AMES – If all goes as planned, Jack Trice Stadium will host Iowa State’s first four games of the upcoming football season.
ISU announced Tuesday that it has added Ball State as a 12th game to its schedule. The Cardinals will make a Sept. 12 trip to Ames, replacing the Cy-Hawk game that was canceled when the Big Ten went to a conference-only football schedule.
Ball State had that week open after its games against Indiana and Michigan were canceled. The Cardinals were originally set to play Michigan on Sept. 12.
Elsewhere in the state, the University of Northern Iowa is still looking for a replacement after its game with the Iowa was canceled. The Panthers are currently scheduled to play at Idaho State on Sept. 12 and have the weekend of Sept. 5 open.
In addition to playing their first four games at home, eight of Iowa State’s 12 overall games will take place in Jack Trice Stadium. The first road game will be Oct. 3 at Kansas.
“I am excited for our players and fans to have eight opportunities to play in Jack Trice Stadium this fall,” Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard said, in a Tuesday school release. “Playing our first four games and six of the opening eight at home should give our team a significant competitive advantage.”
Pollard noted that Coach Matt Campbell’s teams have won nearly 80% of their home games the last two seasons. ISU has defeated a ranked team in each of the last three seasons in Jack Trice Stadium.
“There’s no question our guys like to play in Jack Trice Stadium as we’ve won 11 of the last 14 games there,” Pollard added. “We remain hopeful that we can host fans this season and the Ball State game will be a bonus for those with season tickets. We are not adjusting ticket prices despite adding another home game.”
Pollard noted the challenges of preparing a team to play in the COVID-19 environment.
“As we make every effort to keep our staff and players healthy in these challenging COVID-19-related times, it should be an advantage to avoid team travel the first month of the season,” Pollard said.
Iowa State and Ball State have played just once previously on the gridiron, a 38-0 Cyclone victory in 1998.
The Cyclone home schedule for this fall includes South Dakota (Sept. 5), Ball State (Sept. 12), UNLV (Sept. 19), Texas Tech (Sept. 26), Oklahoma (Oct. 17), Kansas State (Oct. 29), Baylor (Nov. 14) and West Virginia (Nov. 27).