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Louisiana-Monroe 2017 Schedule Released

The Sun Belt gave ULM no breaks with this schedule.

NCAA Football: UL Monroe at Oklahoma
Garrett Smith and ULM will look to make strides on offense in 2017.
Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

After going a somewhat surprising 4-8 in his first season, Matt Viator and ULM could be looking a a rough season in year two. The 2017 schedule was released today and the Warhawks have some major challenges.

NCAA Football: UL Monroe at Auburn
The roster is improved, but the win total may stay the same or decrease for ULM in 2017.
John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

ULM 2017 Schedule

Date Opponent
Date Opponent
August 31st at Memphis
September 9th at Florida State
September 16th Southern Miss
September 23rd at UL Lafayette
September 30th Coastal Carolina
October 7th at Texas State
October 14th Georgia State
October 21st at South Alabama
October 28th at Idaho
November 4th Appalachian State
November 11th Bye
November 18th at Auburn
Novmeber 25th Arkansas State

Non-Conference Play Could Get Ugly

The Warhawks have a brutal non-conference slate in front of them as they will take on some of the best quarterbacks in the country. In the opener they get former Tennessee signal caller Riley Ferguson who lit the AAC up last year at Memphis. They follow that up with a trip to Florida State to take on Deondre Francois and the ‘Noles. Then in the opener comes Southern Miss and their Air Raid attack. Last, but certainly not least, ULM travels to The Plains on November 18th to take on the highest profile transfer of the offseason in former Baylor QB Jarrett Stidham. That pass rush and secondary could get exposed early.

October Will Determine ULM’s Fate

It’s likely that three losses are inevitable coming out of the gate if you’re ULM. With the way things have gone, you probably have to think that ULM will drop to 1-9 in their last 10 against heated rival UL Lafayette in the Battle on the Bayou. After that comes a huge five game stretch that will determine ULM’s season. These next five (Coastal Carolina, at Texas State, Georgia State, at South Alabama, at Idaho) are where ULM could make some headway. The two home games against Coastal and Georgia State are probably the biggest games on the schedule.

No Luck With Byes

Unlike most of the Sun Belt, ULM will not get the advantage of having two byes. The Warhawks finish their season on Thanksgiving weekend and do not receive a bye until November 11th. That means 10 straight games to start the season. Then their two final games should be very difficult as they travel to Auburn and then host the defending Sun Belt champs.

Final Look

This is just a brutal slate for ULM and the Sun Belt office did not give Matt Viator’s club many breaks. ULM plays, arguably, the toughest non-conference schedule in the league and doesn’t get the opportunity to take advantage of the two bye system that the conference currently uses. If Viator can get this squad bowl eligible, or even five wins, he’s your Sun Belt coach of the year.