The American Athletic Conference Releases The 2018 Football Schedule
Feb. 13, 2018
ANNAPOLIS, Md.--The 2018 Navy football schedule released today by the American Athletic Conference features five home games at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, a neutral site game against Notre Dame in San Diego as well as the annual Army-Navy Game presented by USAA in Philadelphia, which is the greatest rivalry in all of sports.
The Mids will play 13 regular-season games in 2018, including seven games against teams that played in a bowl game last fall and four teams that won at least 10 games. The eight games away from Annapolis will be played in some of the most attractive locales in the country both from a recruiting standpoint and for Navy fans to visit as the Mids will be playing in Hawai’i, Dallas, San Diego, Orlando and New Orleans.
Navy will travel a total of 26,496 miles in 2018, which will be the second most in the FBS and the most by a team located in the continental United States. Only Hawai’i (38,578 miles) will travel more.
“This is obviously a very difficult schedule when you look at the quality of the opposition, the travel and where some of these games fall in the schedule,” said Navy head coach Ken Niumatalolo. “I really like this team. Our entire program has to be totally committed to prepare for this very challenging schedule.”
Navy will kick off the 2018 schedule on Sept. 1 when the Mids travel to Hawai’i to take on the Warriors in a homecoming for Navy’s head coach. Niumatalolo, who hails from the North Shore of Oahu in the town of Laie’, will bring his Navy team to the Island for the second time in his tenure. The Mids lost at Hawai’i, 24-17, in 2009. Niumatalolo would avenge that loss in 2013 when Hawai’i came to Annapolis and lost to Navy, 42-28. Hawai’i went 3-9 in 2017.
The Mids will return home the following week to face defending American Athletic Conference West Division Champion Memphis on Saturday, Sept. 8 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in the conference opener for both teams. Memphis, which finished 10-3 last year including a 62-55 double-overtime loss to UCF in the AAC Championship Game, beat Navy last year, 30-27, in a game that saw Navy turn the ball over five times.
Navy will remain home the following week as the Mids take on defending Patriot League Champion Lehigh on Saturday, Sept. 15. Lehigh went 5-1 in the Patriot League last year and lost to Stony Brook in the first round of the FCS Tournament.
Navy will head to Dallas on Saturday, Sept. 22 to take on the SMU Mustangs and new head coach Sonny Dykes. Navy beat SMU to become bowl eligible last year, 43-40, in Annapolis. SMU finished 7-6 in 2017.
After a bye week, the Mids head to Colorado Springs on Saturday, Oct. 6 to take on the Air Force Falcons in the first game of the round-robin series between Army, Navy and Air Force as the three teams battle for the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy. Navy rallied to beat Air Force last year, 48-45, on a touchdown pass from Zach Abey to Tyler Carmona with 15 seconds left. Air Force finished 5-7 last year.
Navy will return home to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium for home conference games against Temple (Oct. 13) and Houston (Oct. 20). The Houston game is also designated as Navy’s Homecoming. Temple finished 7-6 last year, including a 34-26 victory over Navy, while Houston finished 7-5, including a 24-14 victory over Navy. Temple has beaten Navy three out of the last four games, including the last two played in Annapolis.
Navy will close the year by playing five of its final six games away from Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Included in those five is a neutral site home game vs. Notre Dame at SDCCU Stadium in San Diego on Oct. 27 and the Army game on Saturday, Dec. 8 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.
The Notre Dame game will mark Navy’s first trip to San Diego since 2014 when the Mids knocked off San Diego State, 17-16, in the Poinsettia Bowl and Navy’s first trip to San Diego for a regular-season game since the opener in 1997 when the Mids lost to the Aztecs, 45-31. It will be Notre Dame’s first-ever trip to San Diego. Notre Dame finished 10-3 in 2017, including a hard-fought 24-17 victory over Navy in South Bend.
Navy will play at Cincinnati on Saturday, Nov. 3. The Bearcats went 4-8 last year, including a 42-32 loss to Navy in Annapolis. It will be Navy’s first trip to Nippert Stadium.
Navy’s third consecutive game away from home will come on Veterans Day Weekend when the Mids travel to Orlando to take on the UCF Knights on Saturday, Nov. 10. UCF is coming off a 13-0 season that included a 34-27 victory over Auburn in the Peach Bowl and a 31-21 win over Navy in Annapolis. This will mark Navy’s first trip to Orlando since 2000, when the Mids played host to Notre Dame there and Navy’s first trip to Spectrum Stadium, which is the home of the Knights.
Navy will return home on Saturday, Nov. 17 to face Tulsa on Senior Day. Navy has won 15 consecutive games on Senior Day. Tulsa finished 2-10 in 2017, including a 31-21 loss to Navy.
Navy will head to the Big Easy on Thanksgiving weekend to take on Tulane in New Orleans on Saturday, Nov. 24. Tulane went 5-7 last year, including a 23-21 loss to Navy.
The American Athletic Conference Championship Game will be played on Saturday, Dec. 1 at the home of the division champ with the best conference record. UCF defeated Memphis in last year’s championship game in Orlando.
The annual Army-Navy Game presented by USAA will take place the week after the AAC Championship Game on Saturday, Dec. 8 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.
Season tickets are on sale now for the 2018 season by visiting https://goo.gl/ymh2tk
or calling 1-800-US4-NAVY. Tickets start at only $150 for general admission and $225 for reserved seats. By purchasing your season tickets now, you will secure the right the purchase tickets for the 2018 Army-Navy game.
Navy is 44-11 (.800) at home under Ken Niumatalolo, including a 29-5 (.853) mark over the last five seasons.
2018 Navy Football Schedule
Saturday, Sept. 1 at Hawai’i
Sept. Sept. 8 vs. Memphis*
Saturday, Sept. 15 vs. Lehigh
Saturday, Sept. 22 at SMU*
Saturday, Oct. 6 at Air Force
Saturday, Oct. 13 vs. Temple*
Saturday, Oct. 20 vs. Houston* (Homecoming)
Saturday, Oct. 27 vs. Notre Dame#
Saturday, Nov. 3 at Cincinnati*
Saturday, Nov. 10 at UCF*
Saturday, Nov. 17 vs. Tulsa*
Saturday, Nov. 24 at Tulane*
Saturday, Dec. 1 vs. AAC Championship Game
Saturday, Dec. 8 vs. Army@
*AAC Conference Game
@Lincoln Financial Field