The ACC released their 2016 Football schedule earlier this week. As usual there are some things to like about it and some things that left our head scratching. Let’s start with the positive. We’ll hit the things we don’t care for in a day or two.
Here are 5 things to like about the ACC 2016 Football Schedule.
1) Florida State vs Ole Miss (September 5th, 2016 8PM ) Labor Day
That an ACC team or sometimes teams is featured exclusively with no competition on Labor Day prime time in a marquee game is great exposure for the ACC team playing in it and the conference. This game usually achieves huge ratings, and is normally one of the most high profile games of the first weekend of college football.
This Labor day Florida State and Ole Miss faceoff in a highly anticipated game, between two teams that could contend for a playoff spot. Great move by the ACC locking up this day.
2) Clemson vs Florida State (October 29, 2016) with BYEs a week before.
Put your marquee ACC game of the year between your two best programs near the end of year, with likely playoff implications. I like it ACC. Throw in BYE weeks for both teams the week before, and let the hype build for 2 weeks.
3) Open Dates in the Middle of the Season
In a 14 team league it can be difficult to coordinate BYE weeks. Have it too early, and it’s a waste. Have it too late, and your team could be beat up before you ever get to it. Preferably you want your BYE weeks in the middle of the season. The ACC did a good job managing this.
NC State and Miami are the only ACC schools without their BYE week in the month of October. Both of theirs are the last week of September.
The majority of ACC schools (10) have their BYE week on October 15, 22, or 29th. That’s probably about as well as you could hope for.
4) Emphasis on Rivalry Weekend.
The ACC/SEC final weekend setup has been a traditional date for Clemson/South Carolina, FSU/UF, Georgia Tech/Georgia. When Louisville was added to the ACC, their game with Kentucky was moved to the end of the regular season. That’s worked out pretty well as the ACC has went 7-1 the last two years in these games, giving the ACC a nice boost at the end of the year.
In addition, Virginia Tech and Virginia are the final weekend as is UNC and NC State which is being played on Friday. Friday games are hit or miss, but Friday after Thanksgiving is a good football day. I think the final weekend setup concentrating on rivalry weekend is a good move.
5) ACC teams figuring out how to schedule OOC to their level.
Take a look at each ACC team, and by and large ACC teams didn’t schedule beyond their means. I don’t count if Notre Dame is on your schedule, because that is the ACC and Notre Dame scheduling agreement. Florida State and Clemson can play with anyone in America, and have Ole Miss and Auburn in addition to their rivalry games.
Not counting Notre Dame Syracuse, Boston College, NC State, and Wake Forest didn’t schedule anyone they can’t compete with. UNC has improved enough that playing Georgia is an opportunity to gain national respect, and not a sure loss.
In fact the only team that scheduled beyond their reach was notorious over scheduler Virginia who for some reason think playing at Oregon is a good idea.