The 2015 Big Ten conference schedule has been released, but there are plenty of teams out there that are still searching for out of conference partners. The amount of teams that need help in finding opponents is actually quite lengthy.
With the playoff format beginning in 2014, teams need to increase their strength of schedule in hopes of being one of the four teams selected to play for a title. Scheduling FCS teams or lousy schools that win a couple of games a season should no longer be the case. Unfortunately, we don't always get the out of conference matchups we would like.
Here's to a change of pace and a look at some of the out of conference meetings that college football fans everywhere would love.
This series was just getting good and now it will come to an end with conference realignment imposing its will. With Rutgers leaving for the Big Ten and Louisville taking its talents to the ACC, the only way these teams will play again is through out of conference play.
Well, make it happen.
Some may expect these two programs to struggle early in their new home, but both are clearly on the rise. Charlie Strong is performing miracles with the Cardinals and has convinced numerous talented kids to come play for the upcoming school. Rutgers has two straight seasons of nine victories and expectations are quickly changing on campus.
The last two meetings were decided by three points or less. This has become a game between the top two schools in the American Athletic Football Conference, and it would be nice to see the momentum a couple more matchups could generate.
Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis wants to make sure the Big Ten gets rewarded for tougher non-conference schedules. The problem is that the only tough non-conference team the Spartans are scheduled to play in 2015 is Oregon. You can cut the check with Western and Central Michigan and mark the 'W' on the calendar.
Head coach David Shaw has proven that Stanford is a legit BCS contender, and will continue to thrive once the playoff format is introduced. Michigan State has been teetering the last couple of seasons and is close to taking that next step. The Spartans will continue to rise if the offense can find a few more playmakers to match the physical defense.
Michigan State and Stanford are two of the most physical teams you will find. They also never get the respect they deserve, but do have the talent to make a run at a national title. This would be an interesting game, especially if you prefer to see a defensive blood bath.
USC and Penn State need to square off a few more times. The last time we saw these two teams was in the 2009 Rose Bowl. The Trojans won the game 38-24, but it was a fun ball game that produced more than 800 total yards and constant scoring.
You would think with all of the history, these two powerhouses would have faced off more than the nine times they have. There isn't a better opportunity than to start a little series beginning in 2015.
USC only has Notre Dame scheduled for out of conference play, which means there is plenty of space available to make this happen. Penn State has boring matchups scheduled with Temple, Buffalo and Central Florida. Yuck. This will be the last season the Nittany Lions are banned from the postseason, and a game against a national contender in the Trojans would give the kids something to play for and be excited about.
We don't see two historic programs square off enough. This would be a game both fan bases would gladly look forward to.
Is it too late for Wisconsin to cancel its meeting against Alabama and schedule Arkansas? Yes? Well, there is still room available to make this meeting happen and please college football fans everywhere.
Arkansas has many vacancies with only Texas Tech on the 2015 schedule, while Wisconsin is putting together a respectable out of conference schedule with the Crimson Tide and Washington State.
Adding Arkansas would help put it over the top.
This meeting would have been interesting simply because it would include Bret Bielema taking on his former team. But the storylines got even juicer once Ohio State president Gordon Gee announced that Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez thought Bielema was a thug.
Oh, this is one those games you would pay to watch closely.
Let's get this over with already.
Gators fans feel like there is a little unfinished business to take care of with the way Urban Meyer left high and dry and then returned a year later. Whether the leave of absence for health reasons was planned or not, there still needs to be a little closure between the two. Heck, even Meyer has a little regret with how things ended.
These two squads need to cross paths sooner or later. Ohio State has a couple of openings with Northern Illinois and Virginia Tech scheduled in 2015, while Florida needs to desperately add another marquee out of conference game along with Florida State. It isn't a strong enough schedule with New Mexico State and Florida Atlantic.
This meeting would finally close the door on the Meyer era in Florida. It would also become the most anticipated matchup in 2015 with both programs back on track and competing for the crystal football.
Let's make it happen.