EAST GREENSBORO A battle of national champions highlights the North Carolina A&T football team's 2020 schedule.
N.C. A&T has released its 2020 schedule as they attempt to win their fourth straight Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) title and their sixth in the last seven years.
Before conference play begins in 2020, the Aggies will have three intriguing non-conference conference games starting with a matchup against Division II program Shaw University on Sept. 5 at BB&T Stadium. After playing the Bears, the Aggies will face the Liberty Flames, a Division I-FBS institution. The Aggies had their three-year streak of beating an FBS school snapped last season after losing to Duke.
On Sept. 19, the Aggies will play in Fargo, N.D. against North Dakota State. NDSU has won the last three NCAA Division I-FCS national championships while the Aggies have won the last three HBCU national championships. N.C. A&T has finished nationally-ranked the past five years while the Bison are routinely ranked the No. 1 team on the FCS level.
"We always want to see where we measure up with the very best," said N.C. A&T coach Sam Washington, who will enter the 2020 season with a 19-5 record, two MEAC championships and two HBCU national championships.
"If you're going to say you're one of the best FCS programs in the country, you have to continually go out and prove it," Washington continued. "There is no question it is a challenging schedule, but we would not have it any other way. We want to be regarded as an elite program."
Conference play begins Sept. 26 as the Aggies travel to Dover, Del., to face Delaware State. N.C. A&T returns home the following week to take on the Norfolk State Spartans. After taking a week off, the Aggies return to BB&T Stadium on Oct. 17 to face the Florida A&M Rattlers.
The Aggies will make their first trip to Washington, D.C., in six years when they face the Howard Bison at Greene Stadium on Oct. 24.
S.C. State will come to BB&T Stadium for the Greatest Homecoming On Earth on Halloween. Morgan State, who has upset the Aggies two straight seasons, will return to BB&T Stadium on Nov. 7 for the Aggies final home game of the season.
N.C. A&T ends the regular season the road at Bethune-Cookman (Nov. 14) and at N.C. Central (Nov. 21). The Aggies hope the end of the regular season will result in another Celebration Bowl appearance. N.C. A&T has played in four of the first five Celebration Bowls winning all four.
As a result of their four Celebration Bowl victories, the Aggies have won the HBCU national title four times in the past five years including last season's 64-44 Celebration Bowl win over Alcorn State at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
"We have the best fans in the world, and they love going to Atlanta in December for the Celebration Bowl," said Washington. "What we always have to remind people is that we have to win to get there. It gets harder every season because we are the hunted."
2020 North Carolina A&T Football Schedule
|Sat.||Sept. 5||Shaw||BB&T Stadium||A&T leads,17-2-1|
|Sat.||Sept. 12||at Liberty||Lynchburg, Va.||A&T leads, 2-1|
|Sat.||Sept. 19||at North Dakota State||Fargo, N.D.||First Meeting|
|Sat.||Sept. 26||Delaware State||Dover, Del.||A&T leads, 25-22-1|
|Sat.||Oct. 3||Norfolk State||BB&T Stadium||A&T leads, 33-11|
|Sat.||Oct. 17||Florida A&M||BB&T Stadium||FAMU leads, 46-19-3|
|Sat.||Oct. 24||at Howard||Washington, D.C.||A&T leads, 28-18-2|
|Sat.||Oct. 31||S.C. State (Homecoming)||BB&T Stadium||SCSU leads, 31-22-2|
|Sat.||Nov. 7||Morgan State||BB&T Stadium||Morgan leads, 44-38-3|
|Sat.||Nov. 14||at Bethune-Cookman||Daytona Beach, Fla.||B-CU leads, 22-19|
|Sat.||Nov. 21||N.C. Central||Durham, N.C.||A&T leads, 52-34-5|