Big Ten to End Games Versus FCS Schools
All this really means is that the Big Ten can no longer go hunting for its powder-puff games in the Division I-AA (now called FCS) ranks. Instead, it will look for smaller fish conference as “The Era of the Super-Conference” is now upon us.
Of course, the true irony of this, is that Wisconsin’s been doing this for years with AD Barry Alvarez looking for cupcakes in what’s left of the Mountain West, Western Athletic Conference and Mid-American Conference.
Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez says Big Ten officials recently agreed to stop scheduling nonconference games against FCS programs.
“The nonconference schedule in our league is ridiculous,” Alvarez said on WIBA-AM in Madison, Wis. “It’s not very appealing …
“So we’ve made an agreement that our future games will all be Division I schools. It will not be FCS schools.”
Alvarez didn’t say when the agreement would take effect.
Wisconsin has one FCS team on its schedule in 2013, a Sept. 7 meeting against Tennessee Tech.
A source told ESPN.com’s Adam Rittenberg the ban could start in 2016, with several FCS games already on the books for 2014 and 2015. But it could be a gradual move with some schools stopping now and some stopping later, the source said.
Frankly the NCAA needs to crack down on this nationally. A common practice among college football programs — especially the big name schools — is to pay a lesser known, FCS program or nearby state school which barely qualifies for D-1 (now called FBS) status to sacrifice a home game just so they can get beat up by the bigger school in the bigger school’s stadium.
In the process, the FCS school gets a million or so bucks, while the FBS school gets to pound someone into the dirt early in the season. At the same time, they’ve probably made about four times the amount they’re paying the FCS school through ticket and apparel sales.
Expect to see more “home and home” contracts between Big Ten schools, but if history is any indication, it won’t be with any big name competition.
“The ghost of Appalachian State” still haunts Michigan after all.