated through the Big 12 last season, and Texas will look to extend its conference winning streak when they travel to West Virginia to open Big 12 play against the Mountaineers.

The game will be broadcast on ESPNU on Sept. 24 at 6 p.m.

Volleyball: Zheijiang (Chinese Club Team) vs. Texas, Oct. 27

The Longhorns will welcome Zheijiang, one of the top Chinese women’s club teams, to America as they meet in the first of back-to-back exhibition games in late October. The rare international exhibition matchup will give Texas a chance to play against a talented opponent with a slightly different style of play than what North American volleyball fans are used to.


Women’s Basketball: Texas vs. Stanford, Nov. 20

Head coach Karen Aston had much more success in her second year at Texas, leading the women’s basketball team to an impressive 22-12 finish and a second round appearance in the NCAA tournament. The Longhorns will look to build off of last season’s success with their toughest test coming early on. Texas will play the Stanford Cardinals in a non-conference play as they travel to Palo Alto, Cal., who made yet another Final Four appearance last season.

Men’s Basketball: Texas vs. Connecticut, Nov. 30

After a surprising 2013-2014 season where the Longhorns went 24-11 and made the NCAA tournament, expectations are high for Texas’ 2014-15 season. The already lofty expectations ballooned after highly ranked recruit Myles Turner decided to come to Texas over Kansas, with many touting Rick Barnes’ squad as a preseason top-10 team.

One of the Longhorns first real tests will come early when they play the defending national champion Connecticut Huskies in the 2K Classic in Storrs, Connecticut. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN2.

Men’s Basketball: Texas vs. Kentucky, Dec. 5

Less than a week after taking on the reigning national champions, the Longhorns will take on the national runner-up when Texas travels to play Kentucky in the Big 12/SEC challenge. Fresh off an impressive NCAA tournament run, coach Calipari and his Wildcats will be one of Texas’ biggest challenges throughout a tough non-conference schedule.

Women’s Basketball: Texas A&M vs. Texas, Dec. 21

The Longhorns will face long-time rival Texas A&M in the Big 12/SEC Challenge. The Aggies, who made it to the Elite Eight of last year’s NCAA tournament, have continued to grow as a powerhouse in women’s basketball since joining the SEC, so Texas can expect another tough contest when they head to Little Rock for the neutral site game.