The roars in stadiums will be back soon with FCS college football because the spring season that ended on May 16 with Sam Houston crowned as national champion was just over three months from the fall kickoff.

Excitement in the early weeks of the season often involves FCS programs making the step up to play larger FBS programs. This fall, there are 117 matchups between the two levels of Division I, involving 97 of the 128 FCS programs.

Southern Utah faces San Jose State in the first matchup on Aug. 28, LIU has the most FBS games with three, and there are matchups against such powers as Alabama (Mercer), Clemson (South Carolina State), Oklahoma (Western Carolina), Georgia (Charleston Southern) and LSU (McNeese).

Sam Houston isn’t facing an FBS opponent, scheduling only 10 regular-season games due to the short turnaround between seasons. The other two most recent national champions, North Dakota State and James Madison, also don’t have a FBS matchup.

Still, there are plenty of possible upsets to go around, with FCS teams hoping to add to the ones Jacksonville State (FIU) and Tarleton (New Mexico State) posted during the fall 2020/spring 2021 season.

Here’s a breakdown of 2021 FCS vs. FBS games by conference (all games played at FBS schools unless noted):=


Cal Poly: Fresno State (Sept. 11); Eastern Washington: UNLV (Sept. 2); Idaho: Indiana (Sept. 11) and Oregon State (Sept. 18); Idaho State: Nevada (Sept. 11) and BYU (Nov. 6); Montana: Washington (Sept. 4); Montana State: Wyoming (Sept. 4); Northern Arizona: Arizona (Sept. 18); Northern Colorado: Colorado (Sept. 3); Portland State: Hawaii (Sept. 4) and Washington State (Sept. 11); Sacramento State: Cal (Sept. 18); Southern Utah: San Jose State (Aug. 28) and Arizona State (Sept. 2); UC Davis: Tulsa (Sept. 2); Weber State: Utah (Sept. 2)


Campbell: Liberty (Sept. 4); Charleston Southern: East Carolina (Sept. 25) and Georgia (Nov. 20); Gardner-Webb: Georgia Southern (Sept. 4) and Charlotte (Sept. 11); Hampton: Old Dominion (Sept. 11); Kennesaw State: Georgia Tech (Sept. 11); Monmouth: Middle Tennessee (Sept. 4); North Carolina A&T: Duke (Sept. 10); Robert Morris: Central Michigan (Sept. 11)


Delaware: Rutgers (Sept. 18); Elon: Appalachian State (Sept. 18); Maine: Northern Illinois (Sept. 25) and UMass (Nov. 13); New Hampshire: Pittsburgh (Sept. 25); Rhode Island: UMass (Nov. 6); Richmond: Virginia Tech (Sept. 25); Stony Brook: Oregon (Sept. 18); Towson: San Diego State (Sept. 25); UAlbany: Syracuse (Sept. 18); Villanova: Penn State (Sept. 25); William & Mary: Virginia (Sept. 4)


Yale: UConn (Oct. 16)


Howard: Maryland (Sept. 11); Morgan State: Tulane (Sept. 11); North Carolina Central: Marshall (Sept. 11); Norfolk State: Toledo (Sept. 4) and Wake Forest (Sept. 11); South Carolina State: Clemson (Sept. 11) and New Mexico State (Sept. 18)


Illinois State: Western Michigan (Sept. 11); Indiana State: Northwestern (Sept. 11); Missouri State: Oklahoma State (Sept. 4); North Dakota: Utah State (Sept. 11); Northern Iowa: Iowa State (Sept. 4); South Dakota: Kansas (Sept. 3); South Dakota State: Colorado State (Sept. 3); Southern Illinois: Kansas State (Sept. 11); Western Illinois: Ball State (Sept. 2); Youngstown State: Michigan State (Sept. 11)


Bryant: Akron (Sept. 18); Central Connecticut State: Miami-Fla. (Sept. 25); Duquesne: TCU (Sept. 4) and Ohio (Sept. 11); LIU: FIU (Sept. 2), West Virginia (Sept. 11) and Miami-Ohio (Sept. 18); Saint Francis: Eastern Michigan (Sept. 3); Wagner: Buffalo (Sept. 2) and Temple (Sept. 25)


Austin Peay: Ole Miss (Sept. 11); Eastern Illinois: South Carolina (Sept. 4); Murray State: Cincinnati (Sept. 11) and Bowling Green (Sept. 18); Southeast Missouri: Missouri (Sept. 18); Tennessee State: Mississippi State (Nov. 20); Tennessee Tech: Tennessee (Sept. 18); UT Martin: Western Kentucky (Sept. 2)


Bucknell: Army (Nov. 13); Colgate: Boston College (Sept. 4); Fordham: Nebraska (Sept. 4) and Florida Atlantic (Sept. 18); Holy Cross: UConn (Sept. 4); Lafayette: Air Force (Sept. 4)


Chattanooga: Kentucky (Sept. 18); ETSU: Vanderbilt (Sept. 4); Furman: North Carolina State (Sept. 18); Mercer: Alabama (Sept. 11); Samford: Florida (Nov. 13); The Citadel: Coastal Carolina (Sept. 2); VMI: Kent State (Sept. 11); Western Carolina: Oklahoma (Sept. 11); Wofford: North Carolina (Nov. 20)


Houston Baptist: New Mexico (Sept. 2); McNeese: LSU (Sept. 11); Nicholls: Memphis (Sept. 4) and Louisiana (Sept. 11); Northwestern State: North Texas (Sept. 4); Southeastern Louisiana: Louisiana Tech (Sept. 11); UIW: Texas State (Sept. 18)


Alabama State: Auburn (Sept. 11); Alcorn State: South Alabama (Sept. 18); Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Arkansas (Oct. 23 in Little Rock, Arkansas); Bethune-Cookman: UTEP (Sept. 4) and UCF (Sept. 11); Florida A&M: South Florida (Sept. 18); Grambling State: Southern Miss (Sept. 11) and Houston (Sept. 18); Jackson State: ULM (Sept. 18); Prairie View A&M: Texas A&M (Nov. 20); Southern: Troy (Sept. 4); Texas Southern: Baylor (Sept. 11) and Rice (Sept. 25)


Abilene Christian: SMU (Sept. 4); Central Arkansas: Arkansas State (Sept. 4); Eastern Kentucky: Louisville (Sept. 11); Jacksonville State: UAB (Sept. 1 in Montgomery, Alabama) and Florida State (Sept. 11); Lamar: UTSA (Sept. 11); Stephen F. Austin: Texas Tech (Sept. 11)