KG at Orange and Blue Hue has chimed in.
Henry Mergz at Saurian Sagacity has had his own thoughts.
And in response to a post (or two, actually) on the subject at DawgSports, Tightwad Hill, who has a California Golden Bears blog, has contributed a lengthy analysis comparing the non-conference schedules for the SEC and PAC-10 in 2007. It’s a good read, although I question a couple of assertions in his piece.
I’ve never understood the travel criticism levelled at the SEC – as long as your schools are playing credible opponents, does it really matter where they’re located? (On the other hand, I’m still pissed that UCLA cancelled the road part of the home and home series with the Dawgs in the 80’s. I was looking forward to a trip to LA.)
And does it really matter why a school has a particular non-conference opponent on its schedule? If you’re going to discount “rivalry” games because a school has to play them, shouldn’t you also account for those games when a school gets screwed by a last minute cancellation (which is what UCF has done to Georgia and Florida in ’06 and ’07, respectively) and is forced to find any program with a pulse to fill in?
He does score a telling point when he writes
… our gimps are better than yours. If a Sagarin rating below 60 can be considered a guaranteed win for a pretty good team, then 21% of the Pac-10’s ’07 games are guaranteed wins. 54% – a clear majority – of the SEC’s ’07 OOC games are guaranteed wins.
Have I mentioned that Arkansas’ non-conference schedule for ’07 is a total embarrassment?