NORFOLK, Va. (NSUSpartans.com) – Four home games at William “Dick” Price Stadium and seven road contests, include a pair of FBS matchups and the return of the Battle of the Bay, are featured on the 2021 Norfolk State football schedule released Thursday.
The Spartans kick off the schedule with a pair of road games against Football Bowl Subdivision opponents. The season opener is Saturday, Sept. 4 at the University of Toledo. The game will be the first-ever between the teams and NSU’s third all-time against a school from the Mid-American Conference, following matchups at Ohio in 2012 and Buffalo in 2014.
The following week, the Spartans face an ACC opponent for the first time in their history with a trip to Winston-Salem, N.C., to meet Wake Forest. The Demon Deacons are coming off their fifth consecutive bowl appearance in 2020.
The home schedule begins on Sept. 18 against a former CIAA foe, Elizabeth City State. The teams have met 56 times previously, with the last game coming in 2016.
Another first-time foe awaits NSU on Sept. 25, as the Spartans travel to Pennsylvania to face St. Francis University. The Spartans have never faced a team from the Northeast Conference.
October’s slate opens with the resumption of the Battle of the Bay rivalry at Hampton University on Oct. 2. This will mark the 56th meeting between the teams but first since 2017, HU’s final year in the MEAC before the Pirates joined the Big South Conference.
Following a bye week, NSU hosts its second game of the year, and final non-conference matchup, on Oct. 16 against first-time foe Virginia-Lynchburg. The game will serve as the Spartans’ Homecoming contest for 2021.
The remainder of the season consists of MEAC competition. The conference includes six football-playing institutions this fall and thus five league games per team. NSU has road games at Howard (Oct. 23), North Carolina Central (Nov. 6) and Delaware State (Nov. 13) and home matchups with Morgan State (Oct. 30) and South Carolina State (Nov. 20) within conference play.
The 2021 Celebration Bowl, pitting the MEAC champion against the SWAC champion, is scheduled for Dec. 18 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Season ticket information will be released later this spring. Fans interested in receiving ticket information when it becomes available are encouraged to fill out the request form at NSUSpartans.com.