The prevailing opinion from talking with Craig Bohl yesterday on the status of FBS teams playing FCS teams is the Big Ten Conference is so far alone on that mandate and most likely will remain so. Bohl, who is one of 18 on the Board of Trustees for the American Football Coaches Association that met this week in Phoenix, has some pretty good connections across the country and if his vibe in talking with these folks is that nobody else seems to be in the mood not to schedule FCS teams, then that’s a pretty good source.
The general reasoning behind the Big Ten scheduling model, you could probably assume, is a better TV matchup makes for better ratings, and hence more revenue for the league. And they believe FCS teams don’t make for good TV matchups, which in several cases is true. But does the average viewer/fan out there really care about the difference between Penn State playing Ball State or Youngstown State?
I see it as an issue that was brought up by the Big Ten and will just go away. And I put it under the bigger-fish-to-fry category. Also, this decision was made by athletic directors/administrators and eventually, some coaches in the Big Ten whose teams have no sniff at a national title may come to the conclusion bowl-eligible wins are more important than so-called good TV matchups. If all FBS teams took FCS games out of the equation, you have to wonder if there would be enough bowl eligible teams out there. That’s a lot of victories off the table.
Indiana has to play an FCS team. So should Minnesota, Illinois and Purdue.There are a few others like Iowa and Penn State who are in the midst of being mediocre. And, really, the Big Ten should ask this question for the greater good of college football: What is the right thing to do?