Fresno State has loaded up its future football schedules with Power Five opponents, almost all guarantee games on the road including matchups this season at Alabama and at Washington that are worth $1.4 million and $1 million to the athletic department.
Fresno State added another one Tuesday, this time with a twist.
The Bulldogs and Oregon State have finalized a contract to play a home-and-home series starting at Bulldog Stadium on Sept. 10, 2022, with the return game at Reser Stadium in Corvallis on Aug. 31, 2024.
For the Bulldogs that is a bonus – competitively and at the gate.
Fresno State has not fared well against Power Five opponents. Since a victory over Colorado in 2012, they are 0-7 and those losses have come by an average of 34 points. But they at least will get the Beavers at Bulldog Stadium, where until the past two seasons they have had some success.
The Bulldogs were 17-2 at home from 2012 to 2014 before going 2-4 in 2015 and 1-5 in ’16.
The bigger teams also have attracted more fans to Bulldog Stadium and the past two, Utah in 2015 and Nebraska in 2014, marked the highest attendance in those two seasons.
Fresno State last season did not have a marquee game on its home schedule in a 1-11 season, playing Sacramento State and Tulsa in non-conference games and San Diego State, Air Force, Hawaii and San Jose State in Mountain West games.
The Bulldogs have played Oregon State 13 times, most recently in 2003. The Bulldogs lead the series 8-5 and are 6-0 in games played at Bulldog Stadium.
Former Fresno State basketball star Scott Barnes is the Oregon State athletic director, named to the post in December.
Robert Kuwada: @rkuwada