WMU News

Broncos announce 2003 football schedule

Feb. 19, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- A road trip to Michigan State, the return of Marshall to Kalamazoo and a Centennial Celebration game involving Virginia highlight the 2003 football season for Western Michigan University.

Western Michigan will play six home games at Waldo Stadium in 2003. Two of the Broncos' home opponents, No. 22 Virginia and No. 24 Marshall, finished ranked in the top 25 nationally last season. Other home games include Mid-American Conference rivals Central Michigan, Bowling Green and Ball State. Division I-AA William & Mary will be a first-time opponent.

There is also a possibility of WMU hosting the Mid-American Conference Championship Game,
which will be awarded to the West Division champion.

Western Michigan opens its 98th varsity season on Saturday, Aug. 30, at Michigan State. The schools last met in 1997 during coach Gary Darnell's first season at WMU.

The Broncos' home opener Sept. 6 features William & Mary on CommUniverCity Night. Atlantic
Coast Conference member Virginia, a 48-22 winner over No. 13 West Virginia in the 2002 Continental Bowl, visits Sept. 13 as part of WMU's Centennial Celebration.

Following a bye week on Sept. 20, Western Michigan opens its MAC schedule with a trip to Ohio
Sept. 27. WMU last played in Athens during the 1997 campaign. WMU then travels to Eastern Michigan Oct. 4 before hitting a difficult stretch of games against proven competition.

WMU hosts Bowling Green on homecoming Saturday, Oct. 11; travels to Northern Illinois Oct. 18
and entertains Marshall Oct. 25. Those three opponents had a combined record of 28-9 last season. Marshall captured the MAC Championship and GMAC Bowl title.

Western Michigan takes a break from league action to face Connecticut Nov. 1 in the new 40,000-seat Rentschler Field in East Hartford. UConn, which begins Big East play in 2005, returns to Kalamazoo for CommUniverCity Night Sept. 2, 2004.

The latter part of WMU's MAC schedule includes a Nov. 8 home encounter versus Ball State, followed by a visit from Central Michigan Nov. 15. The Broncos' regular season finale is slated for Nov. 22 at Toledo.

"It's another competitive, challenging schedule," said Darnell.

2003 WMU Football Schedule

Starting times for all games are subject to change. All game-dates are Saturdays.

Aug. 30   at Michigan State
Sept. 6   William & Mary, CommUniverCity Night, 7 p.m.
Sept. 13  Virginia, Centennial Game/Southwest Fest, 2 p.m.
Sept. 20  Bye
Sept. 27  at Ohio
Oct. 4    at Eastern Michigan
Oct. 11   Bowling Green, Homecoming, 2 p.m.
Oct. 18   at Northern Illinois
Oct. 25   Marshall, Education Day/Family Fest, 2 p.m.
Nov. 1    at Connecticut
Nov. 8    Ball State, Veterans/Military Day, 2 p.m.
Nov. 15   Central Michigan, Senior Day, 2 p.m.
Nov. 22   at Toledo

Media contact: Daniel Jankowski, 269 387-4138, daniel.jankowski@wmich.edu

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