HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) _ University of Southern Mississippi football coach Jay Hopson often refers to himself as old school.
So, when the fourth-year coach was asked about the Golden Eagles' 2019 schedule, it came as no surprise that he responded with one of the program’s tried and true slogans.
“Anybody. Anywhere. Anytime,” Hopson said. “The bottom line is, you’re talking to a football coach, and I kind of grew up Southern Miss, so, heck, we’ll play in March. We don’t care."
The Golden Eagles certainly will be breaking out its traveling cleats this fall.
For the first time since 2013, USM will be playing seven games on the road this season, including three of its four non-conference contests.
The 2019 schedule released Thursday morning has the Golden Eagles playing two Southeastern Conference opponents for the fourth time in six seasons and playing at least two teams from Power Five conferences for the sixth time in the last seven seasons.
"With a pair of Southeastern Conference opponents scheduled, including in-state rival Mississippi State, the 2019 football slate will challenge us in the non-conference segment to prepare us to compete for a (Conference) USA championship," USM interim athletic director Jeff Mitchell said in a statement.
“While we are playing only five home games next fall, the two SEC road games provide a substantial financial benefit for both our football program and our athletics department. We will resume scheduling six home games in subsequent years, and we are looking forward to an exciting 2019 football season.”
MSU will pay USM $1.2 million for the Sept. 7 visit to Starkville and Alabama will pay the Golden Eagles $1.85 million for the Sept. 21 trip to Tuscaloosa, Ala.
USM also will travel to Troy University on Sept. 14, making it three in a row on the road for the Golden Eagles after opening the season on Aug. 31 by welcoming Alcorn State University to M.M. Roberts Stadium.
The Golden Eagles open C-USA play by hosting the University of Texas-El Paso on Sept. 28.
An Oct. 3 bye week is followed by a visit from the University of North Texas (Oct. 12) in Denton, Texas, before USM takes to the road for consecutive conference games at Louisiana Tech University (Oct. 19) in Ruston, La., and Rice University (Oct. 26) in Houston.
Following a second bye week (Nov. 2), the Golden Eagles host the University of Alabama-Birmingham (Nov. 9) and take a trip to the University of Texas-San Antonio (Nov. 16) before welcoming Western Kentucky University to Hattiesburg (Nov. 23).for the first time for football.
USM wraps up the season on Nov. 30 in Boca Raton, Fla., where the Golden Eagles face Florida Atlantic University for only the second time and first since 2013.
Date Opponent Site
- Aug. 31 Alcorn State Hattiesburg
- Sept. 7 @ Mississippi State Starkville
- Sept. 14 @ Troy Troy, Ala.
- Sept. 21 @ Alabama Tuscaloosa, Ala.
- Sept. 28 UTEP* Hattiesburg
- Oct. 12 North Texas* Hattiesburg
- Oct. 19 @ Louisiana Tech Ruston, La.
- Oct. 26 @Rice Houston
- Nov. 9 Alabama-Birmingham Hattiesburg
- Nov. 16 @ Texas-San Antonio San Antonio, Texas
- Nov. 23 Western Kentucky Hattiesburg
- Nov. 30 @ Florida Atlantic Boca Raton, Fla.