Entering the program’s second season under head coach Jamey Chadwell, the Liberty Flames are looking to get back to a sixth straight bowl game in 2024 while also competing for a repeat Conference USA championship.

This is not just simply a list of teams ranked in order of strength on Liberty’s schedule. There are other factors like where the game is being played, where the game falls on the schedule, who the teams play the week prior and what is going on at the different schools. With that said, here’s a ranking of Liberty’s 2024 football opponents on this year’s schedule, from least to most difficult:

12. Aug. 31: vs Campbell

After not facing an FCS opponent in 2023, Liberty will welcome Campbell to Williams Stadium to open the 2024 campaign. The Flames are 8-0 against FCS opponents since making the move to the FBS prior to the 2018 season. The Camels were 5-6 a year ago and 4-4 in CAA play. They lost to North Carolina, 59-7, in their only contest against an FBS opponent in 2023. Liberty defeated Campbell, 48-7, to open the 2021 season.

11. Oct. 8: vs FIU

Liberty took care of the Panthers in Miami last year, 38-6, in a game that didn’t feel that close. FIU finished the 2023 season at 4-8 overall and 1-7 in CUSA play. This year’s game falls at a nice spot on the schedule for the Flames. It’s Liberty’s first game in the midweek schedule for October, being played on a Tuesday night in Lynchburg at Williams Stadium. It comes 10 days after Liberty’s previous game at Appalachian State. Following the FIU game, Liberty has over two weeks to prepare for Kennesaw State on Oct. 23. Coach Chadwell will certainly have his team prepared and focused exclusively on this one game when Oct. 8 rolls around.

10. Nov. 16: @ UMass

Liberty steps out of conference play just one time in November this season when the Flames travel to Massachusetts to face UMass for the final scheduled meeting between the two opponents. The Flames have dominated this series between the two former FBS Independents as the Minutemen prepare to enter the MAC. Liberty has won 5 straight against UMass and neither of the contests have been very close.

9. Oct. 23: @ Kennesaw State

Kennesaw State makes the e move from the ASUN and the FCS to CUSA and the FBS. It might take a couple years for the Owls to make the adjustment to the increased level of play, but there’s no reason to think they won’t be a strong competitor in Conference USA. Kennesaw was 3-6 overall last year, but we can pretty much throw those results out as they were making the transition to the FBS. Liberty will have an extra week to prepare for it’s trip to Georgia.

8. Sept. 14: vs UTEP

The 2024 version of the Miners will be much different than that of the 2023 version. UTEP welcomes in first year head coach Scotty Walden, and, having to take on Liberty in Lynchburg for the first time in the Flames’ first home CUSA game of the 2024 will be a tall task for Walden and the Miners.

7. Nov. 9: @ Middle Tennessee

The Blue Raiders also have a first year head coach as Derek Mason takes over in Murfreesboro. It will be Liberty’s first trip there since joining the FBS and CUSA. The Flames will have about 10 days to prepare for MTSU.

6. Nov. 29: @ Sam Houston

Liberty’s regular season finale is at Sam Houston on Black Friday. The Bearkats, despite a disappointing first year in CUSA and the FBS in 2023, put a scare into the Flames in Lynchburg. Liberty needed a final minute defensive stand to preserve the win and ultimately finish with an undefeated regular season. Sam Houston is expected to be much improved this year and turn some of their close losses from last year into wins. This game could even be Sam Houston fighting for bowl eligibility while it might not mean a ton for Liberty if the Flames have already secured a spot in the CUSA Championship game.

5. Sept. 7: @ New Mexico State

Week two of the 2024 season will feature a rematch of the 2023 CUSA Championship Game between two 10-win programs. While Liberty returns its coaching staff and much of its team from last year, the Aggies will have a completely different look including a new coaching staff and several new faces on the roster. That doesn’t mean it will be an easy win for Liberty as NMSU will be geared up to prove they will not have a let down from last year. Plus, it’s a long trip for Liberty to make. It should be a good early season test for the Flames.

4. Oct. 30: vs Jacksonville State

Under head coach Rich Rodriguez, Jacksonville State was not only the surprise of CUSA but one of the big surprises in college football in 2023, their first year at the FBS level and competing in Conference USA. Now the Gamecocks will once again be looking to compete for the conference championship and will come to Lynchburg on a Wednesday night in late October looking to spring the upset.

3. Sept. 21: vs East Carolina

Don’t pay too much attention to ECU’s 2-10 record from 2023, they will be one of the most talented teams Liberty will face this fall. The Pirates won 8 games in 2022, including the Birmingham Bowl. Under head coach Mike Houston, East Carolina has posted two winning records, in 2021 and 2022, and are looking to get back to their level of competing for conference championships like they did routinely while in Conference USA.

2. Nov. 23: vs Western Kentucky

The Hilltoppers had a disappointing 2023 when they were supposed to compete for the CUSA Championship. They were unable to find consistency throughout the season, competing at that level, finishing the year at 8-5 overall and in fourth place in CUSA at 5-3. This year, the Flames will take on WKU in Liberty’s regular season home finale in what could be a pivotal matchup in determining who plays in the 2024 CUSA Conference Championship Game just two weeks later.

1. Sept. 28: @ Appalachian State

If there has been a program Liberty has closely followed in terms of success at the FBS level after moving up from the FCS ranks, it has been Appalachian State. The Mountaineers found immediate success in the Sun Belt, appearing in 8 bowl games in their first 9 years at the FBS. App State has been ranked in the AP Top 25 poll during three different seasons, finishing No. 19 at the conclusion of the 2019 season when App State finished 13-1. This year’s game is between teams that are expected to compete for their respected conference championship and could have College Football Playoff implications.