Ole Miss to face two FCS teams in 2009


Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

Ole Miss is poised to have one of the best teams it's had in years next season. The Rebels will also have one of the easiest nonconference schedules an SEC team has faced in years.

After going back and forth with several teams in an attempt to find a 12th opponent, Ole Miss announced Tuesday that it would face Northern Arizona on Nov. 7 next season. That gives the Rebels two FCS opponents on their schedule in 2009. They also face Southeastern Louisiana on Sept. 19.

What that means is that only one of those games would count toward the six wins required for Ole Miss to be bowl eligible. An FBS team isn't allowed to count more than one win against an FCS team to its win total for bowl eligibility.

So assuming the Rebels win both of those games next season, they would have to win five more and get to seven wins before they would become bowl eligible. Normally, six wins qualifies a team for a bowl game.

Ole Miss' other two nonconference games are against Memphis on the road on Sept. 5 and Alabama-Birmingham at home on Oct. 17.

"We didn't intend to schedule two I-AA teams nor do we anticipate scheduling two I-AA teams in the same year again," Ole Miss athletic director Pete Boone said.