Bears Finalize 2012 Football Slate
Feb. 6, 2012
SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State University has finalized its 2012 football schedule, an 11-game slate that will feature five home games, trips to two FBS opponents and a new league opponent.
Seventh-year head coach Terry Allen and the Bears begin the season with road games at Kansas State on Sept. 1 and Louisville on Sept. 8. The Bears are 0-2 all-time against the Big XII Wildcats, a team coming off a 10-3 campaign and Cotton Bowl appearance. This will be the first meeting between the Bears and Louisville. The Big East Cardinals were 7-6 in 2011 and made an appearance in the Belk Bowl.
Allen's squad will play its home opener on Sept. 15 against Ohio Valley Conference power Murray State. The Bears are 1-6 all-time against the Racers who are coming off a 7-4 campaign.
The two-game home stand continues on Sept. 22 with a Family Weekend battle against rival Southern Illinois in the Missouri Valley Football Conference opener for both teams. The Bears are 17-17 all-time against the Salukis.
Missouri State closes out the month of September at South Dakota State on Sept. 29. The Jackrabbits were 5-6 overall and 4-4 in the MVFC last season to tie for fourth place. MSU is seeking its first-ever win against SDSU after four previous meetings.
October begins with a road game at Indiana State on Oct. 6. The Sycamores will be looking for a solid homecoming outing after a 6-5 season in which they were 4-4 in conference action. The Bears lead ISU 16-10 overall with the teams splitting the last six meetings.
MSU returns to Plaster Field on Oct. 13 for their first-ever matchup with MVFC newcomer South Dakota. The Coyotes were 6-5 in 2011 and will make The Valley a 10-team league for the first time. The USD game will be the centerpiece of Showcase weekend at Missouri State.
On Oct. 20, Missouri State will continue conference play at Illinois State. The Redbirds were 7-4 last season, narrowly missing an FCS playoff bid and finishing 5-3 (third place) in the conference. MSU is 14-17-1 all-time against ISU.
Conference play returns to Springfield on Oct. 27 for a homecoming challenge from Western Illinois. The Bears have won three in a row from the Leathernecks in a series that is now tied 15-15-1. WIU was 2-9 last season and finished 1-7 in the MVFC to finish in ninth place.
The Bears will celebrate Senior Day in style on Nov. 3 with a visit from the defending Division I champions of North Dakota State. The Bison capped a 14-1 season with their first FCS title in 2011. NDSU shared the Valley regular-season title with Northern Iowa last year with identical 7-1 conference marks. The Bears are 2-2 all-time against the Bison with wins in two of the last three meetings against the defending national champs.
After a week off, the 2012 regular season will conclude at Northern Iowa on Nov. 17. Missouri State is 5-27 all-time against the Panthers and will look to end a six-game losing streak to UNI, which was an FCS playoff qualifier in 2011 and finished 10-3 overall.
All of the 2012 home games are slated to begin at 1 p.m. at Plaster Field, which has been the home of the Bears since 1941.