The Louisiana Tech Bulldogs and N.C. State Wolfpack announced a three game football series on Monday. The Dawgs will travel to Raleigh, NC on October 2, 2021 and September 7, 2024. The Wolfpack will return the favor and make an appearance in Joe Aillet Stadium on September 6, 2025.
La Tech and NC State have faced off once before. The 40-14 Wolfpack victory was the opener of the 2013 season. It was also Tech’s first game as a C-USA member and the first game under Skip Holtz.
This announcement was part of a larger announcement from NC State where they also revealed home and home series with BYU and USF. Both of these will be true 1-for-1 series, while the Tech series is the lone 2-for-1 in the announcement.
Although Bulldogs fans would likely have preferred a true home and home series, this is still better than the traditional one-off road game. The Bulldogs’ last two home games against Power 5 opponents both came against Mississippi State as part of a six-game series, first in 2008 and then this past season. As for the future, the home game against NC State makes two future games in the Joe against the P5. Prior to NC State’s visit in 2025, Baylor will come to Ruston in 2023. This game was originally scheduled for 2021, but was moved back to make room for the first NC State game.
After a long lull without any future opponents being announced, this is the second in the past month or so. Just before facing SMU in the Frisco Bowl, Tech announced the two schools would also meet in a home and home series in 2021 and 2023.
With these announcements, Tech’s future non-conference schedules look like this:
La Tech Non-Conference Schedules
|at South Alabama||at Texas||at UNLV||at Mississippi State|
|Southern||Grambling State||at Baylor||SMU|
|at LSU||at Bowling Green||at NC State|
|at Mississippi State||UMass|
|at Baylor||at SMU||at NC State||NC State|
Moving the Baylor home game back means Tech will avoid a rough OOC schedule of three P5 teams plus SMU in 2021, but it also removes the possibility of seven home games that year assuming the final game yet to be scheduled will be against an FCS foe. However, that possibility now exists for 2023 should Tech secure an FCS opponent for that season to round out the schedule. Tech had seven home games in 2017, the first time that had happened since the 1930s.
Still, the 2021 season has a good looking schedule nonetheless. Two decent but not-Alabama P5 foes, SMU at home, and some FCS school to be named later.
The biggest concern now is the fact that both upcoming 2-for-1 series have the home game as the final game. This opens up the possibility that NC State and/or Baylor could get the two home games against Tech and then just buy out the final game and not come to Ruston. We’ll just have to hope that they don’t do this and/or the buyout is really high.
Final thoughts: this is a good series. Tech will get in excess of a million dollars for the first game against the Pack, then get a home and home with a solid ACC opponent. The SMU announcement last month means that Tech has recently secured five exciting football games for the next decade. NC State is a decent ACC team and could be tough to beat, but they aren’t Clemson, Florida State, etc. A La Tech squad on top of it’s game should be able to secure at least one victory in this series. Add to that a similar opportunity against Baylor and the 2020’s could have some exciting times ahead for Louisiana Tech football.