A Virginia Tech Perspective on the #ACC Football Conference Schedule Decision


Greetings, Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) fans.

Aye – the offseason – you know this is a painful time 😉 After all, the first college football game isn’t for another 100 days, eh? Site owner, Jeff Fann (@TalkinACCSports), and I are here to help the time go a little faster. We hope you have enjoyed our ACC podcast (click here to subscribe to it in iTunes) and the blogging on the site.

Site owner, Jeff Fann, blogged about the ACC’s recent decision to have the conference remain at an eight game conference schedule. In 2017, all ACC schools will also be required to schedule a game against a member of the SEC, Big Ten, Big 12 or Pac-12 (h/t @DanWolken). BYU will not count as a power conference game (h/t @BCInterruption).

A few thoughts on this decision announced by ACC Commissioner, John Swofford:

  • Virginia Tech, Clemson, and Florida State all wanted an eight game ACC conference schedule – and Swofford is clearly listening to the football schools. This is a good thing.
  • The SEC went to an eight game conference schedule – why should the ACC do anything different? The name of the game is to get as many of your teams as possible in the national championship playoff picture – and bowl eligible. Why set up a series of games in the conference where teams have the ability to knock each other off – and out of contention? Of course, the fan in me wants to see ACC schools schedule the best teams – and have the strongest schedule – but you gotta do – what you have to do – schedule for success.
  • I do not like the decision by the conference on BYU – and Virginia is going to bear the brunt of that decision when the Hoos go to Provo, UT on September 20, 2014 – and lose by 21 or more points. Here’s what Paul Myerberg from USA Today had to say about this decision:
  • Swofford should have gone one step further – and stated that the ACC’s position is such that it does not play a conference opponent the week before a rivalry game.

Let’s take a long-term look on how this impacts Virginia Tech. Here is this year’s football schedule – and here are the future football schedules for Virginia Tech – and lets take a look specifically at the non-conference opponents and the Notre Dame game for the Hokies (and we’ll start three years earlier than the 2017 requirement from the ACC):

  • 2014-2015 – William and Mary (H), Ohio State (A), East Carolina (H), Western Michigan (H)
  • 2015-2016 – Ohio State (H), Furman (H), Purdue (A), East Carolina (A)
  • 2016-2017 – Liberty (H), Tennessee (H – Bristol), East Carolina (H), Notre Dame
  • 2017-2018 – Delaware (H), East Carolina (A), Old Dominion (H), and David Teel of the Newport News, VA Daily Press reports that a game with West Virginia at Redskins Stadium in Washington, DC is one that could work (h/t @DavidTeelatDP)
  • 2018-2019 – William and Mary (H), Old Dominion (A), East Carolina (H), and we need an opponent from the Big 12, Big 10, SEC, or Pac-12 – could we try to move the 2015 game with Purdue in this slot?
  • 2019-2020 – Charlotte (H), Old Dominion (H), Wisconsin (A), East Carolina (A)
  • 2020-2021 – Liberty (H), Wisconsin (H), Michigan (A), East Carolina (H)
  • 2021-2022 – Richmond (H), West Virginia (A), Michigan (H)
  • 2022-2023 – Penn State (H), West Virginia (H), Old Dominion (A)
  • 2023-2024 – Purdue (H), Penn State (A), Old Dominion (H)

As you can see above, Virginia Tech is well-positioned to meet the requirements of playing a power conference opponent over the next decade. In five of the next ten years, Virginia Tech is playing at least two power conference opponents – and some great non-power conference series with Conference USA powers, Old Dominion and East Carolina. Former Athletic Director, Jim Weaver, did a terrific job scheduling future opponents during his final years on the job. And the best part is that these are winnable games for the Hokies.

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