LYNCHBURG, Va. – For the fourth time in program history, Liberty will play seven home football games, spotlighting the Flames’ 2013 football schedule.
“I am pleased to announce the football schedule for the 2013 season,” said Director of Athletics Jeff Barber. “As we all know, the landscape of FBS/FCS football is constantly changing. This fact, along with the opportunity to play a 12-game schedule, created scheduling difficulties for many schools. We are still receiving emails and phone calls from other institutions looking for games for this upcoming season.”
“We are excited to play a 12-game schedule this year, including seven home games, which will provide a special opportunity for our team and fans.”
The Flames’ home slate includes non-conference matchups with Brevard, Kentucky Wesleyan, Monmouth and Morgan State, plus Big South battles with Coastal Carolina, Presbyterian College and VMI.
During Liberty’s previous three seasons with seven home games, the Flames posted a combined 24-9 overall record (1980: 7-3; 1990: 7-4; 2008: 10-2).
Additionally, Liberty’s 2013 non-conference road schedule will feature matchups with Kent State, Richmond and Old Dominion. The three programs finished the 2012 season with a combined 30-8 overall record, two conference titles and a 21-3 record in their respective conference schedules.
The Flames’ 2013 schedule will also feature 12 games for the third time in program history. Liberty’s football schedule also featured a dozen games in 2003 (6-6) and 2008 (10-2).
Liberty will open the season with a Thursday night matchup against Kent State in Kent, Ohio on Aug. 29. The Flames’ second-ever Thursday evening game will pit Liberty against a Kent State program that finished 2012 with an 11-3 record, a MAC East championship (8-0) and a trip to the GoDaddy.com Bowl against Arkansas State.
The Flames will return home the following two weeks to face Monmouth (Sept. 7) and Morgan State (Sept. 14), beginning the 24th season of Flames football at Williams Stadium.
The matchup with Monmouth (5-5 overall, 4-3 NEC) will be the first for the Flames, but one that will become more familiar with the Hawks joining the Big South as an associate member in 2014. Liberty’s game against Morgan State (3-8 overall, 2-6 MEAC) will be the fourth time the Flames have faced the Bears and the first since 1996.
Liberty will take to the road the following weekend to take on Richmond (Sept. 21) and former Flames’ head coach Danny Rocco. Last year, Rocco guided the Spiders to a share of the CAA conference title (8-3 overall, 6-2 CAA) and No. 18 ranking in the Sports Network and FCS Coaches final polls.
Following the Flames’ third matchup all-time against Kentucky Wesleyan (Sept. 28), Liberty will face Old Dominion in Norfolk, Va., to open up play in October (Oct. 5). Last year, the Monarchs (11-2, 7-1 CAA) advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA FCS Playoffs and finished the year ranked No. 6 in both national polls.
The 2013 season will mark the beginning of Old Dominion’s transition to FBS football and to Conference USA for the 2014 season.
Following a bye week, Liberty will open up Big South play against one of the two teams it shared the Big South Conference title with in 2012.
On Oct. 19, the Flames will welcome Coastal Carolina to Williams Stadium. Last year, the Chanticleers (8-5, 5-1 BSC) advanced in the NCAA FCS Playoffs and finished the year ranked No. 24 in both of the final FCS polls.
Following a road game at Gardner-Webb (3-8 overall, 2-4 BSC) on Oct. 26, Liberty will begin a three-game, regular-season-ending homestand against in-state foe VMI (2-9 overall, 1-5 BSC) on Nov. 2.
The Flames will play their final home Big South game of the season on Nov. 9 against Presbyterian College (2-9 overall, 0-6 BSC) before closing out the home portion of their schedule against Brevard on Nov. 16.
For the first time in program history, the Flames will close out their season on the road at Charleston Southern (5-6 overall, 3-3 BSC) on Nov. 23. The two programs have met each season since 1993 with Liberty leading the series 18-2.
The Flames hope the late-season trip to Charleston, S.C., will be a memorable one where Liberty will look to secure its sixth Big South title in the last seven seasons and its first-ever automatic bid to the NCAA FCS Playoffs.
The NCAA FCS Playoff field will expand to 24 teams in 2013 and will open with eight first-round games on Nov. 30. The tournament will culminate with the crowning of the FCS national champion at the FC Dallas Stadium in Frisco, Texas in January.
Liberty’s 2013 Football Schedule
Aug. 29 (Thurs) – at Kent State (Kent, Ohio)
Sept. 7 (Sat.) – Monmouth (Lynchburg, Va.)
Sept. 14 (Sat.) – Morgan State (Lynchburg, Va.)
Sept. 21 (Sat.) – at Richmond (Richmond, Va.)
Sept. 28 (Sat.) – Kentucky Wesleyan (Lynchburg, Va.)
Oct. 5 (Sat.) – at Old Dominion (Norfolk, Va.)
Oct. 12 (Sat.) – Open Week
Oct. 19 (Sat.) – Coastal Carolina * (Lynchburg, Va.)
Oct. 26 (Sat.) – at Gardner-Webb * (Boiling Springs, N.C.)
Nov. 2 (Sat.) – VMI * (Lynchburg, Va.)
Nov. 9 (Sat.) – Presbyterian College * (Lynchburg, Va.)
Nov. 16 (Sat.) – Brevard (Lynchburg, Va.)
Nov. 23 (Sat.) – at Charleston Southern * (Charleston, S.C.)
Nov. 30 (Sat.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (First Round/On-Campus Site)
Dec. 7 (Sat.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (Second Round/On-Campus Site)
Dec. 13 (Fri.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (Quarterfinals/On-Campus Site)
Dec. 14 (Sat.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (Quarterfinals/On-Campus Site)
Dec. 20 (Fri.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (Semifinals/On-Campus Site)
Dec. 21 (Sat.) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (Semifinals/On-Campus Site)
Jan. (Date TBA) – NCAA FCS Playoffs (National Championship Game/FC Dallas Stadium – Frisco, Texas)