HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Off the heels of a Conference USA West Division title, a nine-win season and its first bowl game in four years, Southern Miss announced Thursday its 2016 football schedule.
It was announced in a news release Thursday that The Golden Eagles open the 2016 campaign for the second year in a row against a Southeastern Conference foe as they travel to Lexington to face Kentucky on Sept. 3 to open the Jay Hopson era.
Southern Miss also travels to SEC foe LSU to complete its road portion of the non-conference schedule on Oct. 15
Southern Miss again plays six home games at Carlisle-Faulkner Field at M.M. Roberts Stadium next fall, including non-conference foes Savannah State on Sept. 10 and Troy on Sept. 17, according to the release.
As for the Conference USA schedule, it opens Sept. 24, on the road at UTEP, followed by its league home opener the following week with Rice.
After a trip to UTSA on Oct. 8 and then to LSU the following week, the Golden Eagles enjoy their lone bye week, before returning home for a pair of contests against Marshall on Oct. 29 and Charlotte on Nov. 5.
According to the release, The Golden Eagles then take to the road for back-to-back contests against Old Dominion on Nov. 12 and North Texas on Nov. 19 before finishing the regular season at home versus Louisiana Tech.
The 2016 alignment will feature seven teams in the East Division and six teams in the West Division. Charlotte, FIU, Florida Atlantic, Marshall, Middle Tennessee, Old Dominion and WKU comprise the East Division, while Louisiana Tech, North Texas, Rice, Southern Miss, UTEP and UTSA make up the West Division.
Each school in the West Division will play every team in its division once for five games, while playing three cross-over opponents from the opposite division.
Three schools in the East Division will play every team in its division once for six games, while playing two cross-over opponents from the opposite division.
Four schools in the East Division will play five opponents in its division once for five games, while playing three cross-over opponents from the opposite division, according to the release.
The cross-division opponents, as well as the East Division non-plays are the same as last season, with the sites of the games being reversed. The 2016 schedule has 13 playing weeks, which provides for one open date for each team.
A schedule of televised games will be released at a later date. Conference USA's 12th annual Championship Game, pitting the champions of the East and West Divisions, is scheduled for Saturday, December 3.
*Please note that all games are subject to date changes.
2016 Southern Miss Football Schedule:
Sept. 3 at Kentucky
Sept. 10 SAVANNAH STATE
Sept. 17 TROY
Sept. 24 at UTEP
Oct. 1 RICE
Oct. 8 at UTSA
Oct. 15 at LSU
Oct. 22 BYE
Oct. 29 MARSHALL
Nov. 5 CHARLOTTE
Nov. 12 at Old Dominion
Nov. 19 at North Texas
Nov. 26 LOUISIANA TECH