It took an economic crisis for Boise State athletic director Gene Bleymaier to see the light.
The Broncos are looking to schedule a big-money, one-and-done game against a BCS school for 2010 and 2011, marking a giant leap forward for a school that has grown a reputation of demanding home-and-home series with the big schools. (HT: Magnanimous M@tt)The change in perspective is one of many cost-cutting, money-raising measures that the school will adopt going forward. Others include:
- Not printing media guides
- Doubling the amount of bleacher seats
- Laying people off
- Taking the University of Idaho's lunch money
But all those financial moves are secondary compared to the big news of the Broncos heading somewhere special starting next season. Now the only question is: where?
To answer that, I had planned on doing loads of research on NCAA teams who might need an extra opponent next fall. But then Brian Murphy went ahead and did it for me. See? Newspapers do serve a purpose.
- Notre Dame
- Oklahoma State
- Washington State
By some cruel twist of fate, Georgia finds its way onto this list. Athens was the site of one of Boise State's biggest disappointments when the Bulldogs handed it to BSU in the season opener of 2005, so I'm only slightly exaggerating when I say that I just pooped my pants seeing them as a possibility for a 2010 road game.
Another team of note is Washington State, the last school to knock off the Broncos at Bronco Stadium in the regular season. The Cougars might be the easiest opponent on this list, too, which I assume gets Bleymaier all kinds of giddy.
The Broncos have been to Arkansas (twice) and Wisconsin in recent years. Notre Dame and Missouri have Nevada on the schedule this season. Alabama's Nick Saban once made googly-eyes at Broncos offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin. The storylines seem endless.
And that's the great part about Bleymaier's decision. Fans can talk until they're blue in the face about which teams they most want to see the Broncos face (and they are encouraged to do so down in the comments), but the fact that they even get a chance to talk about it is news in and of itself. No matter who Boise State adds to its 2010 and 2011 schedules, the fans will come out winners. We can't complain about any big school because they all offer an outstanding opportunity and an exciting possibility. In a few months we'll be planning a trip to Berkeley or brushing up on our Kentucky-isms ("I'm fixin to change the awl in my car" - I could use some more work). It sure beats faking interest in a UC Davis home game.
The economy may have ruined people's lives, foretold a coming apocalypse, and caused massive cutbacks on Chuck, but it opened up a world of possibilities for our beloved Boise State Broncos. It's not quite a wash, but at least it's something.
(For the record, my 2010 big-money road game wishlist looks like this: 1. Washington State because it's very winnable and very nearby, 2. Alabama because beating an SEC school would be sweet, 3. Michigan/Notre Dame for the college football history, 4. Cal so that the Broncos could take down two Pac-10 schools in one year.)