USC has one nonconference opening on 2025 and 2027 schedules — how should it use it?
The USC football schedules will be Big Ten schedules starting in 2024. The nonconference piece of the puzzle will be fascinating. In 2024 and 2026, the dance card has already been filled.
In 2024, LSU and San Jose State join Notre Dame. In 2026, Ole Miss and Fresno State join Notre Dame.
In 2025, Ole Miss and Notre Dame are on the docket, but one schedule slot is open.
In 2027, UNLV and Notre Dame are on the slate, but one schedule slot is open.
How should USC deal with these open slots?
One thing to keep in mind here is that Stanford and Cal become nonconference schools in 2024 when the Big Ten move is official. Some USC fans might want to play other teams, but the point exists that when USC goes to the Big Ten, the Trojans will be playing lots of new opponents. Having familiar opponents such as Stanford and Cal will actually provide some balance and continuity to the schedule, and will also limit travel. That matters when one realizes all the flight miles USC will accumulate in the Big Ten.
There’s a lot to consider, and we talked about it with Mark Rogers at The Voice of College Football:
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