Here’s who BYU football will open the 2023 season against, after the Tennessee cancellation
The Cougars made a pair of shifts to their schedule next year, the program’s first season in the Big 12 Conference
Two months ago, Tennessee canceled its scheduled 2023 game against BYU.
Now, there’s someone to fill that schedule void.
BYU announced the Cougars will instead host Sam Houston State on Sept. 2, 2023, to start that season, the program’s first year as a member of the Big 12 Conference.
In addition, the school announced BYU will face Southern Utah in 2025 and move its scheduled 2023 game against the Thunderbirds up from Nov. 18 to Sept. 9. Both games will be played in Provo.
That gives BYU two home games at LaVell Edwards Stadium to start the 2023 season before the Cougars’ third scheduled nonconference opponent, when they play at Arkansas on Sept. 16.
The Cougars are expected to play a nine-game conference schedule in the Big 12.
Sam Houston is a program in flux, too. The Bearkats, who won the Football Championship Subdivision championship in spring 2021, will be joining a Football Bowl Subdivision conference, Conference USA, in 2023.
Tennessee’s game against BYU in 2023 was scheduled to be played in Provo, leaving the Cougars searching to add another home game to their slate.
By canceling the contracted game, Tennessee was forced to pay BYU $2 million, according to several reports. The Volunteers instead will play Virginia in a home game in 2023.
BYU and SUU have played once before, when the Cougars beat the Thunderbirds 37-7 in 2016.