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Pitt and Wisconsin agree to two-year football series

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The Panthers and Badgers will play a home-and-home series starting in 2026

Penn State v Pittsburgh Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Pitt athletic director Heather Lyke announced on Tuesday that Pitt and Wisconsin have agreed to play a home-and-home series that will run from 2026 to 2027. The first game of the series will be played at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison on Sept. 19, 2026, and the second installment is set for Sept. 11, 2027, at Heinz Field.

”In speaking with [Wisconsin athletic director] Barry Alvarez, we both felt this was a great scheduling opportunity,” Lyke said in a Pitt press release. “Despite our regional proximity, we’ve rarely played each other in football. It is a challenging and compelling non-conference game that our respective teams and fans can look forward to.”

The news comes on the heels of a disappointing development between Pitt and a more familiar Big Ten school, as Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour said earlier in May that the rivalry series between Pitt and Penn State would most likely be shelved until “some point after 2030.”

The Panthers and Badgers haven’t met on the gridiron since 1967, and by the time they square off in 2026, it will be the first time the two sides have taken the field together in 59 years.

But despite the lack of familiarity between the two teams, there are at least a few points of intrigue, as the matchup could pit the Panthers against former Pitt head coach Paul Chryst. In addition to that, Pitt is undefeated in its previous three matchups with Wisconsin, although its worth noting that two of those wins came under Jock Sutherland during the era of the Dream Backfield.

The agreement also matches Pitt up with a tougher opponent than Penn State, as Wisconsin has won the Big Ten’s West Division three of the last four years, while Penn State has struggled to keep pace with Ohio State in the East, only coming out on top once in that same span. Wisconsin also bested Penn State in 2017, finishing just ahead of the Nittany Lions at seventh in the AP poll.