SoCon announces football schedule

Southern Conference

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference spring football schedule will kick off on Saturday, Feb. 20. The league’s nine teams will complete the SoCon slate over nine weeks, wrapping up regular-season play on April 17, a week before the NCAA Division I Football Championship begins.

Defending SoCon champion Wofford begins its quest for a fourth straight title and fifth consecutive postseason berth when it welcomes Mercer to town on Feb. 20 in Bears coach Drew Cronic’s league debut. Furman, which finished a game back of the Terriers and earned an at-large berth to the FCS playoffs last season, hosts Western Carolina in its season opener. ETSU hosts Samford and VMI visits Chattanooga to round out the spring-opening schedule.

The final day of the regular season should also include plenty of intrigue. Furman hosts rival Wofford in a game between last season’s top two teams, while VMI welcomes military rival The Citadel in the battle for the Silver Shako, which the Keydets claimed last season for the first time since 2002. Chattanooga visits in-state foe ETSU in a rematch of a game the Mocs won on a field goal with 14 seconds left last season, while Samford hosts a Mercer squad that downed the Bulldogs in three overtimes last year.

Furman appeared in the Stats Perform, Athlon Sports and HERO Sports preseason FCS polls, while Wofford appeared in the Stats Perform and Athlon polls and The Citadel appeared in the Athlon and HERO polls. Chattanooga received votes in the Stats Perform and HERO polls.

ETSU, Furman, Samford, VMI and Wofford elected not to compete in nonconference competition in the fall when the decision was made to move SoCon fall sports’ league schedules to the spring due to the coronavirus, though teams were permitted to schedule nonconference fall games at their discretion. The Citadel, Mercer, Chattanooga and Western Carolina each scheduled at least one nonconference fall opponent.

The Citadel played four fall contests, which means it can only play seven spring games to avoid exceeding the NCAA-mandated 11-game regular-season maximum. The SoCon Council of Presidents approved a plan for the Bulldogs to compete in seven league games with one no-contest against a randomly selected league opponent. Furman was selected as that opponent in a blind draw. The no-contest is a game not played and will be considered a forfeit in the conference standings only, per NCAA policies.

Full broadcast schedules will be announced later, but all nine schools’ home games will air on either ESPN3 or ESPN+ if not selected for national or regional broadcast.

For the composite league schedule, visit SoConSports.com.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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