ADRIAN, Mich.--Adrian College director of athletics Mike Duffy has announced the Bulldogs' football schedule for 2016, which includes five home games and a trip to the West Coast to open the season.
The Bulldogs will kick off their 112th season on Sep. 3 when they travel to the Pacific Northwest to play Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore., at Hanson Stadium. The Boxers of the Northwest Conference finished 6-4 overall and 4-3 in the NWC in 2015. Pacific handed Adrian a 20-10 loss during the schools' first meeting here in 2013.
Adrian will be idle before its next game on Sep. 17 at Benedictine University in Lisle, Ill. The Bulldogs hold a 3-0 series lead, including a 36-7 Homecoming win last Sep. 19 in the schools' first meeting since 1997. The Eagles are coming off a 7-3 season, including a 5-1 mark in the Northern Athletic Collegiate Conference.
The Bulldogs will make their home debut the following Saturday against Wisconsin-Stevens Point for a Homecoming contest at beautiful 3,000-seat Docking Stadium, closing the month of September. This will be the first meeting ever between the Bulldogs and Pointers, and just the second game against a team from the powerful Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. (Adrian lost at six-time national champion UW-Whitewater 35-0 in 2010.) Stevens Point went 5-5 overall and 3-4 in the WIAC last season.
The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association slate gets under way for Adrian on Oct. 1 when the Bulldogs travel to defending MIAA champion and 2015 NCAA Division III Football Championship participant Albion. The Britons (9-2, 5-1) hold a 55-29-1 all-time series advantage, including a close 30-25 win in Albion last October.
The month continues on the 8th when Adrian entertains Lakeland out of the NACC to begin a three-game homestand. The Muskies (8-3) won the conference title and made an appearance in the NCAA playoffs. This will be the schools' first-ever meeting.
With the non-conference docket wrapped up, Adrian shifts its focus to MIAA play and Hope College (2-8, 0-6) on Oct. 15 for its first league contest at home. The Flying Dutchmen enjoy a 48-25-1 lead, but the Bulldogs have held the upper hand of late in the all-time series by winning four straight and seven of the last eight meetings.
The long homestand concludes on Oct. 22 as Kalamazoo (3-7, 1-5 MIAA) invades Docking Stadium for Family Weekend. The Bulldogs are 41-35-1 all-time against the Hornets, including a 20-14 win last Nov. 7.
October winds up on the 29th when Adrian travels to Angola, Ind., for a match-up with Trine, which fashioned a 6-4 overall mark and 4-2 MIAA record last fall. The Bulldogs have won five in a row over the Thunder to improve to 9-4 in the series, including 38-24 on Senior Day 2015 to knock Trine from a share of the MIAA title.
The Bulldogs will have its 2016 Senior Day on Nov. 5 versus Olivet (9-1), which shared the MIAA crown with Albion on identical 5-1 conference records. The Comets defeated Adrian 35-7 back on Oct. 3, but still lag far behind in the all-time series, 46-25-1.
Adrian will end the regular season on the road Nov. 12 at Alma. The Bulldogs throttled the Scots 50 to 14 on Oct. 10, 2015, extending their series winning streak to nine. Alma, which ended up 5-5 last fall and 2-4 in the MIAA, owns a 47-29-1 all-time lead over Adrian.
The Bulldogs, who have compiled the fourth-best record among all Michigan-based schools and the best in the state among the Division III ranks since 2012, return a bevy of starters on both sides of the ball and expect a talented recruiting class coming in next August.