Northwestern is paying the University of Nevada $1.2 million to come to Evanston for a non-conference football matchup in 2017, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal. The game is scheduled for September 16.
The $1.2 million payout is the second-biggest in Nevada history, trailing only the $1.5 million the school received last year from Texas A&M. The Wolf Pack is also earning $1 million to play Notre Dame this upcoming season.
Northwestern paid Northern Illinois $500,000 and Western Illinois $350,000 in 2014, so this represents a steep price raise from what the program had been accustomed to. The move, at least monetarily, catches Northwestern up with the premier Big Ten programs, which regularly spend over $1 million to face higher-quality non-conference opponents. From a 2014 release:
This season, Miami (Ohio) will take home $1.1 million to play at Michigan, Florida Atlantic will get $1 million to play at Nebraska and Ball State $900,000 for playing at Iowa. Miami (Ohio) is set to make $1 million in 2015 at Wisconsin, Sayler said, and fellow Mid-American Conference school Ball State will collect a program-record $1.2 million for playing at Texas A&M. Wisconsin also will pay $1.2 million to host Florida Atlantic in 2017.
Northwestern will also have a non-conference game at Duke in 2017. Here is the 2017 conference schedule:
Sept. 30 — at Wisconsin
Oct. 7 — vs. Penn State
Oct. 14 — at Maryland
Oct. 21 — vs. Iowa
Oct. 28 — vs. Michigan State
Nov. 4 — at Nebraska
Nov. 11 — vs. Purdue
Nov. 18 — vs. Minnesota
Nov. 25 — at Illinois