It lacks the panache of Alabama, but Georgia State has arranged a game with Houston for the 2011 season.
The team has finalized a contract with Houston, a member of Conference USA, for a Sept. 24 game in Houston. It is the only FBS (formerly Division I-A) team that the Panthers will play in 2011. The payout will be $300,000, which is about $135,000 less than Georgia State received from Alabama to play in Tuscaloosa last November.
Other confirmed opponents for Georgia State’s second season are home games with Old Dominion (Sept. 10) and South Alabama (Oct. 22) and road games with South Carolina State (Oct. 15) and Texas-San Antonio (Oct. 29)
The Panthers will likely face quarterback Case Keenum, who was granted a sixth year of eligibility last week based on medical hardship. Keenum, who was a Heisman Trophy candidate entering 2010, tore his ACL in the third game of the season. The Cougars were first in the country in passing offense, total offense and scoring offense in 2009, when Keenum finished eighth in Heisman balloting.
The Cougars finished 5-7 overall and were 4-4 in Conference USA. They play home games at 32,000-seat Robertson Stadium.
Georgia State will have all of its starters back from its inaugural team, which finished 6-5.
- Ken Sugiura