This year, the OVC will play 10 games against teams from the other subdivision of NCAA Division I football, the FBS (because the two are equal after all…) in what’s known as “money games”
Why call them “money games?” Simple. The OVC teams get paid to go lose. As least, that’s essentially the plan. But, as we’ve seen many times, not all plans work out.
Since the purpose of money games is…well, money, ranking them should be an easy task.
More money = higher ranking, right?
But for the most part, fans don’t care about the money part. They want to see a good game. They want to see their team pull off an upset that’s remembered years from now (like Appalachian State over Michigan)
So what goes into a good money game for the fans? I broke it down into 3 categories:
- Distance from the school: Can I drive to see it?
- Opportunity: A team’s chance of winning
- Opponents “prestige”
There’s not a whole lot to like about this matchup. Central Michigan is one of the more “beatable” teams in the MAC, sure, but SEMO isn’t exactly a football powerhouse. (That’s me being kind…) This game is a 10-hour drive, minimum, meaning most every fan will be forced to hear this one on the radio.
There are a few teams in the MAC I think UT Martin would truly have a chance against. This…isn’t one of them. Northern Illinois isn’t terribly well know outside the conference, but if they put together another 11-win season, something tells me they’ll find they’re way on to a few radars. Too bad the schools are so far apart.
This is almost too “classic” a money game. Austin Peay is making a long trip to Virginia Tech, a team against which they have virtually no chance. But it is Virginia Tech, meaning the game might be able to be found on TV, and if Austin Peay does stay with the Hokies for a quarter or two, it will likely raise a few eyebrows. That’s a best case scenario…though.
This game is all kinds of weird. First off, it’s in Week 12, which is not usually when you want to be playing money games. But there’s 2 ways to look at it: it’s a game that prepares Jacksonville State for the FCS Playoffs (assuming they make it that far this season) or it’s a game that demoralizes them ahead of the FCS Playoffs. Depends if you’re a glass half full kind of person. I give Jax St. a “C-” for opportunity simply because they’ve beaten SEC teams in the recent past, and Florida is in the much weaker East division. But beating Florida now wouldn’t be quite as spectacular as it would have been a few years ago.
Which will be larger: The amount of points TTU loses by, or the number of fans that can afford plane tickets to make this journey? TTU might get a shout out on Gameday when the crew makes fun of Oregon’s “cupcake” opponent in Week 3. The good news is that TTU will be coming off of 2 “cupcake” games themselves before heading to Eugene.
Five games remain…those rankings will come out tomorrow.