When the Washington State Cougars take their first trip away from the friendly confines of Martin Stadium next season, they won’t be traveling to another campus for their first road contest, as was originally scheduled. Instead, according to a report, they’ll be taking on the Houston Cougars at NRG Stadium in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff on Sept. 13, 2019.
College football sources: #17 @UHCougarFB reached an agreement to move its 2019 game with Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) and #10 Washington State (@WSUCougFB) to NRG Stadium & will be played on Sept. 13, 2019 in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (@TexasKickoff). It'll be Cougars vs Cougars— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) October 29, 2018
It’s still a home game for Houston, as NRG Stadium is the home of the NFL’s Houston Texans. But it’s a much larger venue, and should also make the trip more attractive for WSU fans who were thinking about traveling with the team — sitting indoors in Houston sounds infinitely more appealing than sitting outdoors in the middle of September.
Beyond that, it should make what is expected to be a reasonably tough game maybe just a little bit easier; as we know from our Seattle Game experiences, playing away from campus just isn’t the same, no matter how many of your own fans are in the stadium. Additionally, the weather conditions will be perfect, making for some peak Air Raidin’.
There’s no word as to whether this results in an increased payday for WSU, but one would think that with a special sponsor for what is a bowl-like setup, there might be a little extra cash. And even if there isn’t, it certainly seems like a net positive for WSU, anyway.
WSU also takes on New Mexico State and Northern Colorado in the non-conference slate next year before facing a home Pac-12 slate of Colorado, Oregon State, Stanford and UCLA. The Cougs will take on ASU, Cal, Oregon, Utah and Washington on the road.