Mercyhurst Lakers finalize 2024 football schedule

By Kevin Kelley -

The Mercyhurst Lakers have finalized their 2024 football schedule, which includes a total of 11 games.

Mercyhurst, currently a member of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) in Division II, is moving up to the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and will begin play in the Northeast Conference (NEC) this fall.

The Lakers will be ineligible for the NEC championship in their first season. Following a four-year reclassification period, Mercyhurst will attain its full membership status in 2028-29 and will be eligible for the FCS Playoffs at that time.

Mercyhurst opens the 2024 season with four consecutive non-conference contests on the road, beginning on Thursday, Aug. 29 against the Division II Wheeling Cardinals.

The Lakers will then travel to take on the Howard Bison on Sept. 7 and the Robert Morris Colonials on Sept. 14, which will also be their Northeast Conference opener. Mercyhurst’s fourth road contest is at the Montana State Bobcats on Sept. 21, which was announced last month.

Mercyhurst will open its home slate at Saxon Stadium in Erie, Pa., on Sept. 28 against the Division II Frostburg State Bobcats. The following week on Oct. 5, the Lakers will host the Division III Buffalo State Bengals, which will also serve as their Homecoming contest.

A return to NEC action is slated for Oct. 12, as Mercyhurst pays a visit to the Central Connecticut Blue Devils. That’s followed by the first open date of the season (Oct. 19).

The Lakers then make back-to-back road trips to play FCS Independent Sacred Heart on Oct. 26 and fellow NEC-member Duquesne on Nov. 2.

On Nov. 9, Mercyhurst will host the Lincoln (Calif.) Oaklanders before its second open date of the season on Nov. 16. Mercyhurst concludes its inaugural Division I schedule at home on Nov. 23 against Saint Francis U.

Below is Mercyhurst’s complete schedule for the 2024 season:

2024 Mercyhurst Football Schedule

  • 08/29 – at Wheeling
  • 09/07 – at Howard
  • 09/14 – at Robert Morris*
  • 09/21 – at Montana State
  • 09/28 – Frostburg State
  • 10/05 – Buffalo State
  • 10/12 – at Central Connecticut*
  • 10/19 – OFF
  • 10/26 – at Sacred Heart
  • 11/02 – at Duquesne*
  • 11/09 – Lincoln (CA)
  • 11/16 – OFF
  • 11/23 – Saint Francis U.*

* NEC contest.

Mercyhurst finished the 2023 season 2-9 overall, with a 1-6 mark in PSAC action. The Lakers are entering their third season under head coach Ryan Riemedio, who has a 4-17 overall record at the school.

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Comments (4)

If they lose to Lincoln, can they be sent back to D-II? With the talent level in the NEC, it doesn’t take much to compete, but this teams has apparently been added to make the rest of the league feel good about themselves.

As a western PA native, it is very confusing as to why Mercyhurst made the jump to d1. They can usually hold their own in sports like basketball or baseball or lacrosse, they are d1 in hockey. But, their football team has been very very bad. I’m not sure why they left the PSAC and why the NEC took them. Very small private school.

There are much better options in the PSAC… IUP or Slippery Rock would’ve made much more sense, but they are publicly funded, unlike Mercyhurst.

I have a friend who wrestled d2 for Mercyhurst. His reaction was shock and disappointment as they are going to be the bottom of the barrel in d1…. But then again, with the enrollment cliff incoming, this might be how they stay ahead others.

Dan-ke for the Shoes on the ground in Western Pennsylvania.

Interesting to hear that a privately funded school is called upon to invest in Football while the state supported schools show there’s not automatic PA state Legislature Taxdollars to appropriate for the NorthEast Conference Universities.