With so much controversy over how good schools like Boise State and TCU are compared with the powerhouses in the SEC and Big Ten, it would be nice to see the Broncos and Horned Frogs play or 9 tough games in a season as opposed to 1 or 2 tough games per season. SEC schools don’t even need to schedule any tough non-conference opponents anymore to have a strength of schedule near the top yet most of them have at least one difficult non-conference game. For 3 of them, it’s an in-state rival in the ACC to finish the season.
Anyway, Boise State will be visiting Atlanta to play the Georgia Bulldogs to start the 2011 season. Both teams will likely be preseason top 10 or 15 and it should be an exciting way to start the season. This will be in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game at the Georgia Dome so it’s technically a neutral site game, but UGA is 70 miles away while Boise is over 2,000 miles away. After that game, Boise State plays a bunch of weak to mediocre teams in the MWC and WAC while Georgia has to face the likes of Georgia Tech and 7 formidable SEC opponents (Vanderbilt). With the Broncos moving the the MWC, that means they will play TCU in the regular season and they do have Nevada on the non-conference schedule so it’s probably not as weak a schedule as this year. TCU, meanwhile, has middle-of-the-pack Big 12 schools Baylor and Texas Tech on it’s non-conference schedule. So we are moving toward more balanced scheduling between teams of different conferences but still a long way away from any non-AQ school getting as much respect as a BCS conference school with an equal record.
Back when I was a Georgia fan, I remember myself and my dad complaining about how they paid 2 or 3 really weak schools to come to Athens to lose by 40 points. It just wasn’t as exciting, and I still wish we would see more ACC-Big Ten or SEC-Big Ten or PacTen-Big 12 games in the regular season, but now that Boise, TCU, and Utah have been consistently ranked highly with their weak schedules, I’m starting to change my mind on all of this. Scheduling weak teams, and scattering such games throughout the season to give the team a little bit of a break from the conference grind, may be smart. Georgia has two weak teams on the 2011 schedule – Coastal Carolina in week 3 and New Mexico State in week 10 – and then Georgia Tech in week 14 as always.