A few football scheduling notes here after a morning visit with associate AD John Hartwell. ...
Ole Miss will pay $925,000 for Louisiana-Lafayette to visit in 2014, while other low-level FBS teams announced on Monday, Idaho and New Mexico State, will receive $850,000.
The cost of signing FBS teams to deals with no return trip by Ole Miss has increased substantially since the SEC's lucrative deal with ESPN. These schools know there's more money coming in, and they're negotiating accordingly.
“I don't blame the Sun Belt or MAC schools at all for what they're doing in today's tight economic times,” Hartwell said. “Our challenge is that we're bidding against the Tennessees, Alabamas and Floridas who have 100,000 seats in their stadiums and will sign for $1.3, $1.4 and $1.5 million without batting an eye. I don't know if $925,000 can be called a reasonable number, but in today's market it really is on the lower end.”
How much Ole Miss can and will pay varies from team to team and year to year. While La.-Lafayette will receive more than Idaho or New Mexico State, the Rebels also open that season playing Boise State in Atlanta and will receive $2 million for being part of the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic.
Scheduling is mostly complete out to 2018. Fresno State has a game to return to Ole Miss, and there are dates to fill for one game in 2014 and for dates in 2016 and 2017.
Discussions are in an advanced stage for those three dates, but nothing is final.
“We'll continue to try and stay ahead of the curve out to five or six years,” Hartwell said.
One different challenge in the scheduling right now is the fact that schools are waiting for the extended SEC schedule, which they should receive at the spring meetings in Destin, if not sooner.