Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Five non-BCS schools we should schedule

Want to see a BC Athletic Department representative roll his or her eyes: suggest that BC should drop the FCS and MAC games and schedule non-conference games against Alabama, Ohio State and Texas every year. We all know it is not going to happen. The FCS game is a permanent slot on every FBS school's schedule. BC is also not going to ever play three BCS opponents out of conference in one season. That means with most of our BCS opponents spoken for over the next ten years (Notre Dame, Syracuse, USC, Northwestern) we should really start to get strategic and creative in which non-BCS opponents we should play. I have my ideas and would like to here yours. (Because BC doesn't have the money to buy games I am assuming that these agreements will always be home and home or on occasion a 2 for 1 in BC's favor.)

1. Northern Illinois
The Chicagoland area is important for BC and BC football. We have a strong alumni base there. We continue to accept many students from the area and the football team is now recruiting the area competitively again. Given our history with the MAC, Northern Illinois would probably entertain a 2 for 1, since BCS programs rarely play at their stadiums. The only argument against playing there is that our Chicago fans already have Northwestern and Notre Dame games to attend. There are other pockets of alums that also deserve to see BC in person.

2. San Jose State
My rationale for playing the Spartans is very similar to the idea behind playing Northern Illinois. I would much rather play Stanford or Cal in front of our Bay Area fans and alums, but we might have to wait seven or eight years before Stanford and Cal are open on the same year we only have one BCS opponent. We could probably get San Jose State on board in the near future.

3. Temple
For years BC wanted Temple off the schedule and now I am suggesting adding them back! But my logic is a bit different now. When the Temple game was a Big East conference game, it represented a dead spot in the schedule. It was filler to pad the win total and generated zero excitement. At the time Temple was one of the worst programs in college football. Now things are a little different. They are much improved and might represent an interesting matchup on occasion. Plus with 12 games, you are going to play some lower level teams. So shouldn't BC play a team that it has a bit of history with? It doesn't hurt that eastern PA and New Jersey are still important recruiting grounds for us. And financially it is an inexpensive trip.

4. Navy
Army is back on the schedule, so let's get the Naval Academy back on too. I assume BC has not been in a rush to play Navy because it would represent a very tough game. But assuming that Navy will maintain their current success another five to ten years is presumptuous. What BC should rely on is our history with the Service Academies and our inherent advantages over them on the football field. In most years BC would be a heavy favorite to beat Navy. Not scheduling them out of fear is lame.

5. Tulane
Because our ACC schedule brings us south so often, I know Gene wants to visit other areas of the country. But that shouldn't prevent us from playing Tulane. Not only would it be a fun and unique trip for many BC fans, but we should also seek out like minded schools for our opponents. We take pride in doing things the right way and recruiting student athletes. Shouldn't we play other schools that do the same?


blist said...

How about San Diego State? Gets us to SoCal and California is a big state for BC, student-wise.

Bravesbill said...

Hey I was about to suggest SDSU as well given that there is a large alumni population in SoCal. Stick a game at TCU or SMU (if you want an easier team) because it opens up Texas and the Southwest and Air Force (Denver and Mountain states) and things could get interesting.

Scott said...

I can't go for these match-ups.

Top priority should be Penn State. Any year we can grab them, we should do it. That is the only game that really matters to the region.

Otherwise, each year make inquiries to academic peers with some name cache: Berkeley, Stanford, Northwestern, Vandy, Illinois. Maybe BYU, Rice.

If we ever want to reach out to a Big East Team, only deal with Pittsburgh, at least they weren't pushing it, and we recruit that area.

Tulane is a good school, but BC will never recruit athletes or students from Louisiana.

The academies are good games, b/c they get on TV, and they are good warm-ups for GTech & Wake.

If we have to go D 1-AA. If we don't do a regional one (UMASS, UNH), then pick one from a desired recruiting area, like Virginia, where Richmond and William & Mary sit in prime recruiting territory .. the only problem is that they are top 10 1-AA programs.

Eagles97 said...

If I were Gene my priority would be:

1) Navy
2) Tulane
3) Hawaii
4) MW Conf (Air Force or BYU)

Navy - we have history, game is drivable for a fair amount of alumni. Would sell tickets at home as well

Tulane - Agree with your comments, plus it would be a good trip for alumni with a direct flight from Boston.

Hawaii - Good trip for alumni and players, either open or close the season. Western (late TV) exposure.

MW - Quality opponent

Additionally, I hate the FCS game and think it should go. If we are stuck with it I would only schedule the following teams:

Maine *

Rotate them every 4 years
* Would sub Holy Cross or Harvard but I don't think either will sig up for that.

mod34b said...

Eagle97 -- Northeastern disbanded their football team last year! Oops!

Eagles97 said...

I did know that, but forgot. Opps. That is part of the problem with scheduling FCS teams.

Ryan said...

Play Villanova. Catholic school, former big east rivalry, regional, tons of connections between the schools to get people to the game, and Nova is one of the best programs in the FCS. Of course, we can't lose the actual game.

Scott said...

The one problem with playing Navy in the regular season is that a match-up with Navy is our back-up bowl invite each year.

Another advantage of playing temple is that they are 1-A, so that win really counts.

I'm really against the game against Tulane. BC has a hard enough time traveling. If we start enabling our fans to plan their big vacation during the season, they will never show to the Championship Game or bowl.

Matt said...


BC should be scheduling games against the urban, southern, C-USA schools that usually attract the same types of athletes that usually come to BC: the promising two and three-star talent that don't make the cut at schools like Texas, Oklahoma, LSU, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, etc.

BC has already made a good move by scheduling UCF next year. And Bill, You're right on the money with suggesting Tulane. BC should also seriously consider Houston, Rice, SMU, Tulsa, Memphis, UTEP, and UAB.

Not only do these teams attract promising non-marquee athletes, they are also located in cities with large Catholic high schools (with notable Jesuit athletic powerhouses in Dallas and Houston) whose students may already be considering BC. Finally, if BC were to play road games in these cities, it may give some "street cred" to our program, which is often dismissed down South as "one of those basketball schools."

I'd be interested to hear anyone else's take on this...

emil!!! said...

I think we should schedule UNM or NMSU...

....yes I'm from Albuquerque...

chicagofire1871 said...

Yes to San Jose State. Play in a major media market against a very beatable opponent, and satisfy the NorCal alumni base.

Father Leahy has said he wanted games in Chicago and California for this very reason. Northwestern and USC satisfy this. San Diego State and San Jose State would continue it, if we aren't able to play the BCS versions more consistently.

Erik said...

Good discussion topic, ATL. What I enjoy about Army and Syracuse are that they're driveable. Temple would offer that feature for an overnight road trip.
I hope we always have at least one game in that radius.
I like UCF for the Orlando aspect, so that is gonna be fun. Chicago is gonna kick @ss.
Overall fun destinations are more important than recruiting hotbeds.
San Diego State, Wyoming maybe?

Overall I'm pretty pleased with out upcoming locations, including ACC spots.

GP11 said...

Really like the ideas that have been thrown out about a C-USA Texas team. Huge population and their backups in high school could be diamond in the rough players that BC loves to develop... UTEP, Houston, SMU, etc.

Patrick said...

Northwestern, Vanderbilt, Stanford, and Rice would be my choices

Erik said...

Oh, forgot to mention. UNLV is a no-brainer. Put them at the top of the list.

BrynMawrEagle said...

Amen on Temple. We Philadelphia area alums are dying to get a local game to watch BC live - either in Hoops or football! It has been way too long. And if we are going to play the MAC anyway, then why not Temple?

Adam said...

FWIW, we can't play any of the Ivies or Holy Cross as they do not field enough scholarship players for our win to count towards bowl eligibility - so they're non-starters for our D-IAA game.

I do like the idea of playing in metro areas in Texas and Cal to keep us on the radar for recruits down there.

ATL, you're right - as long as SOS is not part of the BCS calculation - we should be playing non-AQ schools in large metro areas so alums across the country get a chance to BC play in their area. Hope the Athletic Dept is reading this blog!

Thomas said...

I'm with Eric. UNLV would be a great away destination. I was out there for opening weekend and the amount of Wisconsin fans was astounding just walking through the casinos and on the streets.

downtown_resident said...

Anywhere in the west. With alumni and students from all over the country, it's pathetic that between 2000 and 2014 we'll play only three regular-season games west of the Mississippi: Stanford (2000), BYU (2005) and USC (2014).

I agree with the prospects mentioned before-- San Diego State, San Jose State and UNLV. TCU and some more games with BYU sound good as well.

chicagofire1871 said...

With respect to the debate between San Jose State and San Diego State. I can attest to the fact that the atmosphere at San Jose is much, much better than in San Diego. The Aztecs play in Qualcomm and the few people that turn out rattle around that stadium. The Spartans in San Jose, come out in greater numbers, so in my estimation, it would make for a better viewing experience. They play in their own, historic stadium near campus.