The Demons will play their first 12-game schedule since 2008, guided by a new head coach to be named soon by NSU director of athletics Greg Burke. Four of the home games are among Northwestern’s closing six Southland Conference contests, including an Oct. 19 homecoming game as old rival Southeastern Louisiana visits and the traditional season-ending “Battle for Chief Caddo,” the largest trophy in sports, with nearby Stephen F. Austin.
"There are many positives about this 2013 schedule, most notably renewing the in-state rivalry with Southern University. Much appreciation is expressed to Demon football All-American and current Southern athletic director William Broussard for helping facilitate this two-year contract," said Burke.
Matchups between the Demons and Jaguars have drawn four of the top five crowds in Turpin Stadium history, including the stadium record of 17,528 in 2000 and 16,706 in 1998, when Broussard was a junior center on a Sam Goodwin-coached NSU squad that reached the national playoff semifinals. Bleachers have been added to the permanent seating configuration for the 15,971-seat stadium for each of Southern’s previous visits during a 10-game series, tied at 5-5, from 1993-2002.
The Saturday, Sept. 7 Southern game kicks off the home schedule that includes another non-conference game on Sept. 28 against NAIA member Langston, whose athletic director is 1965 Heisman Trophy winner Mike Garrett.
The Oct. 19 SLU game is the first Southland Conference contest of the season in Turpin Stadium, followed by three more: Nov. 2 against defending league co-champion Central Arkansas, then Lamar a week later on Nov. 9 and the Nov. 23 SFA matchup.
"Having six home games, including four of the final six at Turpin Stadium, is great for our players and fans," said Burke, noting NSU was 4-1 at home last season with 57 letterwinners including 16 of 22 offensive and defensive starters due back in 2013.
The new coach’s debut will come on Thursday night, Aug. 29 in the first meeting since 1989 between the Demons and the Bears of Missouri State out of the Missouri Valley Conference.
Following the home opener against Southern, Northwestern will be on the road for visits to Cincinnati (Sept. 14) and Alabama-Birmingham (Sept. 21).
"The development of each football schedule takes on a unique life of its own. Three different options were in place for the Sept. 21 date but it took close to six months before circumstances evolved to the point that we could get the contract signed with UAB," said Burke, who added that the 2014 schedule is already set.
Kickoff times for the six 2013 home games will be announced later, he said.
2013 Northwestern State Football Schedule
(Home games in bold)
Aug. 29 - at Missouri State Sept. 7 - SOUTHERN
Sept. 14 - at Cincinnati
Sept. 21 - at Alabama-Birmingham.
Sept. 28 - LANGSTON
Oct. 5 - open
Oct. 12 - at Nicholls State
Oct. 19 - SOUTHEASTERN LOUISIANA (Homecoming)
Oct. 26 – at Sam Houston State
Nov. 2 – CENTRAL ARKANSAS
Nov. 9 – LAMAR
Nov. 16 – at McNeese
Nov. 23 – STEPHEN F. AUSTIN