Cal Poly’s football team will play its first season in the Big Sky Conference in 2012, but that schedule will not include games with Montana or Montana State, the conference’s two playoff teams in 2011.
The Mustangs’ full 2012 schedule was released Wednesday. Cal Poly will play eight games in the Big Sky Conference with its first-ever Big Sky game being a Sept. 22 home date with rival UC Davis, which is 3-0 against the Mustangs under Cal Poly head coach Tim Walsh.
The Mustangs will have five home games and six road contests.
The three nonconference games are a Sept. 1 home game against the University of San Diego (the season opener at 4:05 p.m.), a Sept. 15 game against Wyoming a Nov. 3 game against Eastern Washington. Eastern Washington is a Big Sky Conference opponent but this game will be a nonconference affair.
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Cal Poly, coming off a 6-5 season, was originally scheduled for a home nonconference game against Montana in 2012 to complete a five-year contractual agreement but that contest has been moved, perhaps to the 2015 season.
The game against San Diego is the beginning of a three-game series between the Mustangs and the Toreros. Cal Poly will host San Diego in 2012 and 2013 and visit San Diego in 2014.
“We’re obviously very excited about the 2012 schedule,” Walsh said in a news release, “because it will be our first season in the Big Sky Conference and we have an opportunity to have our first Big Sky game at home against UC Davis.
“In addition, Wyoming is one of the top teams in the Mountain West, we will play the University of San Diego for the first time in quite a while and we play Eastern Washington in their place. All are great opportunities and a huge challenge for us.”
Cal Poly’s Big Sky Conference home games will be Sept. 22 against UC Davis, Oct. 13 against Northern Colorado, Oct. 20 against Portland State — formerly coached by Walsh — and Nov. 10 against Idaho State. All are slated for 6:05 p.m. kickoffs.
Cal Poly’s Big Sky Conference road games will be Sept. 29 at North Dakota, Oct. 6 at Weber State, Oct. 27 at Sacramento State and Nov. 17 at Northern Arizona. Cal Poly and North Dakota tied for the Great West Conference title last season in the final year of the conference for football.