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Michigan State adds Prairie View A&M as replacement opponent on 2024 football schedule

On3 imageby:Jim Comparoni02/07/24

JimComparoni

East Lansing, Mich.Michigan State has filled the vacant slot on its 2024 football schedule with Prairie View A&M, according to a social media release issued by the Spartan football program on Wednesday evening.

Prairie View A&M replaces the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns, who opted out of its contract to play at Michigan State in early January. Louisiana reportedly will pay a $500,000 opt out, in accordance with its contract with Michigan State

Michigan State will play host to Prairie View A&M in game three of its schedule on Sept. 14. Michigan State is scheduled to open on Saturday, Aug. 31 against Florida Atlantic, and then play at Maryland on Sept. 7.

Michigan State will close out non-conference play against Prairie View A&M on Sept. 14 and then play at Boston College on Sept. 21. Big Ten play will resume on Sept. 28 when Ohio State visits Michigan State.

Prairie View A&M is an NCAA Division I Football Championship Series (FCS) program (formerly Division 1-AA). Prairie View A&M is an Historically Black University, located in Prairie View, Texas.

Prairie View A&M is a member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference, and posted a 6-6 record last year. Prairie View A&M played one game against an FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) team last year, losing to SMU, 69-0.

Louisiana dropped Michigan State and replaced the Spartans with Wake Forest on its schedule. Michigan State had a vacancy in its 12-game schedule for nearly a month, following Louisiana’s decision.

Prairie View A&M went 6-5 in 2022 and did not play an FBS opponent that year. 

In 2021, Prairie View A&M went 7-5, and lost to Texas A&M, 52-3, in its only game against an FBS opponent. 

Prairie View A&M is coached by Bubba McDowell, who will be in his third year as head coach of the Panthers. McDowell spent 10 years as an assistant coach at Prairie View A&M before becoming head coach in 2022. 

McDowell played six years in the NFL as a defensive back, earning second-team All-Pro honors with the Houston Oilers in 1991. 

In 2023, SWAC teams played eight FBS opponents, going 0-8.

Florida A&M lost to South Florida, 38-24; Bethune-Cookman (which went 3-8 on the year) lost to Miami, 48-7 and lost to Memphis, 56-14; Alcorn State lost to Southern Mississippi, 40-14; Grambling lost to LSU, 72-10; Texas Southern lost to Toledo, 71-3 and Rice, 59-7; and Arkansas-Pine Bluff lost to Tulsa, 42-7. 

SWAC members Alabama State, Jackson State, Mississippi Valley State, Alcorn State, Grambling, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Texas Southern and Southern University each played an 11-game schedule last year. Prairie View was slated for an 11-game schedule prior to adding Michigan State as a 12th game.  

Last year, Notre Dame played an HBCU opponent for the first time, beating Tennessee State, 56-3. Tennessee State, an FCS team, is a member of the Ohio Valley Conference.

SpartanMag’s attempts to reach members of the athletic department for comment were not immediately returned.

Michigan State’s 2024 football schedule:

OpponentDate
Florida AtlanticAug. 31
at MarylandSept. 7
Prairie View A&MSept. 14
at Boston CollegeSept. 21
Ohio StateSept. 28
at OregonOct. 5
IowaOct. 19
at MichiganOct. 26
IndianaNov. 2
at IllinoisNov. 16
PurdueNov. 23
RutgersNov. 30

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