In the recent past, the announcement of the Memphis Tigers new football schedule didn't move anybody's needle.
But, with the arrival of coaches like Justin Fuente and now Mike Norvell, Tiger football is now appointment scheduling.
The slate of games for 2017 just released. Here are some highlights of each opponent:
• Aug. 31: Louisiana-Monroe's first trip to Memphis since 2000 and the Warhawks' first visit as a member of the Sun Belt Conference; Louisiana-Monroe's last trip to the Liberty Bowl was as a FBS independent
• Sept. 9: Tigers' first meeting with UCF since 2013 and their first trip to Orlando since 2011; also earliest league opener for Memphis since 2008 (vs. Rice; Sept. 6, 2008)
• Sept. 16: UCLA's first trip to play Memphis in the Liberty Bowl, but not the Bruins' first trip to play in the Bluff City; UCLA played Alabama in the 1976 Liberty Bowl
• Sept. 23: Facing Southern Illinois for the first time in program history; fifth time in the last six seasons Memphis has a first-time foe on its schedule
• Sept. 30: Tigers' first trip to play in the city of Atlanta since 1981 when Memphis posted a 28-15 win at Georgia Tech
• Oct. 6: Memphis' second trip to Connecticut in program history; last played at the Huskies' home in 2013
• Oct. 14: Tigers welcome Navy, the American Athletic Conference West Division champion, to the Liberty Bowl; Memphis defeated the 2015 AAC West champion, Houston, at the Liberty Bowl in 2016
• Oct. 19: Memphis plays at Houston on a short week (four days between games); since 2000, Memphis has a 5-2 record in "short-week" games, including wins the last two seasons over Cincinnati (2015) and Temple (2016)
• Oct. 27: Tigers try to extend win streak in the series with the Green Wave to 11-straight
• Nov. 3: Head coach Mike Norvell's first trip to Tulsa, where he started his FBS coaching career; served as assistant for the Golden Hurricane from 2007-10
• Nov. 11: BYE/OPEN date; Memphis' latest bye/open since 2002 when the Tigers' bye/open date was Nov. 16
• Nov. 18: Memphis outscored SMU 162-17 in last three meetings (2014-16)
• Nov. 25: East Carolina makes first trip to the Liberty Bowl since 2011; match-up is the first between the two programs as American Athletic Conference opponents (last meeting was in 2012 in Conference USA)
The Tigers posted an 8-5 overall record and 5-3 American Athletic Conference in 2016. Memphis earned a Boca Raton Bowl berth, marking the program's third-consecutive postseason invitation.
The 2017 Memphis football schedule is as follows:
Aug. 31 Louisiana-Monroe
Sept. 9 at UCF
Sept. 16 UCLA
Sept. 23 Southern Illinois
Sept. 30 at Georgia State
Oct. 6 at Connecticut (ESPN)
Oct. 14 Navy
Oct. 19 at Houston (ESPN)
Oct. 27 Tulane (CBSSN)
Nov. 3 at Tulsa (ESPN/ESPN2)
Nov. 18 SMU
Nov. 25 East Carolina
The Tigers will open Spring Practice March 16th, with the Blue Gray Spring Game Friday Night Stripes coming up about a month later in April at the Liberty Bowl.
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