Wouldn’t it be fun to see the Mad Hatter’s stingy LSU defense battle it out with Rich Rod’s run-first spread offense at Arizona? Would you tune in to see USC versus USC, Steve against Steve? That would be Sarkisian’s Southern Cal Trojans taking on Spurrier’s South Carolina Gamecocks. How about a rematch of the 2010 BCS championship game – Oregon vs Auburn. Or maybe the game a lot of so-called experts were expecting at the very end of last season – Oregon vs Alabama?
Well, forget it. Ain’t gonna happen.
In the 2014 college football season, there was not even one match-up of teams from the Southeastern Conference and the Pac-12. None in the regular season, and none in the bowls. Not a single one!
In 2015 there is one game between the two conferences, and purists might suggest it doesn’t even count. On September 5, 2015 at 8 p.m. in Houston, Texas, Arizona State of the Pac-12 will play the SEC’s Texas A&M. It’s the only match-up of the season, and A&M isn’t exactly a traditional, long-standing member of the SEC, having just joined the conference in 2012.
So what gives? Can’t blame geography. There are Pac-12 vs ACC games on the schedule, and the Atlantic Coast is further from the West Coast than the Southest is.
Here’s the problem: Everybody’s too busy playing FCS schools! There are 26 teams in the two conferences combined, and 22 of them play at least one game against an FCS affiliate in 2015. Kentucky, shamefully, plays two! (The four teams that have not scheduled an FCS opponent are all in the Pac-12: Stanford, USC, UCLA and Utah.)
When will the powers-that-be address this ridiculousness? The good news is that there’s an undercurrent suggesting that change may be on its way.
But we know how slowly the wheels often move.