In what has become an annual tradition, the Tulane football team will open 2019 on a Thursday.

Making official what coach Willie Fritz intimated Monday, the school confirmed Thursday it will play Florida International on Aug. 29 at Yulman Stadium, the Thursday before Labor Day. Kickoff will be 7 p.m., with any broadcast network announced at a later date.

The Green Wave, which finished above .500 (7-6) for the first time since 2013 and won a bowl game for the first time since 2002, returns quarterback Justin McMillan, 1,000-yard rusher Darius Bradwell and a host of defensive starters from a team that beat UL-Lafayette 41-24 in the Cure Bowl.

This will be the sixth time in seven seasons Tulane will start on a Thursday rather than a Saturday, and the Wave will be searching for its first opening-night victory since 2013. It lost its 2018 Thursday opener to Wake Forest at Yulman Stadium, 23-17 in overtime, lost to Wake Forest 7-3 on the road in 2016, lost to Duke 37-7 in 2015 at home and fell 38-31 in double overtime at Tulsa in 2014.

Tulane was an underdog ranging from 6 to 17 points in all of those games but almost certainly will be favored against Florida International, which capped off a 9-4 season by beating Toledo 35-32 in the Bahamas Bowl. FIU, a member of the Sun Belt, surprised the Wave 23-10 in Miami in 2017.

The last time Tulane won a Thursday opener was in 2013–4-7 against Jackson State. The Wave also beat Southeastern Louisiana 27-21 in its 2010 Thursday opener.

Follow Guerry Smith on Twitter, @guersmith