Hurricane add Ohio State to non-conference schedule in 2016
BY BILL HAISTEN World Sports Writer
Thursday, August 16, 2012
8/16/12 at 3:42 AM
Related story: TU football practice report.
During conversations with Class of 2013 recruits, University of Tulsa coach Bill Blankenship can brag about the school's prestigious academic status along with the football program's recent success rate - three 10-win seasons in the last five years and seven bowl appearances since 2003.
Blankenship says he now can add this to the sales pitch: "Before you graduate, we're going to be playing at Ohio State."
TU already was scheduled to face an OSU - Oklahoma State - during the 2016 season. But when another OSU - Ohio State - offered TU a one-game contract, for a 2016 contest to be played at the Buckeyes' 102,329-seat Ohio Stadium, Oklahoma State complied with TU's request to push the next Golden Hurricane-Cowboys contest to 2017.
"We want to play one Top-10 team every year," Blankenship said. "We've been fortunate to have Oklahoma on the schedule, and we'll continue to have them for several years.
"This year, it's Arkansas. We can do the occasional Notre Dame or Ohio State. That's a big deal for us. I had never been to Notre Dame before we played up there, and I've never been to Ohio State. It should be a great experience for our players."
Hurricane athletic director Ross Parmley also confirmed that TU has agreed to two-game football scheduling contracts with Toledo (2016 in Tulsa, 2017 in Toledo) and with New Mexico (2015 at New Mexico, 2017 in Tulsa). The school is close to finalizing a two-game deal with Utah, Parmley reported.
TU faces Oklahoma in 2013 (in Norman), 2014 (at H.A. Chapman Stadium) and 2015 (in Norman).
When the Hurricane played at Arkansas in 2008, TU was paid $850,000. When the Hurricane visited Notre Dame in 2010 - and defeated the Fighting Irish 28-27 - TU was paid slightly less than $800,000.
The rate on such games has increased.
For the Hurricane's Nov. 3 contest at Arkansas, TU will receive a payment believed to be slightly less than $1 million. And for the 2016 trip to Ohio State, it is believed that TU will collect slightly more than $1 million - making it the most lucrative single athletic event in university history.
"Ohio State initiated the (dialogue)," Parmley said. "We started having conversations during the spring and got it finalized during the summer.
"When scheduling opportunities come up, Bill and I discuss it and decide whether we want to pursue it. There is always a financial component and a competition component. A lot of factors have to be considered. Coach Blankenship and I agreed that Ohio State was an attractive opportunity for TU."
TU's 2013 nonconference schedule includes a season-opening trip to Bowling Green, a trip to OU and home games against Colorado State and Iowa State.
"It's probably one of the better nonconference schedules we've had," Parmley said. "It's a good balance for us."
TU football nonconference opponents
Sept. 1: at Iowa State
Sept. 15: Nicholls St.
Sept. 22: Fresno State
Nov. 3: at Arkansas
at Bowling Green
at Colorado State
at New Mexico
at Ohio State
at Oklahoma State
At Iowa State
11 a.m. Sept. 1
Radio: KRMG am740, fm102.3
Original Print Headline: TU adds Buckeyes to schedule
Bill Haisten 918-581-8397