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USF announces FAMU and Bethune-Cookman as new opponents

Florida Football Insiders

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

On Thursday afternoon the USF Bulls announced more out of conference scheduling, and in both cases, it involves to FCS State programs of note. The Bulls will be resuming their series with Florida A&M and have agreed to play Bethune-Cookman for the first times in program history.

USF will play the Rattlers in September of 2021 in the first of a three-game series in which the Bulls will host FAMU again in 2023 and 2027. USF leads the all-time series three victories to none, including a 51-3 pasting in 2015 at Raymond James Stadium. Meanwhile, it will be the first time that USF has ever played Bethune-Cookman in football, and that will come in September of next year. Then, the Bulls and Wildcats will play again, in September of 2026.

The announcement of adding Bethune-Cookman to the 2020 schedule completes the out of conference opponents. USF will open that season against the Texas Longhorns in Austin, which if all things remain equal, means the current coach Charlie Strong will face his previous employer in a “Lone Star State” battle. The Bulls will also host Nevada at home and play at FAU in Boca Raton before beginning American Conference play next season.

As for the 2021 schedule, Florida A&M fits in as one of two Bulls out of conference home games. The other being against the mighty Florida Gators the previous week, Saturday September 11th at Raymond James Stadium. USF will open the 2021 season at ACC opponent, NC State and will also play in late September at BYU in Provo, Utah, before the American Conference games.

Bulls athletic director Michael Kelly released this statement on the additions of FAMU and Bethune-Cookman:

“We are excited to add five home games vs. a pair of in-state programs and to be able to continue to build and highlight the great tradition of college football in the state of Florida, ” Kelly said. “Florida A&M and Bethune-Cookman both have deep traditions and passionate fan bases and we look forward to a great atmosphere in Raymond James Stadium for these games.”

And as USF is touting they now have 17 non-conference games against Power Six opponents over the next decade, and that includes: Alabama, Florida and Miami playing them at home as part of “two for one” deals, where the Bulls will play those schools twice at their location.

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