Rating the 2017 Non-Conference Slate: Big 12

Okay, Big 12, you’re up!

  1. Texas (1 legit, 0 FCS): Maryland, San Jose State, @Southern California. This is a fun schedule. You’ve got a Maryland team that won’t be good or anything this year, an increasingly plucky San Jose State, and then we go party like it’s 2005. Sounds good to me.
  2. Oklahoma (1, 0): Texas-El Paso, @Ohio State, Tulane. Well, when your conference only plays 3 OOC games, outliers like having an Ohio State on your schedule count for a lot.
  3. West Virginia (0.75, 1): N-Virginia Tech, East Carolina, Delaware State. I already ragged on the game against VPI being in an NFL stadium, so instead let’s focus on, uh, well I don’t think ECU is supposed to be good this year. Also every time I look up and down this list WVU being here just still seems strange. Can the Big 12 and SEC arrange like a Mizzou-WVU swap? I think that’d work better for everyone.
  4. Texas Tech (0.75, 1): Eastern Washington, Arizona State, @Houston. I’ve gone to the “hey Eastern Washington has a red field!” well too many times, and they lead off with these three in the first four weeks, so it’s likely Kliff Kingsbury will still have a job at the end, so I can’t use that either. Houston could (should?) still be good enough this year to make it interesting, so maybe “likely” is a bit too strong there.
  5. Oklahoma State (0.5, 0): Tulsa, @South Alabama, @Pittsburgh. Huh, scheduling two out-of-conference road games out of three is definitely a thing you can do, but it’s not something you see too often. They do get 5 home conference games this year, but it’s still odd.
  6. Iowa State (0.5, 1): Northern Iowa, Iowa, @Akron. I think the Cyclones will go 3-0 or 0-3 against this slate, setting the tone for the rest of their season. After all, they did lose to UNI last year, and if you can lose to your in-state FCS rival, then you can definitely lose on the road to a MAC team.
  7. Baylor (0.25, 1): Liberty, Texas-San Antonio, @Duke. This is certainly a schedule.
  8. Kansas State (0, 1): Central Arkansas, Charlotte, @Vanderbilt. Depending on how feisty Vandy is this year, this may give K-State some trouble, but this slate should be no trouble. Also, as far as I know this marks the beginning of a stretch that will see none of my extended relations playing for the best football team in the Little Apple. I imagine things will be back to normal in 15 years or so.
  9. Kansas (0, 1): Southeast Missouri State, Central Michigan, @Ohio. Most of what you need to know about Kansas football is that they’ll be doing well to go 2-1 against this slate. If they somehow go 3-0, it will be the first time KU has won 3 games in a season since 2009.
  10. Texas Christian (0, 1): Jackson State, @Arkansas State, Southern Methodist. Between games at Houston, South Alabama, and Akron it’s like the Big 12 is trying to do its best ACC impersonation. But they still can’t come close to the champs.

Up next, we head over to everyone’s favorite mostly-west-of-the-Rockies conference, the Pac-12! See you then.