January 28, 2016

(STATS) - Playing Auburn in 2017 wasn't enough for Mercer. The Bears will take on Alabama as well.

The Southern Conference member announced Thursday it will make visits to Bryant-Denny Stadium in 2017 and 2021. The Bears' 2017 game at Auburn will be on Sept. 16, which is expected to be before the Alabama matchup.

"We are excited to add one of the elite college football programs to our schedule in 2017 and 2021," coach Bobby Lamb said. "This will be a great opportunity to test ourselves against a championship program in one of the most storied game-day environments in the country."

Mercer just completed its third season since returning to football. It knocked off then-No. 3 Chattanooga 17-14 on Nov. 7 while finishing 5-6.

The Bears will return all 11 starters on offense and 10 starters on defense for the 2016 season, which includes a Sept. 10 matchup at Georgia Tech.

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