Blue Devils aim for first back-to-back bowl bids
Seeking to make program history, Duke’s football team will spend plenty of time on campus over the first half of the 2013 football season.
The Blue Devils, who will attempt to qualify for back-to-back bowl games for the first time in school history, play five of their first six games at home and won’t play their first ACC game away from Wallace Wade Stadium until Oct. 19.
Duke went 6-7 this past season, qualifying for a bowl game for the first time since the 1994 season. The Blue Devils lost to Cincinnati 48-34 in the Belk Bowl, which means they’ll be looking to break a five-game losing streak when they open the season with the Bull City Gridiron Classic game with N.C. Central on Aug. 31 at Wallace Wade.
That game is the first of a flurry of home games for Duke in the first half of the season. The Blue Devils play five of their first six games at Wallace Wade Stadium, including the Sept. 14 ACC opener against Georgia Tech.
Duke welcomes league newcomer Pittsburgh to Durham the following week before playing non-conference home games with Troy (Sept. 28) and Navy (Oct. 12).
The game against Troy will serve as Duke’s homecoming contest.
Because Duke has its first of two open weeks on Oct. 5, the Blue Devils only leave campus for a game once in the season’s first seven weeks, visiting Memphis for a non-conference game on Sept. 7.
Over the last seven weeks, the Blue Devils play league road games at Virginia (Oct. 19), Virginia Tech (Oct. 26) and Wake Forest (Nov. 23) before heading to Chapel Hill on Thanksgiving weekend to play UNC in the regular-season finale.
This past season, Duke beat UNC 33-30 at Wallace Wade Stadium to regain the Victory Bell for the first time since 2003. It was Duke’s first win over UNC in Durham since 1988 and touched off a wild on-field celebration.
Anthony Boone, who is in line to take over for the graduated Sean Renfree as Duke’s starting quarterback, said Monday on Twitter that the goal is to make the atmosphere from the UNC game permanent.
“I like the schedule,” Boone said. “Now we have to keep Wallace Wade rockin (sic) like it was vs UNC.”
Because of so many home games early in the schedule, Duke wraps up its home schedule. In addition to Georgia Tech and Pittsburgh, Duke has ACC home games with N.C. State (Nov. 9) and Miami (Nov. 16).
After facing the Hurricanes on Senior Day, the Blue Devils complete their regular season at Wake and UNC.
Duke’s open weeks are the first weekends of October and November, leading into the home games with Navy and N.C. State.
Duke and N.C. State will play for the first time since 2009, when the Blue Devils won 49-28 in Raleigh to break the Wolfpack’s 11-game winning streak in the series.
N.C. State and Duke haven’t played in Durham since 2008.
2013 Duke Football Schedule
Aug. 31 N.C. Central
Sept. 7 at Memphis
Sept. 14 Georgia Tech
Sept. 21 Pittsburgh
Sept. 28 Troy
Oct. 5 Open
Oct. 12 Navy
Oct. 19 at Virginia
Oct. 26 at Virginia Tech
Nov. 2 Open
Nov. 9 N.C. State
Nov. 16 Miami
Nov. 23 at Wake Forest
Nov. 30 at North Carolina