By Edythe Bradley
The Albany State University Golden Rams promise an upcoming season full of action and excitement as the 2011 tentative football schedule is released. Highlighting the 2011 schedule is the addition of a classic game and two non-conference games, including a matchup with a 2010 playoff opponent, ASU athletic administrators announced Thursday afternoon. The schedule also features the start of East/West Divisional play in the SIAC, with Albany State playing seven conference games in 2011.
“We are excited to unveil the Golden Rams’ 2011 schedule,” ASU Interim Athletics Director Richard Williams said. “We have done a tremendous job of putting together a schedule that is challenging for our team and one that will offer our fans a ton of excitement and great gridiron action.”
Williams said Albany State will add another game to complete the 10-game schedule.
“The SIAC has mandated that all schools must play a 10-game schedule to be eligible for the SIAC championship game in November, so we are seeking another opponent,” Williams said. “We have had a tough time completing our schedule this season. We have talked with several teams that are interested in the challenge of playing the Golden Rams, but most have schedule conflicts.”
The defending SBN Black College National Champions will kick off the season at home against Savannah State University Tigers in the J.W. Holley Memorial Game on Sept. 3 at the Albany State University Coliseum. A member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, Savannah State is the only Division I opponent on the 2011 schedule. The Golden Rams beat the Tigers 28-14 in the Rumble in the Swamp Classic in Waycross, Ga. last season. The team played in the Music City Classic in Macon, Ga. from 1999 until 2004.
The defending SIAC champions will welcome South Atlantic Conference champions, the Wingate University Bulldogs, back to ASU Coliseum on Sept. 10 for the second meeting of the teams. The Golden Rams defeated the Bulldogs 30-28 in the second round of the NCAA Division II Football Playoffs last season.
The Rams will open SIAC play against the Miles College Golden Bears on Sept. 24 at Alumni Field in Fairfield, Ala. The Miles game is the first of three West Division crossover games.
The Golden Rams will make their debut in the 28th Annual Circle City Classic in Indianapolis, Ind. on Oct. 1, and take on West Division rival, the Kentucky State University Thorobreds at Lucas Oil Stadium. Recognized as one of the most spectacular events in black college football, the Circle City Classic is a joint collaboration between Indiana Black Expo. Inc. and the Indiana Sports Corporation and will feature a week of events including a parade, recruitment fairs, a golf tournament and concert.
The Rams will face another West Division foe when they travel to Jackson, Tenn. to play the Lane College Dragons on Oct. 8. The remainder of the 2011 schedule includes East Division opponents. The Rams will return home to face the Morehouse College Maroon Tigers on Oct. 15 and play the Clark Atlanta University Panthers in Atlanta on Oct. 22. The Golden Rams will celebrate Homecoming 2011 against the Benedict College Tigers on Oct. 29.
Two of the biggest SIAC rivals, Albany State and Fort Valley State University will close their regular seasons in the 22nd Annual Fountain City Classic on Nov. 5 at the A.J. McClung Memorial Stadium in Columbus, Ga. The Golden Rams defeated the Wildcats 12-7 in the 2010 FCC to claim the SIAC title. The FCC is touted as one of the biggest and best HBCU football classics.
The winners of the East and West divisions will play for the 2011 SIAC championship title on Nov. 12 at McClung Memorial Stadium in Columbus, Ga.
Albany State will make another announcement as the team finalizes the 2011 schedule, Williams said. Times of games and ticket information will also be announced.
2011 Golden Rams Football Schedule
Date Opponent Site Time
9/3 Savannah State # Albany, GA TBA
9/10 Wingate Univ. Albany, GA TBA
9/24 Miles College * Fairfield, AL 6:00 p.m. ^
10/01 Kentucky State Univ. * Indianapolis, IN TBA
10/8 Lane College * Jackson, TN TBA
10/15 Morehouse College * Albany, GA TBA
10/22 Clark Atlanta Univ. * Atlanta, GA TBA
10/29 Benedict College * ## Albany, GA 2:00 p.m.
11/5 Fort Valley State Univ. * ### Columbus, GA 2:00 p.m.
* – SIAC Games ^ CST
# – Dr. Joseph Winthrop Holley Game
## – Homecoming 2011
### – 22nd Annual Fountain City Classic
Mike White, Head Coach
Assistant Coaches: Rickey Alexander, Kenyan Conner, Dan Land, Uyl Joyner, Anthony Kelly, William Chunn
Bokowski Daniels, Christopher Henderson, Demetrie McCray, Hardrick Porchia