After three of their non-conference games got canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, USF officially announced a replacement game on Thursday as they will host The Citadel on Sep. 12 at Raymond James Stadium.*
This comes after some
late night early morning reports floated that USF would be heading to South Bend to take on Notre Dame on Sep. 19.
The Bulldogs have been busy adding non-conference opponents to their schedule after the announcement last week that the Southern Conference was the latest FCS league to cancel fall competitions due to the health and safety concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, the SoCon presidents have allowed their member programs to continue playing non-conference opponents if they desired. The Citadel already confirmed earlier this week they will head to Clemson to play Jeff Scott’s former squad on Sep. 19 in addition to a game against Eastern Kentucky.
USF and The Citadel have squared off only twice in their history in 1997 and 1998, respectively, with the Bulldogs handing the inaugural Bulls their first ever loss 10-7 in Charleston, S.C. and USF winning the following year 45-6 in Tampa.
According to the Post and Courier, The Citadel will receive a payout of $275,000 for the game.
The Bulldogs are coming off a 6-6 record in 2019, a slate that included a thrilling 27-24 OT victory at Georgia Tech the week after the Yellow Jackets beat USF in a game where they only passed for 30 yards. Under Head Coach Brent Thompson, the Bulldogs have ranked in the top ten in rushing offense in each of the last four seasons with his vaunted triple-option offense.
Jeff Scott will get to play a familiar opponent for the (as of now) season opener, as Clemson routed the Bulldogs 61-3 in 2017 while Scott was Co-OC of the Tigers.
The Bulls reportedly have one more opening to fill out a full 12-game schedule, but with Sep. 5 quickly approaching, it is unknown the likelihood of getting a game in by then.
*This is assuming the football season proceeds as scheduled which is fluid at best.