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Utah fans who can't imagine a season without playing rival BYU won't have to do so, at least for the next couple of years.
Utah and BYU announced Thursday their series will continue in both football and basketball despite Utah's move to the Pac-10 in 2011.
Utah will play in Provo on Sept. 17, 2011 and the Cougars will visit Rice-Eccles Stadium on Sept. 15, 2012. The game traditionally has been held in November, but keeping the later date wasn't possible with the Utes' move to the Pac-10.
In basketball, Utah and BYU have signed a four-year home-and-home series featuring one game a year on the second Saturday of December. The first game is scheduled for Dec. 10, 2011 in Salt Lake City.
As expected, the Utes are canceling a three-game football series with Boise State in 2011, 2012 and 2013 to make room for BYU.
In addition, the Utes have scheduled a Sept. 1 game against Montana State, which fills a void created when Iowa State canceled its return game.
That game will cost the Utes $375,000. They must pay Boise State a total of $350,000 for canceling the series. However, the Utes will recoup some since Iowa State will pay $250,00 for canceling in 2011.
The Utes still plan to play at Pittsburgh on Oct. 8, 2011.
"We are excited to continue our rivalry with BYU in football and men's basketball and our other sports are busy working out the logistics to make it happen as well," Utah athletic director Chris Hill said. "It is an important rivalry to our fans and to everyone involved with Utah athletics."
The status of Utah's rivalry with Utah State is unknown, however the two schools will complete their previously signed contract for a four-game series from 2012-2015.
Hill is attending the Pac-10 athletic directors meetings in San Francisco where a divisional split, revenue sharing and the site of a possible conference championship game are being discussed. However, no final decisions will be made until the presidents meet Oct. 21.
The Utes are anticipating a nine-game Pac-10 schedule in 2011 with five games in Salt Lake City, which would give them six home games in 2011 with the addition of Montana State.
Replacing an opponent from a BCS conference with Montana State is a sign of things to come as both Utah coach Kyle Whittingham and Hill have expressed desires to include a team from the Football Championship Subdivision in future schedules with the switch to the Pac-10.
Whittingham declined to comment on the schedule changes Thursday, saying "All of our focus is on Iowa State."
The only non-conference game that is certain on future schedules are a game at Utah State in 2012 and a home game against the Aggies in 2013. The Utes had series scheduled with Washington State and Colorado in 2012 and 2013, but those could become league games.
In addition to the series with BYU, Utah men's basketball has agreed to a four-game home-and-home series with Boise State starting in 2010 in Salt Lake City and will discontinue a home-and-home series with Weber State.
Future games with Utah State are undetermined for the Utes, who will have an 18-game conference schedule in the Pac-10.
"I have always been a big proponent of the rivalry series with BYU, it's very important to us," said men's basketball coach Jim Boylen. "My guys like playing in big games and I enjoy coaching in them, so we are thankful and excited to continue this series."
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2011 Utah non-conference schedule
Sept. 1 • vs. Montana State
Sept. 17 • at BYU
Oct. 8 • at Pittsburgh