Nov. 15, 2004
PARK RIDGE, IL - A record six Big Ten teams earned berths to the 2004 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship as announced today by the Division I Men's Soccer Committee. Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern and Ohio State will all compete in first round action on either November 19 or 20, while Indiana and Penn State receive first-round byes after being awarded the No. 2 and 10 seeds, respectively. This marks the first time in League history that six squads have been selected, as the previous record of four was set in 2001 when Indiana, Michigan State, Penn State and Ohio State all competed in the NCAA Championship. The Big Ten led all conferences with its six selections, while the ACC and Big East have five representatives.
Indiana (14-4-1) was awarded the No. 2 seed overall and will host a second round game. The Hoosiers are making their 18th straight NCAA appearance and will square off against the winner of first-round action between Michigan (10-7-4) and Akron (13-4-3) in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines, earning their second consecutive NCAA postseason appearance, defeated Akron, 4-0, during the regular season.
Penn State (10-4-7) enters the championship as the No. 10 seed and will host the winner of the first round game between Tulsa and Michigan State on Tuesday, November 23. The Spartans, making their 10th NCAA appearance, will travel to Tulsa for their opening-round game. Michigan State earned its place in this year's championship after defeating Northwestern, 1-0, to claim its first-ever Big Ten Men's Soccer Championship.
In other first round action, Ohio State (10-6-2) will make its third postseason appearance as it hosts Memphis (16-3-1), the Conference USA champion, while Northwestern (14-5-2) will be making its first NCAA appearance in program history when the Wildcats welcome Western Illinois (11-5-1) to Evanston.
The 46th annual NCAA Division I Men's College Cup will be played December 10 and 12 at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Indiana, Michigan State and Wisconsin are the only Big Ten teams to have won NCAA Championship titles. The defending NCAA champion Hoosiers have won six titles, Michigan State claimed two back-to-back titles in 1967 and 1968 and the Badgers won their only men's soccer title in 1995.