|Middle Tennessee and Purdue have agreed to open the 2011 football season against each other on Sept. 3 at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind. The game will be the first-ever meeting between the Boilermakers and the Blue Raiders.
It will mark the fourth game all-time for Middle Tennessee against the Big Ten Conference. The Blue Raiders hosted Minnesota in the season opener this year and faced Illinois on the road in 1998 and 2000.
The Blue Raiders will receive a guarantee of $850,000 for the game.
“Purdue is a tradition-laden Big Ten program which makes for an enjoyable experience for our fans to begin the 2011 season,” said Director of Athletics Chris Massaro. “The large guarantee was very attractive and the fact we will be playing another nationally televised game is extremely beneficial to our program. It was also a pleasure working with Morgan Burke and his staff.”
The Blue Raiders’ non-conference schedule is now complete with home games against Georgia Tech and Memphis, and road contests at Purdue and Tennessee. The complete schedule will not be made available until March 2011.
"We were put into a very tough spot trying to fill a hole in our schedule barely 10 months away from the opening of the 2011 football season,” Purdue athletics director Morgan Burke said. “Our staff came together and did an outstanding job of finding us a quality opponent without having to disrupt any other school's schedule. My counterpart at Middle Tennessee, Chris Massaro, has been great to work with throughout this process, and we look forward to seeing the Blue Raiders in Ross-Ade Stadium.”
The Blue Raiders (5-6, 4-3 Sun Belt) will face Florida International in Miami Saturday to close out the regular season, while Purdue completed its 2010 campaign with an overtime loss to Indiana to finish 4-8.