During the SEC’s spring meetings, one of the hottest topics of conversation for coaches, athletic directors, fans and members of the media was whether or not the nation’s most dominant conference would be moving from its current eight-game schedule to nine games in the relatively near future. The Big Ten had already announced that it would be cutting FCS teams off its teams’ schedules and playing nine conference games, but the decision-makers in the SEC voted it down, for now.
The league’s choice to remain at eight games did not affect merely the SEC. During an interesting (and extremely informative, in our opinion) talk, Florida State senior associate athletics director Monk Bonasorte explains how the SEC’s scheduling affects the Noles’, as well as many other programs nationwide.
“If they go to nine conference games, and you look at everyone one of those schools – South Carolina, Florida – all those schools have a rivalry already,” he said. “Georgia plays Georgia Tech, South Carolina plays Clemson, we play Florida. A lot of those schools are not going to get into a position to want to play another game if they go to a nine-game schedule.
“Then you look at Alabama, they’re in that mode where they want to play those first classical games of the season. We are looking at every option, and that’s pretty much not in our hands. We negotiate with the Chick-Fil-A Bowl or Jerry Jones’ stadium or ESPN, and they’re the ones that get the opponents. We make suggestions who we want to play.
“I can foresee us still trying to work in some pretty big opponents. I know LSU is always big on playing those games, Alabama is big on playing those games. We’re going to continue to push for those games.”
Watch Bonasorte explain the SEC’s ripple effects in the video below.
With the current BCS system for determining a national champion being scrapped in favor of a playoff next season, a team’s strength of schedule is going to be looked at with an ever-scrutinizing eye.
In another portion of the same behind-the-scenes scheduling look, Bonasorte explains how Florida State actually works its schedule out, how its game against Florida affects it and finally how the additions of teams such as Louisville and Notre Dame have made it tougher as well.
[H/T: Coaching Search]