MILWAUKEE – The Wisconsin Lutheran College football team has announced its 2012 football schedule, according to 13th-year head coach Dennis Miller. The slate is highlighted by two games against Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) opponents, a league where the Warriors were a member from 2002-2007.
"We are eagerly looking forward to the 2012 season with great anticipation," says Miller. "Our non-conference schedule shapes up to be our most challenging. We continue our series with Ripon and add two new opponents this year. The new opponents, Olivet and Adrian, we have some familiarity with from our earlier affiliation with the MIAA."
For the third consecutive year, WLC (6-4, 5-2 NAC) will kick off its season against Ripon (6-4, 5-4 MWC). The Warriors travel to Ingalls Field to face the Red Hawks September 1 at 1 p.m. and look to avenge last season's loss.
The next two Saturday's has Wisconsin Lutheran hosting a pair of MIAA foes, beginning with a September 8 home-opening contest against Olivet (1-9, 1-5 MIAA) at 1 p.m.
September 15 marks the beginning of the MIAA-NAC "Challenge Series" as seven NAC members will be hosting seven MIAA members. The matchups are determined by the previous year's conference standings in both leagues. The top team from the NAC battles the top team for the MIAA and so on.
WLC hosts Adrian (8-2, 4-2 MIAA) in its MIAA-NAC "Challenge Series" game. Kick-off between the Warriors and Bulldogs is set for 1 p.m. at Raabe Stadium.
Following its bye week September 22, WLC begins its conference slate September 29 when it hosts Lakeland (4-6, 4-3 NAC) in its annual Homecoming game. The Warriors fell by a final of 20-7 to the Muskies last season, but have an impressive all-time Homecoming record of 8-4, having won five straight. Last season, Wisconsin Lutheran blanked Maranatha 61-0 on Homecoming.
Wisconsin Lutheran hits the road for its next two league games, beginning with an October 6 trip to Concordia Stadium in River Forest, Ill. for matchup with last year's NAC Co-Champion, Concordia Chicago (8-2, 6-1 NAC). Last season, the Cougars defeated WLC, 29-17.
The following weekend, WLC travels to Vago Field in Aurora, Ill. for a 1 p.m. kickoff against the Aurora Spartans (3-7, 2-5 NAC). Last season, WLC received a school-record 21 tackles from Eric Zeitler to defeat Aurora, 27-14.
The Warriors welcome defending NAC Co-Champion Benedictine (7-4, 6-1 NAC) to Raabe Stadium October 20 when they host the Eagles at 1 p.m. The Warriors defeated Benedictine in its final regular season game last year to snap BenU's 16-game conference winning streak.
Wisconsin Lutheran is back on the road October 27 when it faces the Maranatha Crusaders (3-7, 1-6 NAC). Following that game will be a November 3 home finale against Rockford (0-10, 0-7 NAC). The Senior Day game against the Regents is set for 1 p.m. at Raabe Stadium.
WLC concludes its 2012 regular season slate looking for its third consecutive Lutheran Bowl victory as the Warriors head to Century Stadium in Mequon, Wis. for a November 10 contest against Concordia Wisconsin (4-6, 4-3 NAC). Last season, the Warriors tied the Lutheran Bowl series at 2-2 with a 35-28 win over the Falcons.
"The conference schedule will again be a battle with each school as the NAC rivalries have continued to grow and we expect a competitive and exciting schedule from our first to last conference game".
The NAC champion becomes the conference's automatic qualifier in the 2012 NCAA Division III Football Championship.