Berry Tramel: Big 12 has upgraded the football scheduling

Barry Switzer was promoted to conduct manager in Jan 1973. When a Switzer epoch began that September, OU’s second diversion was in a Los Angeles Coliseum. Against top-ranked Southern Cal.

The Trojans of John McKay and Pat Haden and Anthony Davis and Lynn Swann and Richard Wood and Gary Jeter.

Some demeanour during such tests as barriers to success. That’s misguided. Such games are gateways to success.

Lincoln Riley was promoted to conduct manager on Jun 7. When a Riley epoch starts in September, OU’s second diversion will be in Ohio Stadium, opposite strong Ohio State. The Buckeyes of Urban Meyer and J.T. Barrett and Jamarco Jones and Mike Weber and Tyquan Lewis.

Forty-four years ago, Switzer’s Sooners done everybody comprehend that things were going to be usually glorious though Chuck Fairbanks, when they outplayed USC before settling for a 7-7 tie in a Coliseum.

Now Riley’s Sooners can do a same opposite Ohio State.

Games like Oklahoma-Ohio State are not impediments. They are opportunity.

When OU announced Riley’s hiring, a expelled matter from Riley contained 132 words. Two of those difference were “opportunity.”

“…honored to be given this opportunity…”

“…grateful … for desiring in me and affording me this opportunity.”

We infrequently use “opportunity” as a synonym for “job.” But a Oklahoma pursuit comes with many an opportunity. Starting with games like Ohio State, that are what make college football great.

And a same is loyal of Big 12 football in general. The beleaguered discussion has upgraded a scheduling. The Big 12 has given itself some-more event for success.

In my annual rankings of non-conference scheduling among a 64 Power-5 Conference schools, a Big 12 acquits itself softened than in years past, when it consistently ranked with a SEC next a other Power-5 conferences.

— In 2017, 33.3 percent of a Big 12′s non-conference games are opposite Power-5 foes. Only a ACC has a aloft commission (.393)

— The Big 12 plays 23.3 percent of a non-conference games opposite lower-division opponents. That’s 7 of 30 games. A year ago, a Big 12 played 8 games I-AA teams. Every small bit helps. The Big 12′s figure is softened than a SEC’s (25 percent) though still distant next a Big Ten, that is personification usually dual of 42 non-conference games opposite lower-division teams. The ACC (23.2 percent) and Pac-12 (22.2 percent) closely counterpart a Big 12′s number.

The Big 12 still could urge a scheduling prowess. OU-Ohio State, Texas-Southern Cal and West Virginia-Virginia Tech are a league’s usually games opposite normal powers. And a Big 12 could urge on scheduling rival mid-majors.

This season, OSU-Tulsa and Texas Tech-Houston are a usually games opposite teams outward a Power-5 that reason many interest.

But for a many part, a Big 12 has softened a scheduling, as was urged by a discussion a few years ago.

For too long, Big 12 schools looked during scheduling as a approach to build adult victories instead of build adult reputations. The discussion paid a complicated price, nothing moreso than in 2014, when Baylor clearly would have done a College Football Playoff had it not played SMU, Northwestern State of Louisiana and Buffalo in a non-conference.

That mindset is starting to change. I’ve got Texas (sixth), OU (10th), OSU (17th), Texas Tech (20th) and West Virginia (25th) in a tip 25 of non-conference schedules. That’s glorious illustration for a 10-team conference.

That’s a usually approach a Big 12 can get behind to aloft belligerent in college football. The Big 12 has to win a approach there, by holding advantage of opportunity.

Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached during (405) 760-8080 or during btramel@oklahoman.com. He can be listened Monday by Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also perspective his celebrity page during newsok.com/berrytramel

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