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.

Regional games
New Hampshire
Rhode Island

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.

Catholic games

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
Holy Cross
Central Connecticut State
Sacred Heart
San Diego
St. Francis

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. 


mod34b said...

Once UConn and UMass return to their rightful FCS level, we might consider scheduling a game with those programs too.

Sal said...

I think Georgetown, Nova, Fordham, and New Hampshire are the ideal four, with Holy Cross obviously back in the mix now that they're moving back to max. scholarships. We have a great history with Gtown, Fordham, and the Cross, while Nova (also Catholic)/UNH represent two of the stronger northeast-FCS schools. Stony Brook is up there as well in terms of stronger northeast FCS programs, so I wouldn't mind seeing them on the schedule either (if any of the top 5 are out, of course). I think the point, like ATL said, is to keep it as geographically/historically/religiously relevant as possible. All besides Georgetown are in the Northeast, but the Jesuit/history factor is there for the Hoyas.

Coast said...

Why in the world is playing an FCS school a necessary evil? Why can't we at least play FBS schools?

The younger generation does not care one lick about Maine, New Hampshire, or Rhode Island. They sure as you-know-what won't care for games against Bryant, Sacred Heart, or St. Francis.

I would LOVE a series against UConn. I don't know why UMass is off the table simply because they are FBS now.

I would much rather play a basement AQ school than an FCS school. And if this is about selling tickets and making money at a home game, please tell me exactly how much we stand to make on a home game against some New England also-ran versus a home-and-home against a school with a name.