Vanderbilt adds Delaware to 2026 football schedule

By Kevin Kelley -

The Vanderbilt Commodores have added the Delaware Blue Hens to their 2026 football schedule, according to an announcement by both schools on Thursday.

Vanderbilt will host Delaware at FirstBank Stadium in Nashville, Tenn., on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2026. The game will mark the first-ever meeting between the two schools on the gridiron.

The Delaware Blue Hens, who currently compete in the Coastal Athletic Association in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), are moving up to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and will join Conference USA in 2025. Delaware will become a full member of the FBS the following season in 2026.

With the addition of Delaware, Vanderbilt now has four non-conference opponents set for the 2026 season. The Commodores are also scheduled to host the Austin Peay Governors on Sept. 5 and the NC State Wolfpack on Sept. 19, both of which were mentioned in Vanderbilt’s release today.

Not mentioned is a previously scheduled game at the Colorado State Rams on Sept. 26. That contest, which is part of a four-game series, could be on the chopping block as the SEC looks to move to a nine-game conference schedule that season. The series was actually supposed to begin in 2020 but was not played due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vanderbilt is the third announced non-conference opponent for Delaware in 2026. The Blue Hens are also scheduled to host the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers on Sept. 3 and visit the Virginia Cavaliers on Sept. 26 that season.

Delaware was previously scheduled to host in-state rival Delaware State that season, but the status of that contest is uncertain.

Delaware now has seven future games scheduled against power opponents. The Blue Hens will visit Colorado and Wake Forest in 2025, Vanderbilt and Virginia in 2026, Penn State in 2027, Maryland in 2028, and Pitt in 2029.

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