MACON, Ga. (MERCER ATHLETICS) – The Mercer University football program and head coach Bobby Lamb unveiled the 2015 schedule on Wednesday, an 11-game slate including six contests at Five Star Stadium.
The Bears, who wrapped up spring practice on Wednesday morning, are fresh off their first season as a member of Southern Conference. Mercer finished the 2014 campaign with a 6-6 overall record, developing one of the league’s top offenses and a defense that ranked among the FCS leaders in forced turnovers.
“I am excited about the 2015 schedule and the challenge it brings to our program,” said Lamb. “We look forward to hosting six games at Five Star Stadium this season and having the opportunity to play in front of our great fan base here in Middle Georgia.”
For the first time since reintroducing the program in 2013, the Bears kick-off a new season on the road. Mercer opens the 2015 campaign in Clarksville, Tenn. against Austin Peay on Labor Day weekend.
The Bears’ home opener is a week a later on Sept. 12, renewing an annual series with Stetson that dates back to the program’s inaugural season as a member of the Pioneer Football League.
A road contest at Tennessee Tech on Sept. 19 serves as the final tune-up for conference play, before the SoCon opener against Wofford on Oct. 3 at Five Star Stadium.
After their first conference road test of the year at Western Carolina on Oct. 10, the Bears host back-to-back games at Five Star Stadium against ETSU (Oct. 17) and VMI (Oct. 24). Mercer will then make the trip to Charleston, S.C. for a Halloween match-up with The Citadel.
November opens with a rematch of last season’s shootout with Chattanooga, as the defending SoCon champions travel down I-75 for a Nov. 7 showdown.
Mercer travels to Greenville, S.C. the following week, Nov. 14, as Lamb faces his alma mater at Paladin Stadium for the first time. The two teams squared off in front of a record-breaking crowd of 12,227 at Mercer a year ago in the Bears’ inaugural Southern Conference game.
Samford’s first-year head Chris Hatcher returns to his hometown on Nov. 21 for the Bears’ regular season finale at Five Star Stadium. Mercer will look to spoil the homecoming, having won its last three home finales dating back to the 1941 season.
The Bears return all 11 starters on both offense and defense for the 2015 season, including FCS All-American Chandler Curtis and All-SoCon selections Alex Avant, Wilson Heres, Alex Lakes and Tyler Ward.