Nebraska will have no problem paying big BCS opponents

By Marc Hudgens  |   Monday, August 18, 2008  |  Comments( 1 )

Nebraska Cornhuskers
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Last week, Tom Shatel of the Omaha (Neb.) World-Herald quilled a column about the Huskers’ goal of scheduling respectable BCS opponents for their future nonconference slate. The reason for that was simple: The Nebraska brass does not like playing weaker foes.

“(Head coach) Bo (Pelini), Coach (athletic director Tom) Osborne and myself are in agreement that we want to play the best schedule possible,” assistant athletic director of football operations Jeff Jamrog said. “There are some non-BCS teams that I've contacted that want home and home. One is BYU.”

However, there are two big incentives for Nebraska to not go this route. First, the strength of schedule has been removed from BCS ranking formulas. Second, these bigger opponents will naturally want a home-and-home series, which means the bigger the foe, the more the Huskers must pay for them to visit Lincoln.

In these trying times, the financial aspect of football plays an increasingly larger role. Just the meteoric rise in fuel costs is a major consideration when traveling to another team’s venue. But when you take other factors into consideration, the hesitancy in scheduling bigger opponents should lessen.

The cost will likely run anywhere between $750,000 and $1.5 million per game, depending on the opponent. But these marquee games will also bolster more income via better television contracts (ESPN prime time or ABC will likely pay more than, say, Fox Sports Net), ticket sales and so forth. So, you can’t really look at the cost alone, because the influx of cash will also increase.

There won’t be any kind of financial problem for Nebraska in scheduling bigger opponents. If anything, Jamrog, Osborne and Pelini won’t let that stand in their way.

“We want to play those games,” Pelini said. “I don't want to shy away from anyone.”
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About Marc Hudgens

Marc Hudgens has been with RealFootball365 since 2007, covering college football, specifically Clemson and Oregon. He also writes for covering the ACC. He enjoys the acidic wit of Hunter S. Thompson, is a freelance graphic designer and has written several screenplays. He...
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