The University of North Alabama has released its 2017 football schedule that includes eight Gulf South Conference contests and non-conference games against Texas A&M-Commerce and Central Washington.
UNA, coming off an 11-2 season that saw the Lions win a fourth straight GSC title and advance to the NCAA Division II National Championship Game, will be in its first season under new head coach Chris Willis, a 15-year member of the North Alabama coaching staff.
North Alabama’s first five opponents on the 2017 schedule all won at least seven games last season and three advanced to the NCAA Division II Playoffs.
The Lions will open their season on Thursday night, August 31 at home against Texas A&M-Commerce at Braly Stadium at 6 p.m. Texas A&M-Commerce also went 11-2 a year ago, winning the Lone Star Conference championship before advancing to the second round of the Division II Playoffs where the Lions fell to Grand Valley State.
After an open date on September 9, UNA will travel to Valdosta State to open Gulf South Conference play against the Blazers on September 16. The Lions will then host West Alabama on September 23 at 6:00 p.m., travel to West Georgia on September 30 for a 1:00 p.m. contest, then host Florida Tech for Homecoming at 6 p.m. on October 7.
North Alabama will play back-to-back road games on October 14 and 21, travelling to Shorter on the 14th and Central Washington on the 21st.
The Lions will return home to Braly Stadium on October 28 to host Delta State at 6 p.m., travel to Pensacola, Fla., to face West Florida at 4:00 p.m. on November 4, then host Mississippi College at 1:30 on November 11 to close the regular-season.
The NCAA Division II Playoffs begin on November 18 and conclude with the National Championship Game in Kansas City, Kan., on December 16.
2017 UNIVERSITY OF NORTH ALABAMA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
Aug. 31 Thu TEXAS A&M-COMMERCE HOME 6:00
Sept. 9 Sat Open
Sept. 16 Sat *at Valdosta State Valdosta, Ga. TBA
Sept. 23 Sat *WEST ALABAMA HOME 6:00 PM
Sept 30 Sat *at West Georgia Carrollton, Ga. 1:00 PM
Oct. 7 Sat *FLORIDA TECH HOME 6:00 PM
Oct. 14 Sat *at Shorter Rome, Ga. TBA
Oct. 21 Sat at Central Washington Ellensburg, Wash. 3:00 PM
Oct. 28 Sat *DELTA STATE HOME 6:00 PM
Nov. 4 Sat *at West Florida Pensacola, Fla. 4:00 PM
Nov. 11 Sat *MISSISSIPPI COLLEGE HOME 1:30 PM