ETSU to play at North Carolina in 2026

By Brian Wilmer -

The ETSU Buccaneers will play at the North Carolina Tar Heels in 2026, the school announced Friday.

The contest was originally scheduled for 2022.

“We are very excited to make this game announcement and want to thank North Carolina for giving us this opportunity,” said head coach Randy Sanders at the time of the original announcement. “This adds to an already strong list of teams we are preparing to play in the future, and it is great for our program to play teams from the ACC and SEC.”

East Tennessee State and North Carolina have never faced off on the gridiron. Per the original announcement, ETSU will receive a $450,000 guarantee for the game.

North Carolina is the first scheduled non-conference opponent for ETSU for the 2026 season.

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So many local programs. So many local FCS programs. UNC continues to move state funds out of state for body bag games when they could grab NCCU, NC A&T, UNCC, Elon, WCU, ECU, Campbell, etc. Embarrassing.