If you've ever wondered what the key ingredients are in making a perfect cupcake schedule, ask a fan from Minnesota, the Southeastern or Big 12 conferences.
Numbers don't lie now, do they?
The site National Championship Issue has completed an amazing study, looking at nonconference schedules the past 10 years. And guess what? Scheduling abuses are greatest among SEC and Big 12 teams, who continue to shy from playing other Bowl Championship Series teams in nonconference games.
Much of this data reinforces the study posted here last December by Map Game Day detailing how SEC teams rarely left the neighborhood to play a game. Georgia, for example, has traveled a total of 358 miles for nonconference games the past 10 years.
So not only do many of these teams refuse to travel, they schedule the lightest of the lightweights for home games. Shame, shame, shame.
College football fans should be outraged. You pay good money to attend games and get a product that continues to be cheapened by a watering down of competition. And don't give us that crap about how difficult your conference schedule is. Today's business model is to go 4-0 in nonconference play and 2-6 in league play. That gets your team a 6-6 record and trip to Shreveport. Yippee!
Let's get to this amazing piece of work posted by National Championship Issue, which cautions that "this is NOT a study of how difficult a team’s non-conf schedule actually was. Instead, this study attempts to measure how difficult a non-conf schedule a team tried to arrange."
Here's the first chart showing the lowest percentages of BCS opponents scheduled for nonconference games the past 10 years. Minnesota, which has played 34 nonleague games in that span, has played only two BCS opponents — Baylor and California. Arkansas is not much better with only four of its 34 nonleague games coming against BCS teams.
This chart details the fewest number of nonconference road games the past 10 years. Of Auburn's 34 nonleague games, only three — USC, Georgia Tech and Syracuse — have been on the road. Notice there are seven SEC teams in the bottom 12.
Here we look at teams that have really sold out, scheduling the most games against I-AA opponents. There are 18 teams charted, and Big 12 teams occupy seven of the slots.
As always, click a chart for an expanded view.