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Matt Hayes
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Ranking the nonconference schedules: Big 12
Posted: June 18, 2008

Matt Hayes continues his look at the BCS non-conference schedules. Last week, he analyzed the non-conference schedules in the ACC, Big East and SEC. Up today: the Big 12. Coming Thursday: Big Ten. Coming Friday: Pac-10.

Big 12

1. Colorado: Colorado State (in Denver), Eastern Washington, West Virginia, at Florida State
2. Oklahoma: Tennessee-Chattanooga, Cincinnati, at Washington, TCU
3. Baylor: Wake Forest, Northwestern State, Washington State, at Connecticut
4. Texas A&M;: Arkansas State, at New Mexico, Miami, Army
5. Nebraska: Western Michigan, San Jose State, New Mexico State, Virginia Tech
6. Texas: Florida Atlantic, at UTEP, Arkansas, Rice
7. Missouri: Illinois (in St. Louis), Southeast Missouri State, Nevada, Buffalo
8. Oklahoma State: Washington State (in Seattle), Houston, Missouri State, Troy
9. Iowa State: South Dakota State, Kent State, at Iowa, at UNLV
10. Kansas State: North Texas, Montana State, at Louisville, Louisiana-Lafayette
11. Kansas: Florida International, Louisiana Tech, at South Florida, Sam Houston State
12. Texas Tech: Eastern Washington, at Nevada, SMU, Massachusetts

Quick observations:

• My kingdom for more guys like Dave Plati. Colorado's associate athletic director/schedule-maker gives college football nuts reason to be hopeful: Someone actually does get it when scheduling non-con games. Year in and out, CU is among the nation's best in non-con games.

• I love Mike Leach; his wacky personality and fun-as-all-get-out offense is refreshing. But UMass and Eastern Washington? And no BCS schools? You've just got to do better than that. I mean, this schedule makes Kansas look like CU.

• Speaking of Kansas, welcome to the world of non-con scheduling, Jayhawks. Almost. The game at South Florida will be tough; Raymond James Stadium quickly is turning into a pit when home games are sold out (and this one will be). Then there are two softies and the scrimmage against Sammy State. Riveting.

• Look, I'm OK with Championship Subdivision (I-AA) teams on the schedule -- as long as there's only one, and the remaining games are competitive. I give you Oklahoma: The Cincy game will be tough (much tougher than most think), and the road game at Washington is testy simply because of the long trip. And TCU? See: 2005.

Top five games: Missouri vs. Illinois; West Virginia at Colorado; Cincinnati at Oklahoma, Arkansas at Texas; Miami at Texas A&M.;

Bottom five games: Sam Houston State at Kansas; Southeast Missouri State at Missouri; Missouri State at Oklahoma State; South Dakota State at Iowa State; UMass at Texas Tech.

Games against BCS schools: 15 (out of 48 possible): 31 percent.

Games against Championship Subdivision (formerly I-AA) schools: 10 (out of 33 possible remaining): 30 percent.

Matt Hayes is a writer for Sporting News. E-mail him at

Sporting news - YourTurn   SPEAK OUT ON THIS ARTICLE

LadyVolsLover on Wed Jun 18, 2008 03:06 pm
What a disgrace. It's hard to imagine fans even showing up for these games. Just for the record, Matt, what's the total pay-out bribe to all these patsies?
Very Puzzling
theazsundvltch@yahoo.comBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 04:05 pm
From just looking at this list of ranked, non-conference schedules of the Big 12, I find it very puzzling, and yet to an extent, some of it makes perfect sense. Ranking Colorado in the #1 position, considering they have the likes of the WV Moutaineers (who played OU in the Fiesta Bowl this last year)along with highly skeptical FSU, is the logical choice for the Big 12 Team with the toughest schedule. While not having Coach Rodriguez with the Moutaineers, nor having particular key starters from last year's squad, poses a bit of vulernability for the '08 team, Pat White and Noel Divine (The Dynamic Duo) will be more than enough to make up for this as WV beats a young CU team that's still trying to find themselves. The OU schedule isn't any easier with the likes of TCU who beat OU a couple of years ago, not to mention, an up and coming Husky team that's hungry for some Scooby-Snacks. However, I'm having serious trouble understanding how Texas A/M's schedule is harder than Nebraska's or Missouri's. Is there something that I've missed or overlooked with A/M or Miami? Did "The" Miami University, fire Coach Shannon, only to rehire fomer Hurricane great, Coach Johnson? The fact is that Miami is still rebuilding and in transition, and yes, so are the Aggies, but to have McGee along with Jevorskie Lane, and having this game in College Station, I don't, for the life of me, understand how the A/M schedule is tougher than some of the lower ranked schedules.
LVL throws stone, finds own glass house shattered
robertogravezBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 04:15 pm
LadyVolsLover wrote:
What a disgrace. It's hard to imagine fans even showing up for these games. Just for the record, Matt, what's the total pay-out bribe to all these patsies?

My guess is the bribe was about half of what the SEC paid for these games:

Western Illinois
UL-Monroe 3x
Georgia Southern
Louisiana Tech
UAB 2x
Tulane 2x
Central Michigan
Norfolk State
SE Louisiana
Western Kentucky 2x
Middle Tennessee 2x
North Texas
Northern Illinois
Arkansas State
The Citadel

Thumbs Down
Friends of Clyde on Wed Jun 18, 2008 04:33 pm
Mike Leach has improved every aspect of Tech football except scheduling. Tech scheduled Ohio State, Penn State, Georgia, Arizona State, Tennessee, NC State and Ole Miss before Mike Leach replaced Spike Dykes. I kinda miss losing those games Sad
LVL at it again...
rmb421Blog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 04:44 pm
LVL likes to flame every chance he gets....then he'll go to SEC threads and claim he doesn't post on threads that don't concern the SEC.
He has no class and you're best off ignoring him altogether.
IcemanParsonsBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 05:38 pm
Five days before Oklahoma played TCU in 2005, Katrina hit down here in Mississippi and kinda ruined the start of football season for us. The OU-TCU game was the first thing I got to see on over the air TV here, as the local station went back on the air just before gametime. And then, the game happened and I wished I hadn't seen it at all.

But that was then. Really, the Sooners will have a good measure of just how good they are after this year's non-conference schedule. That's as it should be.

Boomer Sooner!
shytnikBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 06:06 pm
OU also had a return game with Middle Tennessee scheduled (not that it's much better), but when they backed out of it at the last minute, OU tried to get a D-1 school, however no one was willing and available. I'm not saying many other large schools wouldn't have given it a try had they not already had a game scheduled. Castiglione said most of the people he called asked him why in the world they would want to play OU. I don't like the 1-AA game either, but at least Tennessee-Chattanooga stepped up and gave us a game on the schedule, which counts for slightly more than an open date.

Boomer Sooner!
NOT a bad Game
dmccoyBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 06:09 pm
SDSU and Iowa State. This is a win-win for me. If Iowa State loses, my home state gets its first win against a FBS/Div IA school. If the Cyclones win, that means the Jackrabbits lose, which is always good for a USD student. Go 'Yotes!
Why we're not football coaches
LifeOverRace on Wed Jun 18, 2008 06:48 pm
Mr. Hayes,

FYI: Tech's Schedule ,

1. Tulsa backed out and was replaced by EWash after LSU refused a home and home.

2. Also, bowl games bring recruits, not early season losses. You use the BCS rules to your advantage.

3. EWash and UMass may be tougher than Tulsa...these are very risky games....ask Michigan.

Lindy's 2008 FCS Pre-season Poll
1. Appalachian State
2. North Dakota State
3. James Madison
4. UMass
5. Montana
6. Richmond
7. Eastern Washington
8. McNeese State
9. Delaware
10. New Hampshire
Dave Plati deserves the kudos
cuatthegame.comBlog on Wed Jun 18, 2008 07:03 pm
"My kingdom for more guys like Dave Plati. Colorado's associate athletic director/schedule-maker gives college football nuts reason to be hopeful: Someone actually does get it when scheduling non-con games. Year in and out, CU is among the nation's best in non-con games."

Well stated, Matt. The Buffs are always in the top ten in the nation in one category - tough scheduling. When North Carolina backed out of a home-and-home for the next two seasons, who did the Buffs pick up? A top ten team in West Virginia. For all those who insist that they can't get a BCS team to sign a contract - call Dave Plati. It can be done if a school is willing to take on some risks.

Outside the BCS, which two schools have voiced the most complaints about not being able to play a BCS opponent? Probably Hawaii and Fresno Sate. CU has a four game contract with Hawaii coming up, and a three game contract with Fresno State coming up.

If you are looking for fun reading during the season, check out Dave Plati's weekly media release ( he's one of the best in the business.

Go Buffs!
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