OVC and Southland Conference announce football scheduling alliance

 OVC and Southland Conference announce football scheduling alliance

The Ohio Valley Conference has filed lawsuits against Eastern Kentucky University and Jacksonville State University….

The OVC and Southland Conference have announced plans for a football scheduling alliance between the two NCAA Division I FCS leagues in the 2022 and 2023 seasons.

The planned collaboration will see institutions from each conference fill available non-conference dates on schedules in the next two years with a focus toward competitive balance and reasonable travel.  In addition to providing quality Division I FCS non-conference matchups, the alliance will allow increased visibility, exposure and branding for each Conference. Both the OVC and Southland have longstanding ESPN broadcast agreements.

More specific details, including game matchups in 2022 and 2023, will be announced at a later date.

“Our Presidents, Chancellors and Athletic Directors have enthusiastically supported this alliance,” said OVC Commissioner Beth DeBauche. “We are delighted to work together to promote one another and provide a quality student-athlete experience. This partnership strengthens not only both football leagues, but the FCS overall with quality non-conference matchups. Given the changing Division I landscape, this demonstrates ways that conferences can collaborate to support one another.”

“We greatly anticipate the possibilities of a beneficial partnership with the OVC,” said Southland Commissioner Tom Burnett. “The Southland presidents and athletic directors have found this to be an exciting competitive opportunity with their OVC peers, and we all look forward to some outstanding and meaningful FCS crossover games during the next two seasons. We all appreciate the strong level of interest and cooperation between our two leagues.”

The two Conferences have combined for four FCS National Championships and more 100 playoff wins since the subdivision was formed in 1978. Additionally, the Southland has served as the host conference for the successful NCAA Division I FCS Championship Game in its home base of Frisco, Texas, since 2011.

OVC football members include Eastern Illinois University (Charleston, Ill.), Murray State University (Murray, Ky.), Southeast Missouri State University (Cape Girardeau, Mo.), Tennessee State University (Nashville, Tenn.), Tennessee Technological University (Cookeville, Tenn.), and the University of Tennessee at Martin (Martin, Tenn.).

Southland football members include Houston Baptist University (Houston, Texas), University of the Incarnate Word (San Antonio, Texas), McNeese State University (Lake Charles, La.), Nicholls State University (Thibodaux, La.), Northwestern State University (Natchitoches, La.), Southeastern Louisiana University (Hammond, La.), and Texas A&M University-Commerce (Commerce, Texas).