MANHATTAN — Football season will start a day early at Kansas State this year.
The Wildcats’ opener against North Dakota State will be played at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 30 – a Friday — at Snyder Family Stadium. The game will be televised on Fox Sports 1, the new sports network announced Tuesday by Fox.
Athletic director John Currie, in an online letter to fans, indicated the decision to move the game away from Saturday was difficult, but wrote that playing on a weekday will be “an exciting opportunity for K-State, especially as we showcase the grand-opening of the new West Stadium Center.” Snyder Family Stadium is currently undergoing a $75 million renovation.
The game will be a week before Kansas high school football begins.
North Dakota State has won back-to-back national championships in the Football Championship Subdivision and has defeated Kansas, Minnesota and Colorado State in the past three seasons. That success made this game attractive to TV executives.
Currie wrote that the game could have been played a day later at either 11 a.m. or early afternoon, but K-State officials preferred an evening kickoff to avoid August heat. He also indicated that Fox offered to televise the game on Sunday evening, but K-State officials thought that would hurt student attendance and interfere with Labor Day plans.