After posting consecutive .500 seasons for only the second time in 30 years, the Bethany College football program has released its 2012 schedule, which will feature two first-time opponents and a full slate against Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) teams.
While the start times for some of the road games are still to be determined, the kickoffs are set for Bethany's home contests. The Homecoming game will have its traditional 2 p.m. kickoff, while the other four games are slated to start at 1 p.m.
The year begins with a home game for the Bison, as they will host Centre (Ky.) College on Sept. 1 at 1 p.m. The Colonels, based out of Danville, Ky., compete in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC). Centre finished the 2011 season with a 9-2 mark and after placing second in the SCAC regular season standings, earned an at-large bid to the NCAA playoffs where they defeated Hampden-Sydney 51-41 in the opening round before dropping a 30-10 contest to Mount Union in the second round.
Following a week off, Bethany will travel to Randolph-Macon (Va.) College Sept. 15. The Yellow Jackets came in at 8-2 and 4-2 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) in 2011. Having reached the NCAA playoffs as recently as 2008, Randolph-Macon has six consecutive winning seasons under its belt.
The Bison will close out September with a pair of road games to begin PAC play. On Sept. 22, BC will travel to Grove City and that will be followed by a road match-up at long-time rival Washington & Jefferson Sept. 29.
October will bring the Green and White home for a pair of league contests. On Oct. 6th, Bethany will take on Geneva for Homecoming at 2 p.m. and the following week will pit BC against Waynesburg at Bison Stadium. The month will conclude with two road trips to northern conference schools, first with a date at Westminster Oct. 20 and then a game at Thiel Oct. 27.
Bethany will not have to leave its home field for a regular season game in the month of November. On Nov. 3rd, four-time defending PAC champion Thomas More pays a visit to Bison Stadium. The final regular season game will be a home match-up with Saint Vincent on Nov. 10th.
"We're excited about the 2012 schedule," said Bison head coach Tim Weaver, who will be in his seventh year at the helm in 2012. "The opening non-conference games are against the best competition we've seen outside the PAC since our staff took over. We want to measure ourselves against the best teams in the region, and playing Centre and Randolph Macon should prepare us very well for conference play.
"Once the PAC schedule starts, we expect another very balanced year in the league, and we think our level of talent and experience returning will put us in a position to compete at a very high level every week," concluded Weaver.