Kelly/Shorts Stadium to host NC State, UNLV, Oklahoma State and Kansas
Heeke is doing some work! North Carolina State, UNLV, Oklahoma State and Kansas are all traveling to Kelly/Shorts Stadium within the next several years.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t shocked by this news, because securing home games with BCS opponents is not how Athletic Departments maximize their revenue — and revenue tends to be at the core of how Athletic Directors make decisions. My guess is that Heeke is willing to absorb a short-term financial hit in the interest of long-term gains through improved exposure, branding, and fan involvement. MAC programs need to fight to stay relevant in the era of playoffs and super conferences. In any case, I don’t care how or why it came about; I’m just glad it did.
Here’s the media release. . .
MOUNT PLEASANT – Central Michigan football has announced future non-conference schedules that will feature home and road games against teams from the ACC, Big 12, and Mountain West.
The Chippewas will host North Carolina State (2014), Oklahoma State (2015), UNLV (2016), and Kansas (2018) in the coming years.
“We have secured series with top-quality non-conference opponents to not only challenge our team but provide Chippewas fans with exciting games to attend and view,” said CMU Athletic Director Dave Heeke. “We look forward to many exciting fall Saturdays in the mid-Michigan region in the years to come.”
CMU will also take on North Carolina State (2013), UNLV (2013), Kansas (2014, 2017), and Oklahoma State (2016, 2018) on the road.
In addition, CMU will travel locally to play Michigan in the Big House to open the 2013 season and to face Michigan State in East Lansing in 2015 and 2018.
The Chippewas visited North Carolina State in 2011, the first ever meeting between the schools. CMU has played UNLV three times but has not faced the Runnin’ Rebels since the 1994 Las Vegas Bowl.
The Chippewas will travel to Kansas in 2014 and 2017 before the Jayhawks come to Mount Pleasant in 2018. CMU has met Kansas just once all-time, a 2007 match-up played in Lawrence.
In 2015, CMU will begin a series with Big 12 power Oklahoma State. The Cowboys have won 41 games over the last four years, including the 2012 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, and captured the school’s first Big 12 championship in 2011. The Chippewas have never met OSU in the program’s 112-year history.
Next weekend, CMU hosts No. 13 Michigan State in the highly anticipated Clash at Kelly/Shorts presented by PNC Bank. The battle between in-state foes is set for Saturday, Sept. 8 at 3:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPNU. Later in the 2012 season, on Friday, Oct. 12, CMU will welcome Navy to Mount Pleasant.
Those contests are part of a seven-game 2012 home schedule that also features conference match-ups with Ball State (Oct. 20), Akron (Oct. 27), Western Michigan (Nov. 3), and Miami (Nov. 17).
Central Michigan opened the 2012 season on Thursday night with a 38-27 home win over Southeast Missouri State