Greeley, CO (SportsNetwork.com) - Northern Colorado football will open the 2014 season at UNLV and play five home games as part of an 11-game schedule announced on Thursday.
The Bears, coming off a 1-11 season and last-place finish in the Big Sky Conference, will head to Las Vegas for its season opener on Sept. 6. UNLV, which plays in the Mountain West Conference, won the only previous meeting between the two programs, 35-31 in 1979.
Coach Earnest Collins Jr.'s club will play its home opener against Houston Baptist on Sept. 13 before going to Northern Iowa on Sept. 20 for its third and final non-conference game.
"With the set-up of our schedule and the Division II rule about teams not playing before Sept. 1, we don't have that early game, so we will see where we are right away opening up at UNLV," Collins said. "We open up at home against Houston Baptist, which is a great test for us because they're a young program."
Northern Colorado's Big Sky home games will be against Northern Arizona (Oct. 4, Homecoming), Sacramento State (Oct. 11), Idaho State (Oct. 25) and North Dakota (Nov. 22).
The Bears will head to the road to face Big Sky opponents Montana (Sept. 27), Eastern Washington (Oct. 18), UC Davis (Nov. 1) and Weber State (Nov. 15).
2014 Northern Colorado Football Schedule
Sept. 6, at UNLV
Sept. 13, Houston Baptist
Sept. 20, at Northern Iowa
Sept. 27, at Montana*
Oct. 4, Northern Arizona* (Homecoming)
Oct. 11, Sacramento State*
Oct. 18, at Eastern Washington*
Oct. 25, Idaho State*
Nov. 1, at UC Davis*
Nov. 15, at Weber State*
Nov. 22, North Dakota*
* - Big Sky Conference game