Tulsa will open the 2017 football season on September 2 with a road trip to in-state rival Oklahoma State in Stillwater.
“Starting out with Oklahoma State on the road is a tall task. They’re a team with a lot of returning players that finished the season ranked 11th in the country, and a program that has had incredible success with five 10-win seasons over the last seven years,” said TU coach Philip Montgomery.
Tulsa, which is coming off of the school’s eighth 10-win season in 2016 and a victory in the Miami Beach Bowl, begins against the Oklahoma State Cowboys on Labor Day Weekend. It will be the first meeting between the two schools since 2011 and the first time in Stillwater since a 2010 contest.
Like Tulsa, OSU also finished the 2016 season with a 10-3 record, placed second in the Big 12 Conference, won the Alamo Bowl and completed the year ranked 11th nationally. The OSU game is the first of five straight weeks for Tulsa of facing a 2016 bowl participant.
Nine Bowl participants from last year, including all six home opponents, fill the Tulsa Golden Hurricane football schedule in 2017, while eight of those teams posted 8+ wins a year ago.
The nine 2016 bowl teams on Tulsa’s 2017 slate combined to post a .681 winning percentage with 81 victories between them, while eight of the nine teams finished in the top-3 places of their respective leagues.
“It’s obvious with the number of teams that are coming off of successful seasons, nine that played in bowls last year, we have an extremely challenging schedule in 2017,” said Montgomery. “Our non-league schedule will definitely prepare us for another tough conference season.”
Tulsa opens the home season on Sept. 9 as the Hurricane and Ragin’ Cajuns of The University of Louisiana renew a series that hasn’t seen the two teams play since 1992. Tulsa and Louisiana, formerly Southwestern Louisiana, played nine times between 1977 and 1992, as ULL leads the series 5-4. The Ragin’ Cajuns are coming off of a six-win season and finished the 2016 campaign with an appearance in the New Orleans Bowl.
A week later, the Hurricane goes on the road to face Mid-American power Toledo on Sept. 16 at the Glass Bowl on the west bank of the Maumee River in northwest Ohio. The two teams played twice before, both in the 1960s with the series tied at one win apiece.
Tulsa closes out the nonconference portion of the schedule on Sept. 23 with a home game against the New Mexico Lobos. Tulsa has a 5-2 series advantage over UNM as the two teams last played in Albuquerque in 2015. The Lobos posted its most wins since 2007 with an identical 9-4 record in 2016, shared the Mountain Division title in the Mountain West Conference and capped off the season with a victory in the New Mexico Bowl.
“Louisiana-Lafayette and Toledo have had strong teams in recent years and throughout their histories, and Coach Bob Davie has the New Mexico program back near the top of the Mountain West Conference,” said Montgomery.
The U.S. Naval Academy opens Tulsa’s American Athletic Conference schedule on Sept. 30 as the Midshipmen visit H.A. Chapman Stadium for the third time ever. The Tulsa-Navy matchup will be the third home game for the Hurricane in the opening month of the season.
Navy beat TU 42-40 last year and went on to outdistance Tulsa by one game to win the West Division of The American. Navy finished the season with a 9-5 record and an appearance in the Armed Forces Bowl.
Tulsa’s only home game in October is with the Houston Cougars on Oct. 14 for Homecoming. Houston and Tulsa had a barn-burner last year in Houston as the 12th-ranked Cougars held on in the last seconds for a 38-31 victory. Houston finished the year with an appearance in the Las Vegas Bowl.
Tulsa travels to Storrs, Connecticut, to face the UConn Huskies on Oct. 21. Despite being in the same league for the previous three years, it will be the first-ever meeting between the two schools.
Tulsa travels to Tampa, Florida, to play the USF Bulls, under first-year coach Charlie Strong, on Nov. 18. Strong landed at USF after being fired at Texas. USF finished the 2016 season with an overall 11-2 record after defeating South Carolina in the Birmingham Bowl, and ended the year ranked 19th in the nation. In the only other meeting between the two schools, Tulsa dropped a 38-30 home decision to the Bulls in 2014.
Tulsa closes out the regular season at home against the 2016 American Athletic Conference Champion Temple Owls on Thanksgiving Weekend, Nov. 25. The Owls finished the 2016 campaign with a 10-4 record, including a win over Navy in the conference championship game.
“In the American Athletic Conference, we’ll play last year’s top two teams from the East Division with USF and Temple, and a UConn team that is sure to be improved with Coach Randy Edsall back as their head coach,” Montgomery said. “As we saw last year, our side of the division (West) is competitive week-in and week-out with games going down to the wire. I don’t anticipate that changing much this season with Navy, Houston, Memphis, SMU and Tulane.”
Game times and TV for the first three weeks of the season will be announced in June, and the remainder will be through the 12-day/6-day process.
The American Athletic Conference Championship Game between the East and West Division Champions will be played on Saturday, Dec. 2.
2017 Tulsa Football Schedule
- September 2 at Oklahoma State
- September 9 – Louisiana
- September 16 at Toledo
- September 23 – New Mexico
- September 30 – Navy
- October 7 at Tulane
- October 14 – Houston
- October 21 at Connecticut
- October 27 at SMU
- November 3 – Memphis
- November 18 at South Florida
- November 25 – Temple