Alabama, USC to Meet in 2016 Cowboys Classic in Arlington

Alabama-USC Cowboys Classic 2016
Alabama and USC will open the 2016 season in Arlington. (Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports)

The Alabama Crimson Tide and the USC Trojans will meet in the 2016 Cowboys Classic, both schools have officially announced.

The game will be played on Sept. 3, 2016 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

“We are excited to participate in a game that is such an attractive matchup for the nation’s fans,” said new USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian. “The 2016 Cowboys Classic not only brings together two of college football’s most tradition-laden and successful programs, but teams that in 1970 played a significant role in shaping the history of the game.

“At USC, we have always tried to schedule as many outstanding non-conference opponents as possible because we believe that should be part of the experience our players get when they come here. The Trojans versus the Crimson Tide in Arlington will certainly be such a game.”

Alabama and USC haven’t met in the regular season since a 1978 contest in Birmingham. The Crimson Tide lead the overall series 5-2 and won the last meeting 24-3 in the 1985 Aloha Bowl.

Alabama now has two non-conference games set for the 2016 season, and the USC game satisfies the SEC’s non-conference scheduling mandate. The Tide are also scheduled to host Western Kentucky on Sept. 10.

USC was previously scheduled to host New Mexico on Sept. 3, 2016, but the contest was moved to Sept. 19, 2020 to accommodate the Cowboys Classic game with Alabama.

The Trojans are also scheduled to host Notre Dame on Nov. 24, 2016.

Cowboys Classic Future Games

  • Aug. 30, 2014: Florida State vs. Oklahoma State
  • Sept. 5, 2015: Alabama vs. Wisconsin
  • Sept. 3, 2016: USC vs. Alabama
  • Sept. 2, 2017: Michigan vs. Florida

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Categories: Future NCAA Schedules, NCAA, Pac-10, SEC

43 Comments to Alabama, USC to Meet in 2016 Cowboys Classic in Arlington

  1. schoup

    Once again Bama avoids actually scheduling a home and home with a major opponents b/c they shrivel up when they actually play a real road game out of conference. Btw, USC has in the past and has in the future scheduled home and homes with anyone.

    • RollTide

      You will not see any big time college schools play true home and home games because of the money generated through the classics…and what makes you think anyone is scared of USC!!!

    • Georgia just scheduled a home-and-home with Notre Dame.

    • day

      I respect USC but their past/future home-n-home schedules consist of Boston College, Virginia, Syracuse, Minnesota & the only respectful one is OSU (The Ohio State). If USC agreed to this then why would is it be Bamas fault for the (no) home-n-home series? Is USC not accountable?

    • Alabama recently played a h-h with Penn State, although PSU was a little down at the time.

    • Michael in Raleigh

      Uh, do Florida and FSU (annual HAH), Clemson (HAH’s vs. SC and Georgia), LSU (HAH’s vs. Washington & WVU recently), and Ohio State (HAH vs. Va. Tech and others) not count as “big time college schools?” What about USC’s HAH vs. Notre Dame every year, or Oklahoma’s vs. Tennessee, or Michigan’s vs. Utah? Are none of these “big time college schools,” or is Alabama the only big time college school in America?

    • Shep

      @RollTide yeah, especially considering your Crimson & Cream pussed out of a H&H with Michigan State who have deals with Oregon, Arizona State, Miami, Notre Dame, etc.

    • Slick ric

      Is day said dumb? Usc scheduled home and home with auburn when they were the top team in the country and they scheduled with Arkansas. SC truly doesn’t care. Alabama won’t do it with an LA school because last time UCLA beat the brakes off their ass.

    • Mike Criddle

      Day’ s list of past USC OOC schedules ignored the home and homes with Auburn , Kansas State the yearly game with Notre Dame . What SEC team does this year after year…to my knowledge the only SEC team that will regularly do that sort of thing is LSU..which also proves RollTide’s comments to be incorrect

    • Day

      @Slick Ric: I was not going back 10-14 yrs to a home/n/home with Auburn & Arkansas, I meant recently who USC played home/n/home. I don’t think Bama is afraid to come out to LA & play because of the UCLA game. If that was the case then Bama would of forfeited the BCS game against Texas in 09″.

    • M.Sage

      Every PW5 should have 10 games against PW5 schools. SEC & ACC can be really sneaky by only scheduling 1 PW5 as they are mandated to do so. All PW5 should eliminate FCS forever. Back in the 80s, schools would never schedule like they do. Also, ALL PW5 should have to play 1 true road game out of conference because that’s simply a man’s game.

      Example: next year Alabama only plays 4 Away (in conference), 7 Home (4 conference, 3 weak non conference) & 1 Neutral Site ( Wisconsin) – SEC has played this sneaky scheduling to their advantage during the BCS Era (98′-13′) but got exposed in the CFB Playoff.

      We can’t go back in time and justify the inequities of the BCS Era but ALL conferences and sneaky teams (Bama & Baylor) can play a MAN’S game and schedule honorably and not like cowards. Spin it anyway you want but if you’re so good you shouldn’t be afraid or scared of think you’re above other teams not to accept the challenge of a Home/Away series against a major PW5 school.

      I’d personally like to see FSU vs. Bama (no neutral site please) and see Florida do a Home/Away versus a major PW5 school.

      Man up dudes! “Anytime, anywhere” should be all schools non conference scheduling motto not the garbage that we’re sometimes given.


    • USC has played the SEC on home and home games (Auburn 02′, in 03′ Auburn was ranked #6 and Arkansas 05′, 06′), and it was not pretty for the War Eagle and Razorbacks, so yes they may not scare anyone but they do accept challenges from all regardless of what conference they are from.

    • Day

      “Example: next year Alabama only plays 4 Away (in conference), 7 Home (4 conference, 3 weak non conference) & 1 Neutral Site ( Wisconsin) – SEC has played this sneaky scheduling to their advantage during the BCS Era (98′-13′) but got exposed in the CFB Playoff.”
      Are you saying this because Bama lost to Buckeyes? Cause Bama did beat Texas, Notre Dame & LSU in BCS Championship games, were they exposed then? You can find a problem with any team’s scheduling & there are a lot of teams from P5 that play FCS teams. There is nothing wrong with neutral site games, people that complain about the home in home don’t even go to the games. Times have changed since the 80’s & these “coward teams” you mention get payed very well & sometimes win.

    • Maverick

      Day, the whole point is that Alabama shouldn’t even have been in the NC game against LSU. Also, when they beat Texas, they knocked Colt McCoy out early on in the first quarter. The one championship they truly deserved 100% was beating the crap out of Notre Dame.

      Bama is a great team, but the SEC’s ridiculous scheduling is the reason we have the CFP.

    • Day

      Maverick, we have the playoffs cause everybody is whining & crying about the BCS, not because of Alabama’s schedule. Please don’t blame Colt McCoy getting knocked out as a reason Texas lost the game, Bama’s defense was dominate in that game & it is not Bama’s fault the teams lost in front of Alabama in which got them to the game against LSU. I agree Bama may should not have been there but who then, what other team, Bama lost early & rose back up the rankings.

    • Maverick

      @Day, As long as you agree that they probably shouldn’t have been there, then we’re good. Alabama was still a great CFP worthy team though those years.

      The BCS was the worst system. USC from 03-08 was the best team in college football (minus the one season of 2 losses). They should have been in the national championship more than the 2x it was, but because the BCS favored teams with more total wins (when the SEC and former B12 were the only conferences that played National Championship games) and the SEC continued to play doormat OOC games, USC was left out. Smh.

    • Day

      @Maverick, It all balances itself out, you seem to forget that Auburn got left out of the championship game thaks to USC & Oklahoma playing each other, yes they were preseason a head of Auburn but still the BIG 12 & PAC 12 won the game over. It is not the SEC or BIG 12 fault because USC did not make it into more championship games. I’m pretty sure TCU fans are upset this year because they got left out thaks to (primarily) The Ohio State putting up 59 on Wisconsin but those things happen all the time. USC was a dominating force in the 2000’s & will be again.

    • K

      Day, Auburn was left out of the national title game in 2004 because they had a crap OOC schedule. Playing FCS teams like Citadel doesn’t give a program on the precipice legit argument to play for it all. AU had a terrible bowl game win against VT too. Last but not least, AU’s head to head with USC the two years before didn’t help matters either. OU and SC was the correct matchup that year. In the end it’s about the OOC scheduling. The SEC’ is lacking big time compared to other power 5 programs for HAH.

    • day

      K, understandable but please keep in mind that Oklahoma & USC were preseason #1 & #2 I don’t think that Auburn could of done anything more to move up the rankings & in front of them. Yes Auburn had a close game with a great Vatech but on the other hand Oklahoma got taken to the woodshed as well by USC.

  2. Bruce Arbitblit

    Hope Sam Cunningham isn’t there!

  3. winston

    id love for my auburn tigers to get another crack at the mighty trojans. all sec teams seem to be announcing their power 5 opponents in chronological order i wonder if we’ll find out who our mystery opponent is next? im guessing most likely one of these

    or Georgia tech

    • David

      I’d take any of those three. Georgia Tech’s always a good choice since that used to be the annual Wreck Tech rivalry…. AU’s played Clemson plenty in the ol’ Tigers v. Tigers series. But the FSU game… in the 80’s that was a fun regular season game.

  4. Ricky W

    Saban said Alabama would be doing one neutral site game a season. So no don’t expect any true ‘away’ games.

    How about Alabama vs Oregon in a neutral site game (Glendale) in 2022,

  5. winston

    sadly as much as i hate to admit it traditional home and homes are fading away in favor of more neutral site games which is where the money is . college football is becoming too much of a corporate money game eentually the fans themself will be expected to pay money just to tailgate. hell wouldn’t surprise if in the next few years every single college football game goes the way of wwe. tna and mma and becomes a
    ppv event where the only way you can watch on tv is by ordering it . trying to be too much like the nfl will be college footballs greatest downfall

    yes im in favor of home and home for those wondering

  6. day

    Outstanding! It is about time, I have been waiting for this match up for about 15yrs.

  7. Too bad this game didn’t happen in 2008.

  8. M. Sage

    Great to see the matchup, but yet again Saban is scarred to take his team ON THE ROAD versus a Power 5 team. Neutral sites are all right but a home/away is man’s game.

    You know with Western Kentucky already on their 2016 slate that the remaining slate will be another Sun Belt school and some lame ass FCS chump.

    The playoff committee should not count wins versus an FCS school and should seriously penalize any team that doesn’t play a true road game out of conference.

    The SEC did this same tactic during the BCS era to their supreme advantage. Should wins against an FCS school really count as WINS when you’re encorporating and FBS playoff.

    Be for real and stop being cowards. Schedule like USC does then you’ll be a real man Mr. SABAN.

  9. Emanuel Gary

    its hard for most people to understand the natural advantage held by USC, so let me explain, there are 16 million people in Los Angeles county and all of them want their kids to attend USC, it is the heart and soul of Los Angeles, and in the middle of South Central L.A. and not going anywhere. There are 4 million in the whole state of Alabama.

  10. sitofthewhining

    Untill usc wins another championship or makes it there. Shut the hell up. Whatever the sec is doing with their scheduling is working. Oregon has not made a championship in a while despite the hype. When they did they lost. Usc lost yrs ago the last time. When any of those teams reach the championship again then come on here with this bullcrap. Till then shut up.

  11. hatebellyachers

    Agreed. People always talk trash cuz they teams aint winning. Maybe yall should model after the conference with 6 of the last 7 bcs titles or whatever the numbers are. Quit all this whining and tell your teams to do something about it. Running your mouth doesnt win football games.

  12. Robert matthews

    Who care where the games at. Im a Trojan fan and its great to see these great teams willing to play each other. Its better on a neutral field. No advantages let the teams play and we watch the war thats going to happen.

  13. Maverick

    I care. I want to attend the game and watch Alabama lose to USC in Los Angeles. Then I want to see us play a rematch on TV and beat Alabama in Tuscaloosa again. Neutral site games are for bowl games and annual rivalries, i.e. Florida-Georgia, Oklahoma-Texas.

    • day

      Spoken like a true fan, you want a home n home series but are unwilling to attend the game in Tuscaloosa. May be you can make the trip to the Dallas game & (as you want) see USC win, or better yet lose.

  14. Jett

    Alabama played a home and home and home against penn state in 2010 and 2011. We are gonna kick usc’s asses.

  15. Choke on that baby

    Alabama sucks. USC is going to demolish them (and the rest of ESPN’s crappy reporting) in Dallas. Enjoy beating up on the Dillon Panthers or some other high school football team.

  16. Chase Everett

    The sec has the hardest schedules every year if you make it through that gauntlet then to hell with these bullshit USC Michigan Norte dame ucla and fsu teams that don’t play anybody all year! Bama and Mr Saban faced auburn ole miss miss state Missouri. Two in the top five and two in the top twelve. And the reason the bcs was so hated is because nobody else could make it and everybody got tired of seeing the sec whoop that ass
    Having said all that ROLL TIDE!

  17. Chase Everett

    L.A. Has 14 million people that’s great Bama has 15 National titles so total all of La teams together and Alabama and auburn’s together tell me who has more All Sec Baby Roll Tode


    Mark my words! NO SEC team will ever win CFP. Unless 4 SEC teams ended up in on the top 4 rankings, which by the way is NOT realistic, but you never know what ESPN might break out under their sleeve.

  19. melson

    It’s fun to see comments on who going to kick who’s ass, like it really means something. Still, Bama vs USC, I can see ghosts of Bear Bryant and John McKay, back in the day. That’s what college football is about and that’s why we play the game. Roll Tide!

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