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Blog Entry

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

Posted on: March 1, 2012 2:13 pm
While Thursday’s release of the Sun Belt’s 2012 football schedule didn’t bring as much fanfare as the SEC or Big 12 schedule release, it did give us a chance to look at which other conferences love the Sun Belt. Specifically which of the other 10 FBS conferences love playing against the Sun Belt.

And no one loves playing/beating the Sun Belt more than the SEC, especially Mississippi State.

Three of the Bulldogs' four non-conference games are against Sun Belt members Troy, South Alabama and Middle Tennessee. Their fourth non-conference game is against FCS member Jackson State. I guess there were no Division III teams available that week.

Anyway, Mississippi State is among nine SEC schools that will play Sun Belt schools this fall in a total of 12 non-conference games. The only SEC schools without a Sun Belt team on the schedule is Missouri, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt. Defending national champion Alabama’s schedule features two Sun Belt opponents: Western Kentucky and Florida Atlantic.

After the SEC, Conference USA has the most schools (six) playing Sun Belt opponents with a total of eight games.

Mississippi State is one of five schools with multiple Sun Belt opponents. Alabama, Memphis, Tulane and Navy each have two Sun Belt non-conference games.

The only FBS league that isn’t playing the Sun Belt is the WAC.

Last year, the Sun Belt was only 10-25 in non-conference games against FBS opponents, including a 1-2 bowl record.

Conference (games vs. Sun Belt)

ACC (3):
Duke, Georgia Tech, N.C. State
Big East (1):
Big 10 (1):
Big 12 (3):
Baylor, Kansas State, Oklahoma State
C-USA (6):
Houston, Memphis 2, Southern Miss, Tulane 2, UAB, UCF
Independents (1):
Navy 2
MAC (1):
Mountain West (1):
SEC (9):
Alabama 2, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State 3, Tennessee
Pac-12 (1):
WAC (0)


Since: Sep 6, 2008
Posted on: March 1, 2012 5:41 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

Why don't you write an article about how out of the 30 non-confrence games for the Big-12, 6 are against C-USA opponents, 2 are against MWC opponents, 2 against Sun Belt Opponents, and only 4 games are against other AQ conferences.  The SEC plays against 12 AQ schools in the combined schedule (1 non-SEC AQ opponent for every school except Miss St and Texas A&M).  Once again you try to hammer how weak the SEC schedules but you fail to mention that the other conferences feast on more cupcakes than the SEC.  EPIC FAIL on your part McMurphy

Since: Dec 10, 2009
Posted on: March 1, 2012 5:10 pm

The SEC non-conference schedule is mostly a joke

55 games (Missouri can still schedule one more)

9 total road games (16% of all non-conference games)

4 total nuetral site games (all of which are in the South)

Average miles (one way) for each away game = 271

15 games vs FCS teams
13 games vs BCS teams
27 games vs nonAQ teams

Combined record of the BCS/nonAQ teams.....213 - 258 (.452)

They may very well be the best conference, but you won't know it from their non-conference schedule.

Since: Oct 2, 2006
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:58 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

I mean... SEC is in the South.... Sun Belt.... you guessed it, south.

Everybody plays cupcakes. It makes sense to play those close in proximity. 

Does this guy actually get paid to write this crap?    

Since: Jan 9, 2008
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:57 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

Surprise, surprise, Alabama likes a cupcake schedule.....

Since: Apr 14, 2008
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:55 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

What is going on here?  CBS dogging the SEC for their scheduling?  I can't believe it!

Since: Oct 17, 2011
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:43 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

A team cant fill every open date with big name AQ teams. Last season, LSU played Oregon and WVU. Alabama played Penn St, and starts the 2012 season against Michigan. The SEC shedule is 8 games, with the ability to fill 4 slots. A team like Alabama cant fill all 4 slots with USC, Notre Dame, Michigan and Nebraska. Every team in every AQ conference plays 2 or 3 smaller schools from weaker conferences at home every year. 

And, btw, enough with the "Ok St lost cause of the tragedy" argument. They had a 17 point lead going into the 4th qtr of that game. What happened, the tragedy didnt affect them for 3 qtrs, then all of a sudden hit them in the 4th? Alabama overcame enormous tragedy with the tornado that killed 50 people in Tuscaloosa, not to mention that the starting left tackle died just before fall practice began. Using the plane crash is nothing but an excuse. Yes, it was absolutely tragic, but to say thats why Ok St lost the game is BS and you know it.

Ok St's non conference schedule in 2011 was Louisiana-Lafayette from the Sun Belt conference, Tulsa from Conference USA, and their "big" out of conference matchup was 4-8 Arizona. 

A true "disgrace" is "fans" like you who do nothing but whine and make excuses. Sorry, but your team blew a 3 possession lead to a 4 possession underdog and therefor you didnt get to play for the title. Get over it and move on. 

Since: Apr 23, 2007
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:41 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

I think Mississippi State just submitted an application to join the Sun Belt. Seriously, though, the Sun Belt is in the SEC's geographic footprint and it counts as an FBS win toward bowl eligibility. I think if you look closely at Big Ten schedules you'll see a lot of MAC teams showing up on them.

Since: Oct 30, 2008
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:40 pm

SEC loves (playing) the Sun Belt

I'm sorry do we automatically assume the Sun Belt is the weakest conf every year? I'd have to disagree...just because it's a "new" D1 conf for the most part with some small schools doesn't mean they can't play...the sunbelt does it's fair share of upsets each and every year and has a bowl record just below 50% since "bowling". Ask Bama about ULM or Mizzou and Ok St about TROY and you'll get unfavorable responses...Harder for SB teams to "ReLoad" each year?...YES. Weakest Conf: No.

My point is I don't think you'll get a big boost in strength of schedule by scheduling MAC or CUSA teams over Sun Belt Teams...

Since: Aug 26, 2008
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:26 pm

SEC: A true DISGRACE to the spirit of competition

This is a great example as to why the SEC, and those associated with it, are so repugnant. They claim to be the best conference in college football but refuse to play real teams, instead padding their schedules with FCS teams and Sun Belt teams. Most (maybe all) of those games are at home as well.

The SEC's "strength" of schedule is a by-product of the misconception and the gross exaggeration of its own value. A myth that they themselves are the most guilty of perpetuating, along with TV partners (CBS) and those who benefit financially.

The SEC has gamed the system to the point that it is an embarrassment to what sport and competition should stand for.

The Big 12 was the deepest and best conference in 2011, and the CHAMPION of that conference, that had just one loss following a tragedy, was not allowed to play in the "Championship" game.

A true DISGRACE to the spirit of competition.

Since: Oct 17, 2011
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:23 pm

Anti-SEC propaganda at its finest.

This is anti-SEC propaganda at its finest. Pac 12 teams fill their openings with WAC teams. Big 12 teams fill their openings with MWC teams. All AQ conferences fill their open dates with teams from smaller conferences that come from the same part of the country. It makes traveling easier both for the team and the fans. Choosing to ignore the fact that all major teams play small schools from weaker conferences while at the same time pointing it out against the SEC is just further proof that "journalists" like McMurphy are trying to push an agenda. People like him will do anything they can to try to give the SEC a black eye. Keep drinking the haterade, B-Mac.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or