UMass, Temple reportedly agree to home-and-home football series
GAZETTE FILE PHOTO According to sources, the University of Massachusetts and Temple have agreed to a home-and-home football series for 2015 and 2017. Purchase photo reprints »
AMHERST— The football rivalry between the University of Massachusetts and Temple that was expected to develop in the Mid-American Conference will now have a chance to grow outside of the conference.
According to sources familiar with the situation, UMass and Temple have agreed to a home-and-home series in 2015 and 2017. The Minutemen will host the Owls on Sept. 19, 2015 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough and would travel to Philadelphia for a Sept. 16, 2017 game.
Temple, which plays its home games in Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles, was a member of the MAC before joining the Big East for the 2012 football season. The Big East football league will become the American Athletic Conference this summer.
The Minutemen and Owls have never played football before.
The following is a look at UMass’ nonconference schedule from 2013-2019. All nonconference home games will be held at Gillette Stadium.:
2013: Aug. 31 at Wisconsin; Sept. 7 vs. Maine; Sept. 14 at Kansas State; Sept. 21 vs. Vanderbilt.
2014: Aug. 30 vs. Boston College; Sept. 6 vs. Colorado; Sept. 20 at Penn State; Oct. 4 at Vanderbilt.
2015: Sept. 12 at Colorado; Sept. 19 vs. Temple; Sept. 26 at Notre Dame. UMass needs to add one more game.
2016: Sept. 3 at Florida; Sept. 17 at Boston College. UMass needs to add two games.
2017: Sept. 16 at Temple; Sept. 23 at Indiana. UMass needs to add two games.
2018: Sept. 1 at Boston College; Sept. 8 vs. Vanderbilt. UMass needs to add two games.
2019: TBA at Colorado. UMass has three games to be announced.
Most experts have surmised that the Atlantic Coast Conference’s media rights agreement Monday likely ends major conference realignment in the foreseeable future. The deal would make it financially unfeasible for any ACC school to leave for another conference until 2027. The Pac 12, Big 12 and Big Ten have similar agreements in place.
The likelihood of stability going forward makes nonconference scheduling a lot easier because most schools know what their conference scheduling commitments are.
BACK TO WORK — While the spring game usually marks the end of spring football, this year’s game was a week early because the athletic department didn’t want it to conflict with the chancellor’s inauguration and other UMass 150th Anniversary events which are taking place this weekend. The Atlantic 10 women’s lacrosse tournament, which includes games on Friday and Sunday and practices Saturday, is also at McGuirk Stadium this weekend.
UMass coach Charley Molnar was glad to be back focusing just on football after Tuesday’s morning’s practice.
“It was nice. No distractions. No alumni game. No finish line. All that stuff is really in the past now,” Molnar said. “We just have to hone in on these last two practices after today. I told guys let’s put the pedal to the metal and don’t leave anything in the tank and use these three days to get better as a football team.
“This is it for us to get better as a team until August 4,” he continued. “Guys will make individual improvement through weight training and working out and throwing and catching, but as a team, this is it. Then we have to put it to rest for a while.”
Matt Vautour can be reached at email@example.com. Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at www.facebook.com/GazetteUMassCoverage.