Middle Tennessee, BYU schedule 2013-14 football series

By Kevin Kelley -

BYU-MTSUThe Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders and the BYU Cougars have signed a home-and-home football series for 2013 and 2014, The Tennessean has reported.

Middle Tennessee will travel to face BYU at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo in 2013. The game will be the first ever meeting between the two schools. The Blue Raiders will then host the Cougars at Johnny “Red” Floyd Stadium in Murfreesboro in 2014.

Exact dates for both games were not announced.

“When (BYU) went independent (after being in the Mountain West Conference), they were looking for games, and I’ve always thought they had a national following,” MTSU athletics director Chris Massaro said. “So I am very excited about that home-and-home series.”

MTSU will open the 2013 season at home vs. Western Carolina and will also host Memphis. In 2014, the Blue Raiders travel to Minnesota and Memphis and host BYU. Two more non-conference games are needed for each season.

As for BYU, they now have 11 games scheduled for 2013 and can play a total of 13 if they opt to use The Hawaii Exemption. The Cougars are slated to host Texas, Boise State, Georgia Tech, Middle Tennessee, and Utah and travel to face Utah State, Houston, Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Hawaii, and Washington State.

In 2014, the Cougars now have eight games scheduled and need four more. Set to visit Provo are Houston, Hawaii, Southern Miss, and Utah State. Road games include Texas, Boise State, Middle Tennessee, and UCF.

Update (9/24/12): BYU has officially announced the MTSU series.

“We’re pleased to schedule this series with Middle Tennessee State,” said BYU director of athletics Tom Holmoe. “It fits well with our objective to play in different regions of the country and give our fans an opportunity to see us play in person. It also allows both schools to have a unique travel experience.”

Football Schedules:

Comments (10)

That’s quite a scheduling coup for Middle Tennessee. Getting BYU for a home date is probably a bigger prize than Minnesota or some of the mid-level ACC or BE teams they’ve hosted before.

As a BYU fan, and MTSU alumni (under grad and graduate school), I am stoked about this series! I’m thinking of flying out next year to go watch, and the MTSU home game’s a few miles down the road. so Don’t know who to root foR!?!?!

Independence is looking great for BYU! This series will help soften the blow from losing the Notre Dame games.

Yeah, this gimmick sin’t likely to get old or anything.

BYU’s schedule for 2013 looks just fine. 2014 not so much but still some decent opponents.

Nobody–nobody–plays 12 killer opponents each year. As far as mid-major fill-ins go MTSU is as good of a choice as any other.

Can you show any evidence that shows Notre Dame is cancelling the BYU series of 6 games before 2020, especially since Notre Dame will have to play 1 game in Provo during that time since BYU will have already played the first 2 road games in the first 2-for-1 contract during 2012 and 2013? Last time I looked at their schedule, even with 5 ACC games BYU would be the 12th team on their schedule most of those seasons if they kept all the traditional rivalries. USC, Stanford, Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Navy, and 5 ACC teams only totals 11 games. Boston College, Pitt, Miami, they are all traditional rivalries that would be part of the 5 ACC games a year.

There have also been strong hints that they might only play 2 of the Big 10 teams in a season instead of 3, meaning they’d have 2 games to fill. Do you really think they wouldn’t drop Temple in 2014 before dropping BYU? Do you really think they wouldn’t drop Rice before BYU? Do you really think they wouldn’t drop UMass before dropping BYU? Keep in mind Notre Dame is in it to make money, and they know just as well as I do that keeping BYU on the schedule would be more beneficial than any of the teams I mentioned. BYU will always draw more viewers to NBC than any of the teams I mentioned, meaning they get more TV money from having more viewers.

BYU can fill in the two other spots with home games against Idaho and NMSU. Both those teams need help filling out a Independent schedule in 2013.

It would be tricky getting Idaho to come to Provo for a 3rd consecutive year. I think BYU will schedule 1 FCS home game in 2013, and my guess would be Southern Utah, Montana, or Montana State. They’ve said they want to play 1 FCS team a year at home to try and get 7 home games, and they’ve said they want to focus on the regional FCS teams. They’ve never played Southern Utah before, and state rivals always draw more fans than nobodies like Idaho usually do. Heck, more people showed up for Weber State at BYU this year than Washington State at BYU opening night. New Mexico State would be a good option for the 13th game, as long as NMSU agrees to at least a home-and-home series but preferably a 2-for-1 series.

Word is that BYU has reserved the local LDS Church Stake Center for the 11/1 weekend, which should indicate the 11/1 date is firm. Thanks for KB for the info.