UPDATE, 5:00 p.m.: “Scott [Frost] and his staff were involved throughout the process as we evaluated potential opponents for a 12th game," Athletic Director Bill Moos said in a statement provided to Hail Varsity. "We notified Akron of our intent to move forward with a different opponent, and we will be continuing to have discussions with them.”
Moos said back on Sept. 5 the Huskers would “for sure” reimburse Akron's expenses. The Zips would have been owed $1.17 million under the terms of the contract had the game been played.
Say goodbye to Nebraska's bye week. The Huskers have scheduled Bethune-Cookman University, a FCS program, for Oct. 27. The matchup replaces the canceled contest between Nebraska and Akron.
“Our great fans and our football student-athletes deserve a full schedule, and we are glad to be able to provide an additional game on Oct. 27 against Bethune-Cookman,” Nebraska Athletic Director Bill Moos said. “We appreciate the patience of our fans through this process. While there may be some conflicts on what was originally a bye week, we know Memorial Stadium will be packed to watch the Huskers on a fall Saturday.
“I would like to thank Bethune-Cookman for their great cooperation as we put this agreement together. Athletic Director Lynn Thompson and Head Coach Terry Sims are excited to bring their team to Lincoln, and we look forward to their visit.”
The Huskers will pay Bethune-Cookman a guarantee of $800,000 for the game in Lincoln. The game will be a part of the Big Ten's regular television package and season ticket holders will be issued a new ticket for the Oct. 27 game. Akron tickets will not be valid for admission.
Nebraska coach Scott Frost previously expressed his preference for a makeup game on Oct. 27 versus Dec. 1. Frost wanted the Huskers to believe they have a chance to play in the Big Ten Championship game.
“Scheduling a game in December, I don’t want our kids thinking we’re not going to be in the championship game," Frost said. "We need to be in the championship game.”
Frost acknowledged that it's not ideal to play 12 straight weeks, but it's a situation he's dealth with before. Central Florida had to play 12 straight weeks in 2017 due to a canceled matchup early in that season due to a hurricane.
“It’s not ideal to play 12 straight weeks, they don’t really do that in the NFL, but if that’s the hand we’re dealt so be it,” he said. “These kids have practiced hard enough and worked hard enough they deserve to have a full slate of games. The administration’s dealing with that and we’ll play whoever they line up for us.”
Nebraska most recently faced an FCS opponent in 2014. The Huskers defeated McNeese State 31-24. Nebraska nearly lost to McNeese State in that matchup before I-back Ameer Abdullah's 58-yard touchdown run saved the day.
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