Playing Top 25 non conference opponents

I thought it might be interesting to see which of the BCS Conferences have the most teams playing 2012 Preseason Top 25 opponents outside of their conferences.  For our purposes, any team who appears on the Top 25 list of any of four preseason polls qualifies as a Top 25 non-conference opponent.  The ACC has the most Top 25 non-conference teams on their schedule with 11.  The Big 12 has the least with 1.  The Pac-12 and the SEC each have 7 teams scheduled and the Big Ten has 5.  2 teams have 2 Top 25 non conference teams on their schedule:  Michigan and Clemson.

This could be distorted by the number of Top 25 teams within each conference.  The SEC has 7, the Big Ten and Big 12 have 5 each, the ACC has four and the Pac-12 has 3.  Even though South Florida and Louisville from the Big East are on some preseason lists, it is hard to know how to treat them in the BCS discussion.  Maybe Boise State will add a little fire to the Big East.  Conference realignment seems to be most kind to the Big 12 this year with new members TCU and West Virginia both appearing in the preseason rankings.  In the long run, new SEC members Missouri and Texas A&M should be candidates for high positions.  It is not likely that Syracuse or Pitt will do a great deal for the ACC.  Both the Sun Belt and Conference USA each play 12 Top 25 teams.

While our focus is on the Top 25, I know that the Illinois Fighting Illini fans are looking forward to September 15, when the Buccaneers of Charleston Southern come to Memorial Stadium.  The Buccaneers are coming off of an 0-11 season with loses to UCF (62-0) and FSU (62-10).  The Illini fans may think sophomore running back Donovonn Young is the returned version of Rashard Mendenhall.  Well, let’s all have some fun as the 2012 season is almost here.


Playing Top 25 non conference opponents — 2 Comments

  1. Doesn’t seem like you get too many comments, so I’ll hazard one. Using Preseason polls is stupid. There. Point blank. Hope your feelings aren’t hurt. Preseason polls carry no weight in reality, they are the most subjective of all the subjective rankings in college football (and they are ALL subjective and usually based on media needs rather than objective facts nowadays….just the way the industry has migrated). For example, if you looked at national champion (what is it 30, 40?) Alabama’s schedule last year, it played a grand total of five teams with a winning record. That’s it. End of story. World’s easiest schedule. But if you look at Preseason polls or post-season results, it made the Crimson Tide look much better than they were (as a team now, the defense was flat out spectacular). Here’s the low down: the press will use any ammunition to achieve the ultimate end result of boosting ratings for their “employer collective.” That odd term means the reigning big dog, ESPN, and the assembly of big print and mostly big TV. All of these media people have one goal: to sell the most advertising to the most gullible audience. Why do you think LSU-Bama got a rematch? By the time January rolls around, schools in Oklahoma State, Texas and Stanford are all putting football behind them and getting heavily into other sports, especially big time NCAA basketball. Not so in Alabama at all, and not so this year at LSU. Nationally though, it was the first time the Big Game lost ratings. The nation was turned off by a non-conference champ getting a rematch with a team that had already whooped it in what may have been the worst SEC game in history. It was without doubt the worst national championship game in history (seconded ironically by the Colt McCoyless monstrosity that Bama played in last BCS time). But it perpetuated the Preseason rankings boondoggle. Nothing is more meaningless or more hyped than FBS NCAA preseason rankings. Nothing in all of sports.