Monday, February 14, 2011

Scheduling Update for 2011 Football Season

We're close to halfway completed with conference schedules for the 2011 football season.
  • The ACC, Big East, WAC, MAC, MWC and Sun Belt schedules should be released over the next two months.  The ACC and Big East before the others because they tend to provide those conferences some form of priority since they get top billing for Thursday night games and, in the Big East's case, top choice for Friday night games as well.  Edit: ACC schedule was released litterally seconds after this post was published.
  • Of the list above, only the MWC is not actively waiting for ESPN to pick games.  The MWC schedule does take longer because they set all game times and television outlets before the season starts with Versus, CBS College and the mtn.
  • C-USA released its schedule last week and did not move any games (yet) to Thursdays, Sunday or Monday of Labor Day weekend, or to Black Friday.  Now that the framework of the schedule is in place and that the conference is not doing Tuesday, Wednesday or Friday night games for television (Black Friday excluded), expect Fox and CBS College to start looking to pre-select games to move to weeknights.  I am under the impression that Fox and CBS College will set aside game times for C-USA, but they will now select their games on a 12 day basis.
  • Notre Dame, Navy and Army set their games times by May 1st.  Now that NBC is actively working with other Comcast properties like Versus, it will be interesting to see if a Notre Dame home game ends up on Versus.  The contract between ND and NBC does allow for games to air on pay television.
  • The Big 12 likely has some scheduling alterations being discussed now that they lack a conference championship game.  The Red River Rivalry is not moving off its early October date and the Lone Star Showdown is likely to remain a Thanksgiving night game, but other games are available to move either to Thursday nights or to Championship Saturday.  Expect those moves to happen after the ACC and Big East schedules are settled.
  • The Pac-12 moved three games to Thursdays when they released their schedule last fall.  Television assignments for several ABC/ESPN games will be known around May 1st, FSN & Versus selections around June 1st.
  • Much like previous years, some Big Ten game times will be selected in mid-April when schools set their game times for homecoming dates.
  • The majority of non-conference schedules are completed, and some are just waiting for the ink to dry, like TCU's.  Some games could move dates in the interest of television. 
See the list on the right hand side of the page for more information on 2011 college football schedules.

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