I knew supply and demand would be good for something.

The Wall Street Journal spots a potentially happy trend.

… College football’s non-conference season is about to start shrinking. Both the Big 12 and Big Ten conferences are considering increasing their conference schedules from eight games to nine in the near future. Essentially, this means one more week of Wisconsin playing a team that’s closer to the caliber of Penn State, whom the Badgers miss on the Big Ten schedule this season, and one fewer matchup against Austin Peay.

Schools and conferences are also slowly coming around to the idea that the money they can earn from these big games may be worth the risk of hanging an early loss on the team.

One reason is the success of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff, a neutral-site showcase game in Atlanta that has featured Alabama in the past two years. Last year the game sold out in July and paid out $2.3 million per team…

And that’s what really may be driving this train.  The math for high-profile games is getting more attractive.

… The economics of non-conference games are starting to favor tougher scheduling. The Chick-fil-A Kickoff game pays out $2 million to $2.5 million per team, which is more than several bowl games. Before the expansion to a 12-game schedule, the typical amount that major-conference teams paid to visiting smaller-conference teams was $450,000 to $550,000. Today, the going rate has soared to the neighborhood of $1 million.

Good for us big school fans… but at some point somebody’s going to notice that the smaller schools are going to take a financial hit from it.

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16 Comments

Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

16 responses to “I knew supply and demand would be good for something.

  1. Gen. Stoopnagle

    Jeremy Foley begs to differ.

    • He may not have a choice if the conference ever votes to go to a nine-game schedule.

      • Macallanlover

        I would still prefer a good matchup from another region of the country to a ninth conference game. If we are going to continue this political voting to establish a faux champion, there should be as much info as possible to help the dweebs who determine the MNC. In conferences without a playoff, games against all conference members should be required.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        It would be fine with me (and I believe favor the Dawgs) for the SEC to go to an 11 game conference schedule.

        • Personally, I think round-robin is the most honest way to schedule to determine a true conference champ, but it’ll never happen in the SEC for the simple reason that it makes a championship game irrelevant.

  2. Does that mean strength of schedule may start counting again? Keeping up with the maelstrom of metrics for determining a champion, is gonna require a PhD pretty soon.

  3. ConnGator

    I would love for Florida to play a yearly home-and-home with a Pac 10 or Big 12 team. However, Foley has said Florida needs seven home games per year, and having the Georgia game in Jax required three teams to come w/o return agreement. (Except in years where there is an extra week, which is when the Gators play Miami.)

    I know, Georgia gets by with six home games. I wish Florida did, too.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      Think about that for a minute. FLA always will have at least 7 home games (this year they have 8) PLUS the WLOCP (in reality a home game for the Gators) every year. Putting aside the advantage that gives the Gators, think about how much more convenient that is for their fans and how many more opportunities that it for their fans to see their team play.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        …..”this year they have 8 plus the WLOCP”….

        • ConnGator

          Florida only plays 8 if you count the Orange & Blue game.

          In normal years there are 4 home SEC games when FSU is away, and 3 home SEC games when FSU is home.

          Hence 3 other/cupcake games at home, though USF is far from a cupcake.

        • Mayor of Dawgtown

          Poor grammar on my part. It should have said “this year they have 8 including the WLOCP.” My apologies. The comment was intended to be a compliment to Foley’s consideration of the Gator fans by providing so many viewing opportunities in Florida. I believe, counting the FSU game, FLA plays 9 games this year in the State of Florida. That really is making a team accessible to its fanbase.

  4. 69Dawg

    If I was a state legislator and my state had smaller schools that played football and my BCS schools were spending 1 million plus to schedule these walk overs I would make it mandatory that the BCS school play the in-state walkover. Keep the damn money at home people. GA Southern should be on the schedule every year for both UGA and GT or they should not get any FCS teams at all.

  5. Mr. Georgia Football Returns

    All things might be possible. Nine game conference schedule plus 4 or 5 non-conference = 13 or 14 game regular season schedule playing right up to Christmas. I wouldn’t complain. The pros are doing it. More SEC Football and physical attrition.

  6. Tom

    This article is totally off on the money – an average of $500,000 paid out to a cupcake a few years ago, and $1 million average now? Nope – not even close. While there are instances of $1 million payouts, those are few & far between. The average is around $400,000, which is about what it was a few years ago. (Prices were trending upward, but they’ve gone back down in the last couple of years due to the economy.)