The first Eugene appearance by Ohio State University since 1967 highlights a home-and-home series between the University of Oregon and the Buckeyes as announced jointly by the two schools Tuesday, according to the Ducks’ Director of Athletics Rob Mullens.
The intersectional match-up would commence in Autzen Stadium on Sept. 12, 2020, with Oregon returning to Columbus, Ohio on Sept. 11, 2021.
The game would mark Ohio State’s second visit ever to the state of Oregon as the Buckeyes traveled west during the inaugural year of Autzen Stadium.
The two schools last met in the 2010 Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., with Ohio State prevailing, 26-17. All but three of the eight contests have been played in Ohio Stadium, with two of them occurring in the post season (1957 and 2010 Rose Bowls).
“We are excited to add a home and home series with Ohio State as it provides another major conference op-ponent to our future schedule,” Mullens said. “The Pac-12 and Big Ten have enjoyed a long-standing relation-ship, so the opportunity to add another Big Ten opponent was attractive. We have two of the most passionate fan bases in college football and the atmosphere at both Ohio Stadium and Autzen Stadium are among the best in college football. Attracting top teams to Autzen Stadium remains a goal as this is the type of matchup our loyal fans love.”
The series was one of three additions to Oregon’s future football schedules confirmed by the school’s athletics department Tuesday, with the Ducks scheduled to host Georgia State in 2015 and Bowling Green in Eugene to open the 2018 season.
Oregon will host Tennessee next season in Eugene on Sept. 14 to conclude the home-and-home agreement that witnessed the Ducks traveling to Knoxville in 2010 (48-13 Oregon win). Michigan State is scheduled to play in Autzen Stadium in 2014, with Oregon returning to East Lansing in 2015 in addition to the home game with Georgia State.
Texas A&M is slated to play at Oregon in 2018 along with Bowling Green, while the Ducks will make their first visit ever to College Station, Texas in 2019.
“This will be a great opportunity for our fans to be a part of an intersectional battle that has not taken place in Eugene very often,” Oregon head coach Chip Kelly said. “I’ve always been a proponent of playing the highest level of competition possible. I’m a firm believer that you make yourself better when pushed by the level of your competition.”
In the last 14 years, Oregon has completed home-and-home series with Michigan State (1998-99), Wisconsin (2000-01), Mississippi State (2002-03), Michigan (2003-07), Oklahoma (2004-06), and Purdue (2008-09).
Georgia State’s football program has competed only three seasons and is transitioning from the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) under former Georgia Tech, Alabama and Kentucky head coach Bill Curry. It has been accepted into the Sun Belt Conference beginning on July 1, 2013 and will be eligible for the league’s football championship beginning with the 2014 season.
Bowling Green, a member of the Mid-American Conference, has participated in four bowl games in the last nine years prior to this season’s 5-3 record.