Wednesday, January 27, 2010

BYU's Record in One-and-Done Games

With this week’s announcement that BYU will play Texas in Austin on Sept 10, 2011, it is worth taking a closer look at BYU’s history with similar games. Since LaVell Edwards took over the program in 1972, BYU has played 25 “one-and-done” games, where there is no follow-up game with the opponent and compiled an incredible 20-5 record. Of those games, 10 have been with schools from current BCS AQ conferences (6-4 record), 7 with other FBS schools (6-1 record), and 8 with FCS schools (8-0). Here is the full list:

Year Team              Level  Site      W/L   Score
2009 Oklahoma         BCS  Neutral  Win   14-13
2009 Tulane               FBS   Road     Win   54-3
2008 Northern Iowa   FCS   Home   Win   41-17
2007 E. Washington   FCS   Home    Win   42-7
2005 Eastern Illinois   FCS  Home    Win   45-10
2001 Tulane               FBS  Home    Win   70-35
2000 Florida State      BCS Neutral   Loss  3-29
1998 Alabama            BCS Road      Loss  31-38
1998 Murray State     FCS  Home    Win   43-9
1996 Texas A&M       BCS  Home    Win   41-37
1996 Arkansas State  FCS  Home    Win   58-9
1994 NE Louisiana     FCS  Home    Win   24-10
1991 Florida State      BCS  Neutral  Loss  44-28
1989 Navy                 FBS  Road     Win   31-10
1985 Boston College   BCS  Neutral  Win   28-14
1984 Tulsa                 FBS  Home    Win   38-15
1983 Bowling Green    FBS  Home    Win   63-28
1982 Georgia             BCS  Road    Loss   14-17
1981 Colorado            BCS  Road    Win   41-20
1980 Wisconsin          BCS  Road    Win   28-3
1979 Texas A&M       BCS  Road    Win   18-17
1979 Weber State      FCS  Home    Win   48-3
1978 UNLV                FBS   Neutral  Win   28-24
1975 Bowling Green   FBS  Home    Loss  21-23
1973 Weber State      FCS  Home    Win   45-14

BCS Opponents
Of the 10 games played against current BCS opponents in the last 38 years, here are a couple of interesting notes…

• Only 1 home game, 4 neutral, and 5 on the road

• 6-4 Record overall

• Wins: 1 win at home (Texas A&M, 1996 Pigskin Classic), 2 wins at “neutral” sites(Oklahoma 2009, Boston College 1985 Kickoff Classic), 3 wins on the road (Colorado 1981, Wisconsin 1980, and Texas A&M 1979)

• Losses: 2 neutral sites (both to Florida State in Pigskin Classics at Jacsonville, FL in 2000 and Anaheim, CA in 1991), 2 road games (Alabama 1998, Georgia 1982)

• The game with Texas will be the first time BYU did a one-and-done with a BCS team at the opponent’s home stadium since playing at Alabama in 1998

• BYU has only played 6 one-and-done’s at the opponent’s home stadium since 1972—Alabama in 1998, Navy in 1989, and then four in a row from 1979-82 (Texas A&M 1979, Wisconsin 1980, Colorado 1981, Georgia 1982)

After the string of one and done road games in the early 80’s, a newly expanded stadium, and some national success, it seems that BYU was able to schedule home and away games with BCS caliber programs without too much difficulty for the next 25 years. It has only been the last 1-2 years that BCS schools are no longer as willing to do so. This could be seen either as the new reality of the BCS—you get what you measure, which is apparently wins, regardless of the opponent—or seen a sign that BYU is no longer respected the way they were for much of the last three decades and its stadium is no longer a sufficient draw/payout for opposing teams. Reality is probably somewhere in between.

FBS (Div I)
• The Cougars have had 7 one time games with other Division I schools, playing 4 of them at home (Tulane 2001, Tulsa 1984, Bowling Green 1983 and 1975), one neutral (UNLV in Japan), and two on the road (Tulane 2009, Navy 1989)

• Aside from the Black Coaches Association Classic with Tulane (and Texas A&M in the Pigskin Classic in 1996 as mentioned above), it has been more than 25 years since BYU was able to bring in an FBS/division I team to play in Provo without a return game.

• BYU has a 6-1 record in these games with FBS teams—the Cougs have not lost a one-and-done game with an FBS team since the 1975 loss to Bowling Green

It is unlikely that any non-AQ FBS teams will show up as one and done games on BYU’s schedule in the near future, as those teams are also feeling pressure to get wins and finding difficulty in filling home games.  The one time visit to Tulane last year is a curiosity, likely transpiring out of a desire to play on ESPN (which a home game would not afford).

FCS (Div I-AA)
• BYU has played 8 FCS teams in one time match-ups, all of them at home, going 8-0 in these games (and avoiding the Michigan-Appalachian State disaster)

• Other than regional rivalry games with Weber State in the early 1970’s, half of these games have been played in the last five years (2008, 2007, 2005, 1998, 1996, 1994), and all of them relatively recently—either a sign of the increasing importance of wins in the BCS system, or a sign of the increasing difficulty of scheduling good opponents.

It is likely that fans will see a continued increase in the number of these games scheduled in future seasons as the team finds it harder and harder to schedule games with comparable programs and needs to fill home slots for revenue generation. Plausibly, there will be no more than one per year, and hopefully (from the fan’s perspective) not in consecutive years.

1 comment:

  1. This was a great read!! I am excited to go to that game! And it is always nice to have the cougars schedule down here in Texas making it easier on me (and the wife) to go to a BYU game every year. And we always welcome visitors to come down and spend the weekend...