• UMass opens the 2014 season in front of a national television audience, making the trip out west to face Utah Valley on Saturday at 9:30 p.m. ET (7:30 p.m. MT).
2014 SEASON MARKS NO. 84 IN PROGRAM HISTORY
• UMass enters the season with an all-time record of 497-482-109 (.507) in 83 years of varsity soccer. The Minutemen have won six Atlantic 10 Conference titles and made three NCAA Tournament appearances (2001, 2007 & 2008). The high-water mark in program history came in 2007 when the squad advanced to the NCAA College Cup Semifinals in Cary, N.C.
2014 MARKS THE FIRST SEASON WITHOUT LONGTIME COACH Sam Koch
• After a two-year battle with sinus cancer, longtime head coach Sam Koch passed away on July 20 at his home in Hadley, Mass. Koch, 59, compiled a 222-182-45 record in 23 seasons at UMass, advancing to the NCAA postseason three times (2001, 2007 and 2008), including the 2007 NCAA College Cup Semifinals. He also coached six seasons at Stanford University from 1984-89 and went 58-53-16. His 280 career victories entering the fall placed him 21st among active Division I head coaches and 50th all-time in Division I history.
• In addition to the NCAA tourney success, the Minutemen won four regular-season Atlantic 10 titles, two Atlantic 10 Tournament titles. During his tenure in Amherst, the 29-year head coaching veteran produced two All-Americans in Jeff Deren (2001-02) and Zack Simmons (2007), three Academic All-Americans, one Academic All-American of the Year, a two-time Atlantic 10 Offensive Player of the Year, an Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Year, an Atlantic 10 Midfielder of the Year, two Atlantic 10 Rookies of the year, two Atlantic 10 Tournament MVPs, 27 All-Region selections, 62 All-Atlantic 10 players, 29 Academic All-Atlantic 10 honorees, two players to the Atlantic 10 All-Conference Teams, a two-time Atlantic 10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year and 23 Atlantic 10 All-Tournament picks.
• Koch recorded 13 winning seasons with five-straight from 1999-2003, the most since UMass had six straight from 1969-74. Koch's teams notched 13 10-win seasons in Amherst, while the program had only managed that feat three times in the school's history prior to his arrival.
Devin O'Neill NAMED INTERIM HEAD COACH
• Veteran coach and current staff member Devin O'Neill has been named the Interim Head Coach of the Massachusetts men's soccer program.
• O'Neill, who was the Minutemen's top assistant under Sam Koch the past two years, has a 92-90 college head coaching record over 11 seasons. The 2014 campaign will be his 21st at the college level.
• The West Springfield, Mass. native had previous head coaching stops at East Carolina (1999-2002) and Gettysburg College (2003-09). He came to UMass following a two-year stint at Bradley in which the Braves participated in the NCAA Tournament each season.
• O'Neill graduated from Middlebury in 1991 and received his master's degree from Springfield College in 1993.
ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICAN SCHWARTZ ACTIVE SCORING LEADER ON TEAM
• Senior MF Josh Schwartz enters the season with 13 goals and six assists for 32 points in his career. He also has three game-winning goals. All of those figures are currently tops among the active players on the roster.
• Schwartz was named to the CoSIDA Academic All-America Second Team and Jewish Sports Review First Team All-America last season. He carries a 3.957 GPA in Biology/Pre Med and was named the UMass Fall Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
4-GAME, 10-DAY ROAD TRIP TO START 2014
• UMass may be the most well-traveled team in the country this season, due in large part to it's season-opening road trip. The Minutemen will play four games in 10 days, beginning Saturday at Utah Velley. From there, the team will spend four days in the San Francisco Bay Area for games with San Jose State and Santa Clara, before heading three hours south to San Luis Obispo to face Cal Poly on Sept. 7.
• The road games will continue once they return to the east coast with a road trip to Boston University on Sept. 13. The Minutemen will not play their home opener until hosting Fairfield on Sept. 19
UMASS PICKED 11TH IN A-10 PRESEASON POLL
• UMass was picked to finish 11th out of 13 teams in the Atlantic 10 Conference preseason coaches poll. Defending regular-season champ Saint Louis was picked first, followed by last year's tournament winner George Mason. Last season, the Minutemen were picked seventh before finishing in a tie for seventh.