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LOGAN — Utah State's 2014 football schedule was released Wednesday and the Aggies will play 13 regular season games for the first time in school history, including hosting an Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) team for the first time ever.
The 2014 schedule marks the fifth-straight season and sixth time in the last seven years Utah State has played six home games. Entering USU's 117th season of football in 123 years, the Aggies have had six home games on the slate a total of only 11 times: 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2008, 1998, 1996, 1995, 1978 and 1952.
Highlighting Utah State's home schedule will be its first-ever match-up with ACC member Wake Forest on Saturday, Sept. 13. The game will also mark the first-ever visit by an ACC school to Romney Stadium. In all, the Aggies' game with WF will be just the fourth-ever meeting between USU and a team from the ACC. Furthermore, Wake Forest will be the first Bowl Championship Series (BCS) school other than Utah to visit Romney Stadium since the 2001 season when the Aggies hosted Oregon from the Pac-12 Conference.
"We had major holes to fill in 2014 caused by the Mountain West flipping Boise State from a non-conference home game to a conference road game and Utah buying out of our home game," said USU Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes. "After 18 months of searching we are excited to be able to fill one of the open slots with an ACC opponent. I know our fans will enjoy seeing that level of competition at home next year. It will be a fun challenge that our student-athletes will look forward to as well."
We had major holes to fill in 2014 caused by the Mountain West flipping Boise State from a non-conference home game to a conference road game and Utah buying out of our home game. After 18 months of searching we are excited to be able to fill one of the open slots with an ACC opponent. I know our fans will enjoy seeing that level of competition at home next year. It will be a fun challenge that our student-athletes will look forward to as well.
"Our 2014 schedule will be extremely challenging for our players and coaches as we open our season at Tennessee and play four road games against bowl teams from a year ago" said first-year head coach Matt Wells. "We are also excited to host an ACC school at Romney Stadium for the first-time ever in Wake Forest and play our second season in the Mountain West with home games against Air Force, New Mexico, San José State and UNLV."
Utah State will begin the 2014 season with a road game at Southeastern Conference (SEC) member Tennessee on Saturday, Aug. 30 in the first-ever meeting between the two teams. Overall, USU will be playing a team from the SEC for the 18th time in school history with its last meeting being a 42-38 loss at defending national champion Auburn to begin the 2011 campaign.
Utah State will then play back-to-back non-conference home games against Idaho State on Saturday, Sept. 6 and against Wake Forest on Saturday, Sept. 13. It will be the second time in five years that the Bengals have visited Romney Stadium, as USU leads the overall series, 14-2-0. USU won the last meeting between the two teams, 38-17, in 2010.
Utah State will then play back-to-back road games to end September and begin October as it will travel to Sun Belt Conference country and play at Arkansas State on Saturday, Sept. 27, followed by a road game at in-state foe BYU on Friday, Oct. 3. USU is 3-2 all-time against the Red Wolves as the two teams played Big West Conference games against one another in 1995, 1999 and 2000, and later spent two years together as league foes in the Sun Belt in 2003 and 2004. USU and BYU will be meeting for the 84th time next fall in what is the second-oldest series in USU history.
Utah State, who won the Mountain Division in its inaugural season in the Mountain West, will host Air Force, New Mexico, San José State and UNLV, in USU's second season in the conference, and play at Boise State, Colorado State, Hawai'i and Wyoming. Dates and kickoff times for USU's eight league games will be announced at a later date.
In all, Utah State will play five teams who played in bowl games in 2013 with a home game against UNLV, and road games against Arkansas State, BYU, Boise State and Colorado State.
For Aggie football ticket information, fans can contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office over the phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or 435-797-0305 during regular hours of operation. Fans can also buy their tickets in person at the USU Ticket Office inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum or online by clicking on the "Buy Tickets" tab at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball or on Facebook at Utah State Football, as well as on Instagram at instagram.com/USUFootball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.