JONESBORO — Entering its first season under new head coach Butch Jones, the Arkansas State football team announced its 2021 schedule Monday.

A-State will open its upcoming campaign with back-to-back home games for the first time since 1987, hosting Central Arkansas in its season opener on Sept. 4 and facing Memphis the following Saturday on Sept. 11. The Red Wolves will also open their season at home for the sixth time over the last nine years.

A-State and Central Arkansas will play each other for the 27th time and second consecutive season after picking up a 50-27 victory over the Bears at Centennial Bank Stadium last year.

Set to face Memphis for the 60th time, the Red Wolves have played the Tigers more than any other opponent in school history. The two squads will meet for the second consecutive year, but the first time in Jonesboro since the 2012 season.

The Red Wolves will travel to Seattle the following week on Sept. 18 for their first ever matchup against Washington, which is the first of back-to-back road games that will also see them face Tulsa at H.A. Chapman Stadium on Sept. 25.

The game at Washington will be A-State’s first against a Pac-12 member since playing at USC in 2015, while it is set to play Tulsa for the sixth time in school history. The two programs most recently met in 2018, when the Red Wolves collected a 29-20 road win.

Holding a 14-6 all-time record in Sun Belt Conference openers, the Red Wolves will open league play at Georgia Southern on Oct. 2. A-State will actually face the Eagles in its first conference game of the season for the fourth time in six years (2021, 2018, 2017, 2016).

Following the three-game road swing, Arkansas State will play its next two games at home on a Thursday night. The five-time Sun Belt champions will host Coastal Carolina, the conference’s 2020 co-champion, in the first of those two contests on Oct. 7.

One of four Sun Belt teams with two midweek games on its schedule, A-State will have its only open week of the season before catching the league’s other co-champion from last year, Louisiana, on Oct. 21. The two programs will meet in a midweek contest for the seventh time over the last 10 seasons (2012-21).

The Red Wolves return to the road on Oct. 30, when they will play their first game at Hancock Whitney Stadium against South Alabama. Their previous four games against the Jaguars in Mobile were played at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, where they also played four consecutive GoDaddy Bowl games at the conclusion of the 2011-14 seasons.

The month of November will begin on the 6th with a Saturday game against Appalachian State at Centennial Bank Stadium, giving A-State three home conference games featuring one of the Sun Belt outright or co-champions over the last five seasons. The Red Wolves last hosted the Mountaineers in 2018.

Arkansas State will continue Sun Belt play with back-to-back road contests against ULM and Georgia State on Nov. 13 and 20, respectively. The Red Wolves will then close out the regular season on Nov. 27 against Texas State at Centennial Bank Stadium, where they have posted a winning record each of the last 16 seasons (2005-20).

The television networks for all Sun Belt Conference (SBC) games, including midweek contests, will be announced at a later date. The 2021 season will be the 10th straight year every SBC home game will appear on an ESPN platform. The 2021 Sun Belt Conference Football Championship Game is set for Saturday, Dec. 4.

Season tickets for the Red Wolves’ 2021 campaign are available for purchase, and the renewal period (April 1 deadline) for current season ticket holders is also underway. Tickets may be purchased or renewed through the A-State Ticket Office, located at First National Bank Arena’s lower red entrance, in person, by phone at 870-972-2781 or online at AStateRed Wolves.com.

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