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Ball State adds Iowa State to 2020 football schedule

Matt Campbell will play an old MAC West foe once again, this time from his new digs in Ames.

NCAA Football: Kansas at Iowa State Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

After losing pay games at both Indiana and Michigan due to the Big Ten Conference’s move to a conference-only schedule, Ball State has found at least one replacement game opponent for the 2020 season: Iowa State.

“We are thrilled to secure a Power 5 opponent for our fall schedule in these uncertain times,” head football coach Mike Neu said, per press release. “It will be a terrific experience for our team.”

While it’s unclear whether this will be a buy game, what is clear is that Ball State is currently scheduled to play Iowa State on Saturday, Sept. 12 at Jack Trice Stadium, per press release.

The last match-up between the two programs was in 1998, when Iowa State stomped Ball State by a final score of 38-0.

Ball State is now currently scheduled to play 10 games in the 2020 football season after the previously announced cancellations by the Big Ten and the Colonial Athletic Association (of which previously scheduled FCS foe Maine is a member.) They will be playing Iowa State and Wyoming in their non-conference, followed by their conference slate.

Iowa State isn’t coming off the best of seasons. In 2019, the Cyclones went 7-6 overall, in a season tipped off by a 29-26 triple overtime scrap with Northern Iowa, and finished with a 33-9 loss to Notre Dame in the Camping World Bowl. But Matt Campbell, who will enter his fifth season in Ames in 2020, has at least made Iowa State a great spoiler candidate in the Big 12 thus far.

Campbell is 2-2 against the Cardinals in his coaching career, facing them four times as head coach of the Toledo Rockets.

The Iowa State game will replace Ball State’s 2020 opener, which was originally scheduled to be against FCS opponent Maine. It also replaces the famous “Cy-Hawk” Rivalry game between Iowa and Iowa State for the Cyclones, which will make 2020 the first season since 1977 that the trophy will not be played for.