Dienhart: Dropping FCS foes makes total sense

Dienhart: Dropping FCS foes makes total sense

Talking on his radio show last night, Wisconsin A.D. Barry Alvarez said that Big Ten A.D.s have agreed to stop scheduling FCS schools in the future. Alvarez gave no indication on when Big Ten schools would stop playing FCS foes. But, it can’t happen soon enough in what often are little more than glorified scrimmages.

This is the latest item revealed concerning Big Ten schedules, as Commissioner Jim Delany recently said the Big Ten will study a move from an eight- to a nine- or 10-game league schedule.

Several FCS schools are on the schedule of Big Ten teams in 2013:

  • Indiana plays Indiana State
  • Illinois plays Southern Illinois
  • Iowa plays Missouri State
  • Michigan State plays Youngstown State
  • Minnesota plays Western Illinois
  • Nebraska plays South Dakota State
  • Northwestern plays Maine
  • Ohio State plays Florida A&M
  • Purdue plays Indiana State
  • Wisconsin plays Tennessee Tech

Michigan and Penn State are the lone schools with no FCS foe in 2013. Take a bow, Brady Hoke and Bill O’Brien.

Last season, Big Ten teams played eight games vs. FCS foes, winning them all and often in lopsided fashion. Illinois beat Charleston Southern; Indiana beat Indiana State; Iowa beat Northern Iowa; Minnesota beat New Hampshire; Nebraska beat Idaho State; Northwestern beat South Dakota; Purdue beat Eastern Kentucky; Wisconsin beat Northern Iowa.

Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Penn State didn’t play an FCS foe in 2012.

Of course, one of the most epic Big Ten vs. FCS games came in 2007, when Appalachian State won at Michigan, 34-32. And Minnesota lost to South Dakota in 2010 and North Dakota State in 2011.

But, days of upsets like that appear to be finished.

About Tom Dienhart BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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