The road to conference championships in 2016-17 will lead through the University of Northern Iowa. The Panthers will host four Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) championship competitions and one Mid-American Conference (MAC) tournament next year.

David Harris / Courtesy: UNI Athletics

“We are extremely excited to have an opportunity to host five conference championships during the 2016-17 academic year,” UNI Director of Athletics David Harris said. “We have a fantastic group of coaches and staff that work very hard and have given us a great reputation for hosting quality events.

"The indoor track and field championships will be hosted on our campus for the 10th consecutive year which speaks to the importance of having a multipurpose facility like the UNI-Dome. Additionally, we have the opportunity to host the swimming and diving championships for the first time."

The championship chase gets underway Oct. 29 when UNI hosts the 2016 MVC Cross Country Championship at Pheasant Ridge Golf Course in Cedar Falls. The Panthers previously hosted the cross country championship in 1984, 1996 and 2007.

The MVC volleyball tournament will be held at UNI for the 10th time in program history. The tourney will take place Nov. 24-26 in the McLeod Center. The Panthers last hosted the tournament in 2014.

For the first time in school history, UNI will serve as the host for the 2017 MVC Swimming & Diving Championships. The Panthers will host the meet in Iowa City on Feb. 15-18. UNI recorded the program’s best-ever finish at the MVC Championship meet last year with a third-place tally.

UNI will play host to the MVC Indoor Track & Field Championship meet for the 10th consecutive year in 2017. The Panthers will entertain the league’s best indoor track and field athletes Feb. 25-26 in the UNI-Dome. Overall, it will be the 19th indoor track and field conference championship to take place in the UNI-Dome.

The Panthers will take their turn as the Mid-American Conference Wrestling Championship hosts on March 4-5. It will mark UNI’s first hosting of a MAC championship event since joining the league as a wrestling-only member. UNI last hosted the NCAA West Regional (Western Wrestling Conference) meet in 2012.

"Overall, hosting these events allow us a chance to showcase the Cedar Valley to sports fans from across the Midwest," Harris said. "We have a very busy and exciting year ahead of us, and we are honored by the trust that has been placed in our institution by the Missouri Valley and Mid-American Conferences.”