Monday, March 04, 2013
Which FCS teams should BC play?
Playing an FCS team is a necessary evil of big time college football. The financial incentives are too strong not to play one. It is also nothing new for BC fans as we played Holy Cross long after they stopped giving scholarships and we instituted the "good for New England" game early in TOB's tenure. The problem of late is the type of FCS team we are playing. You can mask some games under the guise of geography or history, but the Weber States of the world are not going to fool or excite the most passionate BC fan. There are only a handful of FCS schools BC should play and I've grouped them for this purpose into two categories.
Playing regional opponents was the intent of the good for New England game. Because Northeastern dropped football and UMass and UConn jumped to FBS, there are fewer options in this category. But that doesn't mean we should stop playing these teams. 75% of the time, these three teams should be available. BC doesn't offer the big pay day they might get elsewhere, but that is somewhat offset by the travel costs. I don't think New England is ever going to become a hotbed of football, but it is important that these schools maintain healthy, scholarship-supported FCS-level programs. Coaches from those programs will coach at our clinics and keep football relevant in the region and among high school. Regional games are good for both sides.
We a quick to remind the media that we are the only other Catholic school playing FBS football. It is part of our identity. Therefore playing other Catholic schools should be important to us. BC has long used football as a tool to associate with like-minded Universities (think Northwestern, Stanford, etc.). Playing other Catholic schools reinforces that idea. Plus we have a football history with these programs.
Candidates who move up to the full allotment of scholarships
Central Connecticut State
BC cannot count an FCS win towards bowl eligibility if the school does not offer a full allotment of FCS-level scholarships. That leaves out the Ivy League and puts the future games with Rhode Island in jeopardy. But all the schools listed above have explored using 63 football scholarships. If any do make the commitment we should support them under the same reasoning I stated before. I don't think Bryant or St. Francis will excite many people, but that is the right thing to do. Playing Holy Cross and Georgetown on a regular basis would be ideal.