Heading into the 2011 college football season, of all the FBS schools BYU had yet to face in football, New Mexico State was the closest to Provo. With BYU having played the Aggies last season, that left Nebraska as "new neighbor," when it came to gridiron unfamiliarity and geographical proximity.
Well, you can cross the Cornhuskers off that list and head back to the map, because BYU today announced a one-game deal with Nebraska--the game to be played September 5th, 2015.
Here is the text of BYU's official press release:
PROVO, Utah — BYU director of athletics Tom Holmoe today announced the Cougars have agreed to play the University of Nebraska in football at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb., on Sept. 5, 2015.
"This is a great opportunity to play an outstanding football team in one of the storied football stadiums in the country," said Holmoe. "Nebraska was looking for a game in 2015 and the timing was good for BYU. I look forward to developing a long term relationship with Nebraska."
The first-ever meeting between the two highly successful programs, the Huskers of the Big Ten and the independent Cougars have each achieved 38 wins over the past four seasons, which is tied for 14th nationally over that span. The two programs also rank No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, for the most Academic All-America citations over the past seven seasons with Nebraska garnering nine and BYU seven.
The Huskers are one of the most storied programs in college football history, having earned the fourth-most all-time victories of any FBS team. Nebraska has won five national championships and is home to numerous individual awards, including three Heisman Trophy winners and eight Outland Trophy recipients.
Last season Nebraska finished with a 9-4 record in its first season as a member of the Big Ten and finished No. 24 in both national polls. The Huskers have finished the season ranked each of the last three seasons.
BYU is coming off its first season as a football independent in 2011 with a 10-3 record and a 24-21 victory over Tulsa in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. The Cougars finished the year ranked No. 25 in the USA Today Coaches Poll, earning a spot in the final top-25 poll for the fifth time in the last six seasons. BYU has 20 top-25 finishes since 1974.
The Cougars began playing football in 1922. In 87 seasons BYU has earned 23 conference titles and appeared in 30 bowl games, winning five of its last six bowl appearances. BYU won the National Championship in 1984 and is the only school with at least one winner of the following major awards: Heisman Trophy, Outland Trophy, Doak Walker Award, Davey O'Brien Award and Sammy Baugh Trophy.
Graphic courtesy BYU Athletic Communications