The dates aren’t set, but Tulane’s four-year path through the American Athletic Conference is fully laid out.
The league announced its football schedules from 2015-18 on Thursday afternoon, allowing the public a first glimpse into how The American will operate when it begins division play and expands into a 12-team league starting this summer.
Commissioner Mike Aresco chose the employ the same model Tulane played under while in Conference USA. In addition to the five teams with whom it shares the West Division — Memphis, Houston, SMU, Tulsa and Navy — Tulane will also match up against three teams from the East Division, rotating every year.
This ensures the Green Wave will face every AAC team at home and on the road during a four-year period.
“This format is a sensible and fair model that will protect traditional rivalries and allow each school to travel across our geographic footprint on a regular basis,” Aresco said. “It will make for an exciting and extremely competitive regular season, adding to the drama which annually makes the college football regular season the best in all of sports, and it will produce two strong and tested teams who will then compete in our inaugural conference championship game.”
Tulane’s first foray through division play includes home games against Central Florida, Houston, Connecticut and Tulsa along with road contests at Navy, SMU, Memphis and Temple.
After a 3-9 record in its first season as a member of The American, the Green Wave’s schedule features at least eight of the same opponents it played last year. However, Tulane does swap out a pair of conference foes with winning records (Cincinnati and East Carolina) for the league’s worst team (SMU) and its newest member (Navy).
The season opens for Tulane on Thursday, Sept. 3 against Duke in Yulman Stadium. The Wave then travels to Atlanta for a game at Georgia Tech on the following Saturday. On Nov. 14, Tulane renews its series against Army at a game in West Point, New York.
Tulane has yet to announce its fourth nonconference game, which is likely to be played at Yulman Stadium.
Home: Houston, Tulsa, UCF UConn
Away: Navy, Memphis, SMU, Temple
Home: Navy, Memphis, SMU, Temple
Away: Houston, Tulsa, UCF, UConn
Home: Houston, Tulsa, Cincinnati, USF
Away: Navy, Memphis, SMU, ECU
Home: Navy, Memphis, SMU, ECU
Away: Houston, Tulsa, Cicinnati, USF
Tulane redshirt freshman cornerback Parry Nickerson was awarded first-team Freshman All-America honors by USA Today and named to Athlon’s third-team All-Freshman list.
The West Jefferson High graduate started 11 games at cornerback, leading the Green Wave with six interceptions. He also broke up six other pass attempts, recorded 51 tackles and 2½ tackles for loss.
His six picks set a Tulane freshman record, surpassing former teammate Lorenzo Doss’ five interceptions in 2012 and was the seventh-most in school history.
Highlights included a game-winning snag in the end zone of a 31-24 victory over Houston on Nov. 8, one of two interceptions in that game.