Eleven televised matches and nine games against NCAA Tournament teams from a season ago highlight the Stanford men's soccer schedule, which the reigning conference champions announced on Tuesday in conjunction with the Pac-12 Networks' release of its 2015 television picks.
Stanford is coming off a historic 2014 campaign, including the program's first league title since 2001, a No. 1 NSCAA ranking, its most wins (13) since 2002 and its best winning percentage (.763) since 2001.
The team, which finished fourth in the nation in RPI, went 13-3-3 overall and 6-1-3 in conference to advance to its second consecutive NCAA Tournament. Stanford has posted back-to-back seasons of double-digit wins for the first time since 2001-02.
Stanford opens its 2015 season with a pair of tough road tests at UC Santa Barbara (August 28) and Louisville (August 31). The Cardinal is 14-5-2 all-time against the Gauchos and has won three straight in the series, including a 4-1 victory on The Farm last September 9.
The last day in August will mark the first meeting in program history between the Cardinal and Cardinals. Louisville finished 11-8-3 in 2014 and advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
Stanford's 2015 home opener comes on Friday, September 4 against Northeastern (7 p.m.) and begins a stretch of three matches at home in the span of seven days. The Cardinal kicks off its live television action at Cagan Stadium two days later when its hosts VCU on September 6 (3 p.m.) before welcoming San Jose State to campus for another televised affair on Thursday, September 10 (6 p.m.).
Stanford's final nonconference road match comes on Sunday, September 13 in Dallas, Texas at SMU.
All but two of Stanford's 10 league contests will be televised on Pac-12 Networks, including the first four in a row. The Cardinal's defense of its conference crown begins on Sunday, October 4 at rival California (4 p.m.).
Stanford is the only team in the country returning multiple NSCAA/Continental Tire First Team All-Americans in 2015 in forward Jordan Morris and left back and captain Brandon Vincent.
Morris and Vincent are joined by two of the country's best freshmen from 2014 in Corey Baird and Tomas Hilliard-Arce. Both made Soccer America All-Freshman squads, Baird was on the NSCAA/Continental Tire All-Far West Region Second Team and Hilliard-Arce made that organization's All-Far West Region Third Team.
The Cardinal, which welcomes the program's third straight top-15 recruiting class, also returns four of its top five goal-scorers and every minute in goal for a team which led the league in goals against average for the first time since 2002.