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On Scheduling

King Kaufman is unhappy with yesterday's matchups:

The top-25 teams play roughly 100 nonconference games, and they managed to schedule five against each other, one-tenth of what they could have scheduled.

The math is right, if a little misleading. After all, juxtaposing 100 (the number of nonconference scheduling oportunities) with 5 (the number of games) is dirty pool - each game has two Top 25 teams, filling 10 of the 100 chances to play.

There's also the problem, briefly addressed, of not knowing who will be good every year. In a given year FSU-Alabama or Miami-Oklahoma could be Top 10 matchups, but not in 2007. If you expand the field to all BCS teams and Notre Dame, the numbers don't seem that unreasonable. The ACC, for example scheduled 22 of 36 games (61%) against such foes. Things are getting better on the scheduling front, not worse.

Where Kaufman goes wrong, however, is with this statement:

That college football isn't even interested in figuring out a way to make that kind of game happen more often is a bigger failing than its absurd system of crowning a champion every year.

Actually, it's the same failing. When one loss in the third week of the season can eliminate you from championship contention - but not necessarily the team down the road who was ranked higher in the preseason - you have a massive incentive not go out and schedule a Top 25 team. No strength of schedule component in a math formula somewhere is going to change that, and with the costs this high, no one's going to take a chance. Revamp the BCS, and the good college football games will follow.