(USA Today Sports Images)One of the lamentable things about college football is the lack of good non-conference games. There's some, but most teams seem content to play a weak schedule to ensure bowl eligibility and a bump in the rankings before league play.
The Big Ten might not be eliminating all bad non-conference games, but it's getting rid of the worst of them.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported that Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez divulged that the Big Ten has agreed to stop scheduling FCS games. Thank goodness.
“The nonconference schedule in our league is ridiculous,” Alvarez said on WIBA-AM, according to the Journal-Sentinel. “It’s not very appealing…
“So we’ve made an agreement that our future games will all be Division I schools. It will not be FCS schools.”
That is a great step, and hopefully other conferences (and by "other conferences" we mostly mean you, SEC) stop the practice of wasting a precious Saturday afternoon in the fall on FCS opponents. The FCS teams benefit with a large payday, and that's great for the bean counters at those schools. It's not good for anyone else.
It stinks for the season-ticket holders that have to pay for a sham of a game. It's nothing worth watching on television. The FBS team has nothing to gain, because a win is expected but a loss goes down in infamy. And while the FCS team will get enough money to build a new weight room, the most common result is getting pounded by 40 or 50 points, which can't be that enjoyable for those players.
Some Big Ten-Sun Belt game in September might not be a ratings bonanza either, but at least it's better than a parade of FCS opponents.
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