NEWARK, Del.  -- The University of Delaware football squad has finalized its upcoming 2014 schedule with defending Northeast Conference champion Sacred Heart set to visit Delaware Stadium on Oct. 4, UD Director of Athletics and Recreation Services Eric Ziady announced Tuesday.  

Ziady also announced the University's Homecoming and Parents & Family Weekend dates for this coming fall. Delaware will host Parents & Family Weekend Oct. 11 vs. league newcomer Elon followed the next week, Oct. 18, with a Homecoming meeting against Colonial Athletic Association rival and 2013 national runner-up Towson.

In addition, Delaware football head coach Dave Brock has also announced that the football squad will return to Milford (Del.) High School for the second straight year to take part in a spring practice. The event, which will also include youth clinics, prizes, food, and family-friendly activities throughout the day, will take place on Saturday, Apr. 26.  Delaware will open pre-season spring practice on Tuesday, Apr. 8 and close out drills with the annual Blue-White Spring Game and Fandemonium event on Saturday, May 3, at Delaware Stadium.

“We are excited about the upcoming 2014 football season and look forward to all Blue Hens fans joining us for these special events,” said Ziady. “The opportunity to add a 12th game - and a seventh home game at Delaware Stadium - especially against an opponent that advanced to the NCAA playoffs a year ago was a positive development for our program. Homecoming and Parents & Family Weekend are always special days on our campus as we are thrilled to welcome back our alumni and families to the great collegiate atmosphere of Delaware Stadium. We’re also excited to bring our football program downstate again this spring. Our team really enjoyed its first trip to Milford last season and we are excited to return and give our fans throughout the state an inside look at what is in store for next fall as we develop this new spring tradition.”

The first-ever meeting between Delaware and Sacred Heart will take place on Saturday, Oct. 4, at 3:30 p.m. at Delaware Stadium. The non-league matchup will be the Hens’ third straight home game of the month after a Sept. 6 game with in-state opponent Delaware State and a Sept. 13 meeting with Patriot League contender Colgate. Delaware had announced its preliminary 2014 schedule back on Nov. 4 while still working to add the 12th game.

Fairfield, Conn.-based Sacred Heart, led by head coach Mark Nofri, enjoyed one its finest seasons in school history this past fall as the Saint posted a 10-3 record, captured the Northeast Conference title with a record of 4-2, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history before falling to Fordham 37-27 in the opening round.  Among the top returning players for the Pioneers are All-American running back Keshaudas Spencer, All-American defensive lineman Troy Moore, and Northeast Conference Rookie of the Year in quarterback R.J. Noel.

Delaware completed its 2013 season under first-year head coach Dave Brock with a 7-5 overall mark and a 4-4 slate in CAA play, good for a tie for fifth place in the league standings. The Blue Hens received votes in every The Sports Network Top 25 poll during the season, climbing as high as 15th on Nov. 4. The Blue Hens will return six starters from an offense that ranked among the league leaders in scoring and total offense.

2014 University of Delaware Football Schedule

Aug. 30 at Pittsburgh  - tba
Sept. 6 vs. Delaware State - 6 p.m.
Sept. 13 vs. Colgate - 6 p.m.
Sept. 20 - Open Date
Sept. 27 at *James Madison, tba
Oct. 4  vs. Sacred Heart, 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 11 vs. *Elon, 3:30 p.m. (Parents & Family Weekend)
Oct. 18 vs. *Towson, 3:30 p.m. (Homecoming)
Oct. 25 at *William & Mary, tba
Nov. 1 vs. *Rhode Island, 12 noon
Nov. 8 at *Albany, tba
Nov. 15 at *New Hampshire, tba
Nov. 22 vs. *Villanova, 12 noon

*=Colonial Athletic Association Game
Dates and Times Subject to Change