Colorado State will continue the trend of beefing up its non-conference football schedule, and its athletic department’s pockets.
CSU and SEC member Arkansas announced Thursday that the two schools will meet in one future football game, a game that will reportedly pay the Rams $1.3 million, according to the Loveland Reporter-Herald. The schools also agreed to a home-and-home series in men’s basketball, with the first game being played in Arkansas in 2017-18 and returning to Fort Collins in 2018-19. The football game between the Rams and Razorbacks will take place Sept. 14, 2019 in Arkansas.
The 2019 football game between the Rams and Razorbacks will mark CSU’s third season in a row—and fourth time in seven years—playing a road game against an opponent from the SEC, following games at Alabama on Sept. 16, 2017, and at Florida on Sept. 15, 2018, part of former head coach Jim McElwain’s buyout agreement.
“It is always our goal to create the most competitive schedule for our program,” CSU head coach Mike Bobo said in a statement released by the University. “Going on the road to face teams from the SEC will test our team and prepare us well in the non-conference season for the challenges our Mountain West schedule will present.”
CSU opens the 2019 season with the annual Rocky Mountain Showdown in Denver on Aug. 31, which marks the final time the Rams and Buffaloes will play the current series in Denver, with the 2020 game slated to be played in Fort Collins. The Rams have two more opponents to name to complete the 2019 non-conference schedule.
Arkansas has hosted Colorado State three times, all in Little Rock, and prevailed 43-9 on Oct. 26, 1974; 36-3 on Sept. 15, 1979 and 31-20 on Sept. 29, 1990.
In basketball, the Rams and Razorbacks have never met, but CSU is 10-6 all-time against current SEC members. The last time Colorado State faced an opponent from the SEC was on March 21, 2013 in head coach Larry Eustachy’s first season, when CSU defeated Missouri, 84-72, in the opening round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament in Lexington, Ky.
“This is a great opportunity for our team to get a home-and-home with a program with the history and quality of Arkansas,” Eustachy said in a press release. “Any time you get a chance to have a two-game series like this, it is great for the players, the program, the athletic department and the community. Bringing them to Moby Arena will be great for everyone, and I am excited we get the chance to add them to our schedule for those two seasons.”
Collegian Senior Sports Keegan Pope can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter @ByKeeganPope.