Rutgers’ philosophical change in its football scheduling took another step forward today when it was officially released the Scarlet Knights will host Kansas in 2015, and return the game in 2018.
It will mark the second non-conference BCS opponent on the Scarlet Knights’ 2015 schedule, and the Sept. 26 kickoff is a week after Rutgers travels Penn State.
The Scarlet Knights will also play two non-conference BCS opponents in 2018, and there is room to add non-conference BCS opponents in 2016 and 2017.
Rutgers has not played two non-conference BCS schools since 2006, when it defeated North Carolina and Illinois to start what turned into an 11-2 season.
The only other times in former coach Greg Schiano’s 11-year tenure Rutgers played two non-conference BCS teams in a season was 2004 (Michigan State and Vanderbilt) and 2002 (Tennessee and Notre Dame).
“We are excited about our new series with the Kansas Jayhawks in 2015 and 2018 and bringing our fans another great non-conference opponent at High Point Solutions Stadium,” athletic director Tim Pernetti said in a statement. “We remain hard at work every day on football scheduling to do whatever it takes to deliver an exciting slate of future games for all of our great Rutgers Football fans.”
The agreement to play Kansas gives the Scarlet Knights home-and-home series with Arkansas (2012 and 2013), Penn State (2014 and 2015), Kansas (2015 and 2018), UCLA (2016 and 2017) and Miami (2018 and 2019).
It also means Rutgers will host a non-conference BCS opponent in five of the next six seasons (excluding 2017), but with scheduling room to add non-conference opponents beginning in 2016.
Rutgers will return the game against Kansas on Sept. 15, 2018, and a week later will host Miami.
The deal to bring the Jayhawks to Piscataway, N.J., for the first time also means Rutgers’ non-conference schedule is set through 2015.
At Fresno State – Aug. 29 (season opener)
Norfolk State – Sept. 7
Eastern Michigan – Sept. 14
Arkansas – Sept. 21
Howard – Aug. 30 (season opener)
Penn State – Sept. 13
At Navy – Sept. 20
Tulane – Sept. 27
Norfolk State – Sept. 5 (season opener)
At Penn State – Sept. 19
Kansas – Sept. 26
At Army (Yankee Stadium) - November 21
UCLA – Sept. 1 (season opener)
Howard – Sept. 10
At UCLA – Sept. 2 (season opener)
Morgan State – Sept. 9
At Kansas – Sept. 15
Miami – Sept. 22
At Miami – Sept. 21