The Southwest Minnesota State football team opens its 12-game 2012 season with a home game against Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference powerhouse Minnesota-Duluth, the team announced on Friday.
With the addition of Minot State and the University of Sioux Falls expanding the NSIC to 16 teams, the Mustangs will play in 11 conference games for the first time in school history.
On Aug. 30 at Mattke Field at the Regional Event Center, SMSU will host Minnesota-Duluth, which won a share of the NSIC title and qualified for the NCAA tournament last year.
The Mustangs host Mary on Sept. 15 as part of the Ag Bowl, and Wayne State will be the visitor in Marshall for homecoming on Oct. 6. SMSU will also host Upper Iowa (Oct. 20), Concordia-St. Paul (Nov. 3) and Augustana (Nov. 10).
The Mustangs' first road game will be on Sept. 8 in Aberdeen, S.D., against Northern State. SMSU also has road matchups with Minnesota-Crookston (Sept. 22), Sioux Falls (Sept. 29), Minnesota State-Mankato (Oct. 13) and Winona State (Oct. 27).
In 2011, SMSU went 3-7 in the NSIC, 3-8 overall.
SMSU 2012 Schedule (home games in BOLD)
Aug. 30: vs. Minn.-Duluth, 6 p.m.
Sept. 8: at Northern State (Aberdeen, S.D.), 2:30 p.m.
Sept. 15: vs. Mary (Ag Bowl), TBA
Sept. 22: at Minn.-Crookston, 1 p.m.
Sept. 29: at Sioux Falls, 6 p.m.
Oct. 6: vs. Wayne State (Homecoming), 5 p.m.
Oct. 13: at MSU-Mankato, 2 p.m.
Oct. 20: vs. Upper Iowa, 5 p.m.
Oct. 27: at Winona State, 4:30 p.m.
Nov. 3: vs. Concordia-St. Paul, 1 p.m.
Nov. 10: vs. Augustana, 1 p.m.