WKU Football releases 2023 schedule

The+Hilltoppers+run+onto+Feix+Field+ahead+of+their+Homecoming+matchup+with+UNT+on+Saturday%2C+Oct.+29%2C+2022.+WKU+lost+40-13.

Tucker Covey

The Hilltoppers run onto Feix Field ahead of their Homecoming matchup with UNT on Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022. WKU lost 40-13.

Piper McCoun

The schedule for the WKU Football 2023 season has arrived. Over half of the schedule consists of Conference-USA opponents. 

The Hilltoppers will open the season on Sept. 2 at home against South Florida, who WKU beat 45-35 in 2015, their last matchup against the Bulls. WKU will follow the season opener with another matchup in Bowling Green against Houston Christian, a program which was founded in 2013 and competes in the Southland Conference. 

The Hilltoppers’ week three matchup is objectively their toughest opponent of the season. WKU will travel to Columbus, Ohio to play the Ohio State Buckeyes, consistently one of the most dominant programs in college football.

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The Buckeyes concluded their 2022 season with a 42-41 loss to University of Georgia in the College Football Playoff Semi Final. The same Georgia team would advance to claim their second straight national championship title for the 2022 season. 

WKU will hit the road again during week four to play Troy University, who beat the Hilltoppers 34-27 in the 2022 season. However, don’t count WKU out of this game. WKU was competitive in all facets during their last matchup against the Trojans, totaling 470 total offensive yards and 29 first downs with a 50 percent conversion rate on third downs. Defensive efforts combined with contributors to offensive yards like quarterback Austin Reed will contribute to Hilltopper play away from home. 

The “100 Miles of Hate” rivalry will continue to play out when Middle Tennessee travels to Bowling Green to play WKU to open conference play. WKU finished the 2022 season third in the Conference USA standings, one spot above the Blue Raiders.

The Hilltoppers claimed victory over MTSU 35-17 in the 2022 season, moving their historical record with the Blue Raiders to 36-35-1. This will be an important game regarding the tone that will be set by WKU for the conference games to follow. 

The Hilltoppers will then travel to Ruston, Louisiana to face Louisiana Tech, which lost to the Hilltoppers 30-15 in their last matchup in 2018. After their bye week, WKU will hit the road to play Jacksonville State, which was a previous member of the ASUN conference and will transition all sports to C-USA this summer. 

WKU will return to Bowling Green on Oct. 24 for another Tuesday night matchup against Liberty, which claimed a 30-24 victory over the Hilltoppers in the 2020 season. WKU will then get over a week of practice before they travel to El Paso, Texas to face UTEP. The next two games will take place in Bowling Green against New Mexico State and Sam Houston State, which will both join C-USA this summer. 

The last game of the season before tournament play will take place on Nov. 25 in Miami, Florida to play FIU, who finished ninth out of 11 teams in the C-USA standings in the 2022 season. 

New competition moving into C-USA and an increased number of home games will likely generate an excited Hilltopper fanbase going into the 2023 football season. All WKU students have the opportunity to get into home games free of charge with their student ID.