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New DSU-UD football contract brings series to Dover

Rachel Sawicki
Delaware Public Media

The University of Delaware and Delaware State Universty will continue to face-off on the gridiron over the next decade – with a twist.

The two schools inked a deal that will have the Blue Hen and Hornet football teams clash for six straight years starting with the 2024 season.

And for the first time, DSU will get host some of the games.  The Hens will make their first ever visit to Dover in 2024, and play again there in 2025.  The games in 2026 through 2029 will be in Newark.  The venue for the 2030 game will be decided by the results of the first 5 encounters.

“It’s exciting for each school and the state that our football series will continue into the next decade and beyond,” said Delaware State head coach Rod Milstead in a statement. “I’m also pleased that at least two of the games are scheduled to be played in Dover, allowing fans in central and southern Delaware a better opportunity to attend.” 

"We are looking forward to this series with Delaware State and to celebrate our state’s two major universities. This agreement will create a lot of excitement and enthusiasm for the fans of both universities,” Delaware head coach Danny Rocco said in his own statement.

The two teams had never played before meeting in a first round NCAA playoff game in 2007, and have faced-off just 7 times since.  UD has won all eight meetings, the most recent a 22-3 win in 2017.

The two teams are slated to play this fall and again in 2020 as part of a previous contract.

Delaware State was 3-8 last season.  UD went 7-5 and returned to the NCAA playoffs for the first time since 2010 before losing in the opening round to James Madison.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
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