Georgia, Clemson football to meet in 2021

Bulldogs' future non-conference opponents

Georgia and Clemson will face each other to open the 2021 season, UGA officials announced Tuesday. That represents a considerable upgrade to the non-conference slate that season.

Previously, Georgia was playing non-conference games San Jose State, Alabama-Birmingham and Charleston Southern in addition to its annual matchup against Georgia Tech. The Clemson game will replace San Jose State in that lineup.

The 2021 Clemson game will be played at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend, Sept. 4, 2021. This gives Georgia and Clemson six games lined up over a 13-year period.

The schools previously agreed to play each other in a Chick-fil-A Kickoff game Aug. 31, 2024 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. They also have a home-and-home arrangements set for Sept. 15, 2029 at Clemson and Aug. 31, 2030 at UGA and for Sept. 4, 2032 in Athens and Sept. 3, 2033 in Clemson.

“This is another great opportunity to schedule a national non-conference game with a top-level opponent,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said in a news release. “Playing a regular-season game in Charlotte will give our fans the opportunity for a completely new experience in a great city and top-level stadium. I know our coaches and players will be excited for the challenge to kick off the season in this kind of environment.”

Bank of America Stadium is home to the NFL’s Carolina Panthers.

Georgia and Clemson haven’t met since the 2014 season, when Georgia won 45-21 in Athens. Georgia leads the series all-time 42-18-4, but the teams have met only eight teams since the 1987 season, when the Bulldogs and Tigers ceased playing each other annually. UGA has won six of the past eight games in the series.

Though the game against Clemson in 2021 replaces the previously scheduled home game against San Jose State, UGA will have to pay San Jose State the full $1.8 million it was guaranteed for the game.

In addition to the games against Clemson, Georgia previously announced home-and-home series with five other Power 5 non-conference opponents: Texas (2028 in Austin and 2029 in Athens); UCLA (2025 in Pasadena, Calif., and 2026 in Athens); Florida State (2027 in Tallahassee and 2028 in Athens); Oklahoma (2023 in Norman and 2031 in Athens); and Ohio State (2030 in Athens and 2031 in Columbus). The Bulldogs also have agreed to play Virginia (2020) and Oregon (2022) in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium: 2020 vs. Virginia.

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