KALAMAZOO, Mich. - Western Michigan football and the Mid-American
Conference announced the 2008 conference schedule this week and the
Broncos will play three of its West Division games in Waldo Stadium.
WMU will go back to an eight-game MAC schedule this upcoming season
with Ohio coming to Kalamazoo for Homecoming on Oct. 4 and Northern
Illinois opening the home slate on Sept. 6 for CommUniverCity Night.
WMU faces three postseason bowl participants in 2008, including
Illinois, which played USC in the Rose Bowl, and finished No. 20/18
in the Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches Polls, respectively.
As released earlier this year, Western Michigan will open 2008
playing its second Big 12 opponent in as many seasons when the
Broncos travel to Lincoln, Neb., to take on the Cornhuskers.
Nebraska was 6-6 during 2007, going 2-6 in the Big 12. WMU opens
the home and conference schedule with an early MAC West showdown
with Northern Illinois on CommUniverCity Night. The Brown & Gold
are 2-1 over the Huskies during head coach Bill Cubitâ€™s time atWMU, including two-straight victories.
"We are excited about our 2008 schedule. The competition we will
face during the non-conference portion will prepare our team for an
always difficult MAC slate. Every team in the Mid-American
Conference brings something different each week and preparing for
that is our task as we head into the spring season and summer work
outs. Playing Illinois at Ford Field is also another great
opportunity to showcase our University to our fans and alumni all
across the state of Michigan," said Cubit.
Western Michigan follows its home opener with a game against Idaho
in Moscow, Idaho, on Sept. 13. It will be just the second meeting
ever between these teams from the MAC and the WAC (Western Athletic
Conference). The only other time was on Nov. 18, 1972, which
resulted in a 27-16 Bronco victory. After Idaho, WMU returns home
for a game against Tennessee Tech, a Division I FCS team out of the
Ohio Valley Conference. The Golden Eagles finished the regular
season 4-6 and lost, 38-24, Eastern Kentucky in the first round of
the 2007 OVC Playoffs. This and the NIU game will kick off at 7
Temple is on the Broncosâ€™ schedule for the third-straight season
with Western Michigan making its second trip to Lincoln Financial
Field. The game is scheduled for Sept. 27 and will be the teamâ€™s
first trip back to Philadelphia since the 2005 season when the
Broncos won on a late field goal, 19-16.
Ohio is the second team from the MAC East Division to appear on
WMUâ€™s schedule in 2008 and is scheduled to be the Broncosâ€™
Homecoming opponent. The Oct. 4 game will take place at 2 p.m. WMU
holds a slim 29-28-1 advantange in the all-time series against the
Bobcats, a team that advanced to the MAC Championship game in 2006
and its first bowl game since 1968 during the same season.
Western Michigan will alternate away and home games during the
first seven weeks of the upcoming season with the first back-to-back
away games coming during the second and third weeks of October when
the Broncos visiting Buffalo, the third and final MAC East opponent
on the schedule, on Oct. 11 and Central Michigan on Oct. 18. It
will be the first time WMU travels to Buffalo for a game since a
31-17 win in 2002. Eastern Michigan follows the Chippewas on Nov. 1
for Education Day presented by Educational Community Credit Union
After WMUâ€™s home game at Ford Field against Illinois on Nov. 8,
the Broncos will close out the 2008 regular season with a pair of
MAC West games. The home season finale takes place on Nov. 15 when
Toledo visits Waldo Stadium for Senior Day. The game, which kicks
off at 2 p.m., will also mark Western Michiganâ€™s Salute to
Veterans ceremony. The Broncos are also 2-1 against the Rockets
under Cubit with wins coming during the past two seasons, including
a 42-28 victory in 2007, their first win in the Glass Bowl since
The Brown & Gold close out 2008 the same way it has six of the last
seven seasons, on the road. WMU will travel to Ball State on Nov.
25, two days before Thanksgiving. The Cardinals faced Rutgers in
the International Bowl this past season after the Broncos played in
the inaugural game in January of 2007.
The game against Illinois also marks a continued dedication to
competing against the Big Ten. Last season, WMU had its first Big
Ten team visit Waldo Stadium when Indiana was the opponent for the
home opener. The Broncos also traveled to Iowa in November, coming
away with a 28-19 victory. It will be the 10th time in as many
seasons that Western Michigan has faced a Big Ten opponent when the
Broncos take on Illinois at Ford Field.
"Western Michigan University and the Mid-American Conference have
worked very hard to put together a very attractive football schedule
for our fans, alumni and students in 2008," commented athletic
director Kathy Beauregard. "We are very excited to travel to
Nebraska for the first time in program history and we are equally
excited about the opportunity to work with Ford Field and the
University of Illinois for our game with the Illini on Nov. 8. As
always, we cannot be truly successful without our great fans and we
thank you for your loyal support of Western Michigan Athletics."
Western Michigan will announce the start time against Illinois at a
later date along with game times for all road contests. Game times
are subject to change so please visit www.wmubroncos.com for
updates. WMU football games to appear on television will also be
announced in the near future.