Nov. 17, 2005
Winston-Salem, NC - The Winston-Salem State University Department of Athletics announced the 2006 WSSU Ram football schedule on Thursday afternoon. The schedule, which spans a period of 13 weeks, will see the Rams face 11 opponents, nine of which are Division I-AA institutions and are members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. WSSU will host four home games in Winston-Salem, NC and take to the road for seven contests.
The Rams, who will enter into the second year of their transition from NCAA Division II classification towards NCAA Division I, will compete in their first year of Division I competition following 2005-06's exploratory year.
The 2006 season opens as the Rams take to the road to face Division II national power Catawba College in Salisbury, NC.
Following the contest versus the Indians, the Rams will face the Aggies of North Carolina A&T State University in Labor Day Weekend's "Battle of I-40" before returning home to face the Bulldogs of South Carolina State University.
WSSU's first of two open weekends comes on September 16, 2006 before the Rams prepare to face the Rattlers of Florida A&M in Tallahassee, FL a contest that any battle of the bands fan is sure to attend.
The Rams will face Coastal Carolina University on September 30, 2006 and host the Bison of Howard University for Homecoming 2006 on October 7, 2006 before again returning to the road for three contests.
WSSU's next three opponents will be members of the MEAC as the Rams face Bethune Cookman College (Daytona Beach, FL), Savannah State University (Savannah, GA), and Hampton University (Hampton, VA) over the span of three weeks.
WSSU closes the season versus Saint Augustine's College (November 4, 2006) and Norfolk State University (November 18, 2006).
Commenting on the schedule, WSSU Director of Athletics, Dr. Chico Caldwell, said the following:
"First of all, I would like to say that I am glad that this schedule is complete. As we move into the MEAC and Division I, I recognize we are like the stepchild coming into the league, which means that getting home games is tough. It was a challenge to get the schedule complete as everyone wanted to play us, but everyone wanted to place us at their home field, which made getting home games very difficult. However, we were able to secure four home games for us before the other teams had completed their schedules. We also recognize that we are jumping into the fire so to speak, and I have met with the coaching staff and have discussed our need to bring in players of another level of size and speed in order to be successful at the Division I level. In our discussions, I have seen unbridled enthusiasm on the part of our coaches, and have heard talk of recruits from Texas and Florida, two states which are hotbeds of high school football talent and which will help to bring size and speed to our team. I talked to the staff and they are all aware of what things must to be done in order to bring in the talent that we need, and now, as Director of Athletics, the challenge to me is to step up our budget as much as I can in order to add scholarships to facilitate bringing in this new talent. This transition will be a challenging time for myself and the Athletic Department staff, but will be unparalleled in excitement and fun for our fans. We truly are looking forward to the 2006 season and MEAC play."
For additional information on WSSU Athletics or the Rams' transition to NCAA Division I status, contact the WSSU Office of Sports Information at (336) 750-2143 or log on to the Official Website of WSSU Athletics at www.WSSURAMS.com