BYU Football Schedules Series With UCF, Rice

Sep 24, 2019, 10:47 AM | Updated: 4:30 pm

Wide receiver Tre Nixon #16 and place kicker Matthew Wright #11 of the UCF Knights take the field b...

Wide receiver Tre Nixon #16 and place kicker Matthew Wright #11 of the UCF Knights take the field before the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl between LSU and Central Florida at State Farm Stadium on January 01, 2019 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

PROVO, Utah – BYU has scheduled games with the University of Central Florida (UCF) from the American Athletic Conference, and two games against Rice University from Conference USA.

UCF has been one of the most successful programs in college football the past few seasons. BYU will travel to Orlando for the first of a two-game series on November 11th, 2023. The Knights make a return trip to Provo the following year on August 31st, 2024.

This announcement comes one day after BYU and the University of Utah jointly announced a break in their football rivalry for the 2022 and 2023 seasons. Utah is reportedly going to play the University of Florida in those seasons. UCF fills the void left by Utah for the 2023 slate.

BYU is still looking to fill the 2022 date left by the Utes scheduling Florida. One team that does have open dates on their schedule is the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The Irish still owe BYU one game and the Cougars Athletic Director Tom Holmoe has said in the past that the final outcome will end up being better than the Irish buying out the game.

BYU and UCF last faced each other on a Thursday night nationally televised ESPN broadcast during the 2014 season in Orlando. The Cougars hosted the Knights in 2011 in Provo.

Two game series versus Rice

The series announcement with Rice University is a revival of an old WAC matchup from the 16-team Western Athletic Conference days in the 1990s. BYU will host the Owls in Provo on September 29th, 2023 and then travel to Houston for a game on September 27, 2025. The last time these two programs squared off on the gridiron was in 1997 when they were conference foes.

Future Schedules

With the additions of UCF and Rice to the 2023 schedule, BYU now has 11 games scheduled for that season.

The 2024 schedule now has eight games on the docket and 2025 slate has six games already in place.

Since 2011, BYU has been an FBS Independent program that creates their own schedule every year. Through the first four weeks of the 2019 season, BYU has played the 10th toughest schedule and is the only program who opened with four Power Five programs.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU Football Schedules Series With UCF, Rice