Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nebraska vs. Boise State: Scheduling I Can Believe In

Tom Shatel reported today that the Huskers are in talks to play Boise State, though perhaps not in 2011.  Boise State is searching for a BCS conference opponent to visit in 2011 on the condition that the game pay the Broncos $1 million for traveling, but haven't found a taker yet.

In my mind, the only question about playing Boise is the money.  2011 might not be the best fit for Nebraska, as the other non-conference games are Fresno State, Washington, and a road game at Wyoming.  But if 2011 doesn't fit, I don't know when it will.  Here's Nebraska's upcoming schedules:

2010: Western Kentucky, Idaho, @Washington, South Dakota State
2011: TBA, Fresno State, Washington, @Wyoming
2012: Southern Miss, @UCLA, TBA, TBA
2013: Wyoming, @Southern Miss, UCLA, TBA
2014: TBA, TBA, @Fresno State, Miami-Florida
2015: TBA, TBA, @Miami-Florida, Southern Miss
2016: Fresno State, Tennessee, Wyoming, TBA
2017: TBA, @Tennessee, TBA, TBA

Ideally, Nebraska would find a way to drop Idaho or South Dakota State next season to play Boise, but that's probably not going to happen without a complicated agreement can be worked out between four or more schools to swap games.  But if Nebraska is hesitant to play both Boise State and another prominent non-BCS school in the same season, it might not happen until 2017.

Personally, I don't see a huge issue with playing both Boise and either Southern Miss or Fresno State.  Those matchups might have to wait until 2014 and 2015.  Nobody will criticize Nebraska for playing a 1-AA team in those seasons with Fresno, Miami, and Boise filling out the schedule.

Sammy Vegas over at DoubleExtraPoint doesn't want the Huskers playing on the SmurfTurf in Boise for recruiting reasons.  I'm not so concerned about that, though if Nebraska could get a neutral site game in Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, or Chicago, so much the better for fans.  I'm not diminishing the desire to play around the country so that potential players know that they'll be coming to their neck of the woods; I just think that the Huskers shouldn't be afraid to play in Boise.

But with all due respect to the fine folks in Boise, I'd rather play in Boise in September than around New Years.

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