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Gene Smith: Ohio State looking to schedule fewer MAC teams

Gene Smith AP

What’s wrong, Ohio State? Y’all skeered of a little MACtion?

The Buckeyes have played 20 MAC opponents since 1992. According to OSU athletic director Gene Smith, however, you can expect numbers like those to decrease over the foreseeable future. Smith told the Associated Press this week that with college football’s new playoff coming after the end of the 2014 season, Ohio State is looking to alter its scheduling philosophy to reflect a stronger non-conference slate.

More directly, it will mean fewer MAC opponents.

“We’re changing our philosophy because we’re obviously going to move into a playoff structure that I don’t think all of us really understand yet, how the committee’s going to work,” Smith said. “Many of us are assuming it’s going to work similar to the (NCAA tournament) basketball committee, so your non-conference schedule will come into consideration as they evaluate whether or not you’re going to be one of those final four teams.”

A selection committee will choose four teams to participate in the playoff and strength of schedule is expected to be one of the criteria taken into account.

“As we move to 2018 and out, because we’re all set for our games through 2017, we’re looking at a different scheduling format,” Smith said. “So we’ll still play a MAC school on occasion, but not nearly as much as we have in the past.”

The move toward strong out-of-conference match-ups was anticipated once the playoff blueprint was established. Smith didn’t mention any specific upcoming series, but here’s hoping we get more games like the ones Ohio State played against Texas and USC.

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12 Responses to “Gene Smith: Ohio State looking to schedule fewer MAC teams”
  1. bertenheim says: Sep 27, 2012 4:12 PM

    I’d forgotten he was still employed.

  2. takingbovadasmoney says: Sep 27, 2012 4:47 PM

    Yup….OSU’s new schedule will be Washington State, Duke, Kansas, and UAB.

  3. bigbuckeye76 says: Sep 27, 2012 4:51 PM

    Say what you want, I would take WSU, Kansas or Duke over Miami of Ohio, Kent State….Toledo…


    The B1G needs to step up and play better talent across the board…..might take a few beatings, but I bet the conference gets better.

    The SEC can schedule cream puffs all day because their conference schedules are brutal. Not so much in the B1G

  4. foreverlsu says: Sep 27, 2012 5:14 PM

    Agree bigbuckeye76 but I think the SEC will have to step it up too with the scheduling. I’m hearing the SEC will go to a nine game schedule as well soon.

    This should be great for the season ticket holders and the little schools are going to have to find other ways to fund their athletic departments.

    A few years ago, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, formerly USL (University of Slow Learners), threatened to cancel the scheduled game with LSU unless it matched Nebraska’s game guarantee offer of about $750,000. LSU had to match the offer since the game was six months and not enough time to find a replacement opponent. Looks like these game guarantees will level out now that BCS schools will play more BCS schools.

  5. MasMacho says: Sep 27, 2012 5:34 PM

    Yeah, tOSU should stop lining up creampuffs like USC, Texas, the U (well, they are pretty soft actually)… there’s an upcoming series with Oklahoma, Tennessee… I know how terrible of tOSU, lining up weak non-conference schedules year after year.

    But I’m so conflicted here. I wish this guy would just leave tOSU. I wish tOSU would lock it up with Ohio more often. I want more WVU games.

    But just do it next year, when we’re better!

  6. truefootballinsight says: Sep 27, 2012 6:17 PM

    tOSU is not ready to play better opponents. Just out of the MAC

  7. jgater1981 says: Sep 27, 2012 8:47 PM

    It looks like they’re following in Notre Dame’s shoes and dropping the weak links from their schedule.

  8. sparky151 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:20 PM

    OSU has tried in recent years to schedule good teams from power conferences. Cal was supposed to be this year’s credible non-conference opponent.

    OSU didn’t play in-state schools for more than 70 years until the legislature forced them to. Miami was this year’s in-state opponent, with UCF and UAB scheduled as patsies, though they played well.

    I’d expect OSU to still play in-state opponents, at least UC, and probably some of the weaker teams from power conferences. Schedule Kansas or Kentucky and hope they pull an upset or two in their conference season.

  9. dlte says: Sep 28, 2012 2:48 AM

    I think some home and homes with Kentucky and West Virginia, Pitt, and maybe Notre Dame would be awesome. Then they could still have the regional games but with higher caliber opponents. We should schedule Boise State as soon as possible, too. I would love to play them (NOT on the smurf turf, that field is a disgrace).

  10. southernpatriots says: Sep 28, 2012 4:51 AM

    I will be speaking with the AAD in the Athletic Department at LSU in a few days as soon as his schedule allows. He is responsible for scheduling Oregon last season at the Cowboy Classic and TCU next season there. He also scheduled Washington which just beat Stanford which beat USC.

    Oklahoma is scheduled in 2017 and 2018. We have been encouraging him to schedule Michigan home and home, night games, and a few other teams which have openings at this time. This ups the quality of opponents from Div. II or FCS to Div.I top 25, and sometimes top10 or 5.

    Most of these games are scheduled years in advance by the assistant or associate athletic directors at universities. They cannot know if the team will be ranked #2 as last year’s Oregon team was or even if the team will be ranked, though recent history would indicate if they generally have a higher quality program, which Oregon, TCU, Oklahoma, and teams of that nature do.

    Most fans really want better quality opponents for their teams. Div. II schools are really dependent upon the major programs for operating funds for their programs. When the major football powers no longer schedule these cream puffs in a couple more years when SOS (strength of schedule) becomes even more of a factor in rankings for the play off system, Div. II and FCS football programs will really suffer economically. Some may have to close.

  11. liberacelives says: Sep 28, 2012 11:14 AM

    Ben Kercheval is the Perez Hilton of cfb bloggers. Bitchy, catty, fluffy and always lacking critical analysis. This is the equivalent of the Penny Saver of college football news.

  12. abrellbama says: Sep 28, 2012 2:01 PM

    The Big10 is so weak, like the Pac12, they have to schedule tougher OOC teams. That is why Alabama refused a h2h with Wisconsin and only wanted 1 game. We cannot be tied up for 2 years to a team that may or may not be good that year and wind up hurting our SOS. Bama has a tough schedule every year with the SEC teams so they play 1 marque team and 3 cupcakes. I want them to move to a 9 conference game schedule and play 1 marque team and 2 cupcakes. That would help Bama’s SOS. Just like the Big10 has to improve their SOS schedules to have a chance to make the playoffs and that is why Ohio State is restructuring.

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