Speaking of USF, the Bulls have some good reasons for ending the commitment to play the University of Central Florida in football after the next two (2007-08) games. They’re just not good enough reasons.
USF has to play UCF as part of its exit agreement with C-USA in 2004. As soon as the obligation ends, USF will replace UCF with bigger name schools (including North Carolina, Kansas and Indiana) in home-and-home series. It’s a sign that USF is increasingly a player at the major college level and can command such parity scheduling from big-name opponents. Which UCF is not.
What UCF is, however, is something that the UNCs, KUs and IUs can’t be for USF. A low-overhead opponent that will bring a ton of fans to Tampa or Orlando. In 2005 the USF-UCF game drew more than 45,000 to Raymond James Stadium. That’s the third largest home crowd in USF history. Anyone think Indiana will top that?
The big-draw, Interstate-4 rivalry game is exactly what a tradition-challenged program such as USF needs. But will no longer have after the 2008 season.