Colorado State releases 2017 non-conference football schedule

Justin Michael

The first opponent the Rams will face in their new on-campus stadium will be the Abilene Christian Wildcats.

Colorado State announced its 2017 non-conference football schedule Wednesday. It is highlighted by a trio of Power-5 opponents.

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CSU will open the 2017 season Sept. 2 against in-state rival University of Colorado Buffaloes. The semi-annual matchup will once again take place at Sports Authority Field. The Rams will then host Abilene Christian Sept. 9 in what will be the first game at the new on-campus stadium.

The following week, the Rams will make the trip to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, to take on the Alabama Crimson Tide Sept. 16. CSU last played Alabama under coach Jim McElwain in 2013, when the Rams lost 31-6 in a game that was more competitive than the score indicates.

CSU will complete its non-conference schedule with a home matchup against the Oregon State Beavers Sept. 23. The game is the first part of a home-and-home series between the two schools. CSU will play the Beavers in Corvallis, Oregon during the 2020 season. The last season that Colorado State played three opponents from Power-5 schools was in 2004 (Colorado, USC, Minnesota).

“We are extremely excited about the opening of our new stadium in 2017 and bringing Rams football back to campus,” Colorado State head coach Mike Bobo said in a release. “We also want to play the most competitive schedule we can, and deliver to our fans the opportunity to see quality competition. Our 2017 non-conference schedule, with two opponents from the Pac-12 and one from the SEC will provide our program with the type of competition we need to prepare our team for Mountain West play.”

The Rams’ Mountain West home opponents for the stadium’s inaugural season in 2017 are scheduled to be Air Force, Boise State, Nevada and San Jose State. The away games will include Hawai’i, New Mexico, Utah State and Wyoming.

Collegian Sports Reporter Justin Michael can be reached by email at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @JustinSportsCSU.