THAT SUCKS, BYU (A RUNNING THEME FOR THEM)

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

IT SORT OF SUCKS FOR BYU (THIS HAS HAPPENED BEFORE)

It sucks for BYU. That phrase has no expiration date, so dust if off and use it now without any worry about freshness. It sucks that BYU, a very good football team with a long tradition of winning and being good at football things, may not even be considered a major-type program to schedule by the big five conferences, or at least by the ACC and SEC.

This is deeply unfair, but unfair has never, ever stopped anything from becoming law in college football. (We don't even pay our players! That's still legal in the year 2014!) It's also far from anything new, because BYU's current status as the cleanest homeless man in college football is little different than their status in 1984, when they became the cleanest homeless man to ever waltz in, squat in the the throne room for a bit, and become for one insane year the title holders for all of the sport.

If you're joining us in mid-action: BYU won a national title in 1984 with this very schedule.

G Date Day School Opponent Conf Pts Opp W L T Streak Notes
1 Sep 1, 1984 Sat Brigham Young @ (3) Pittsburgh Ind W 20 14 1 0 0 W 1
2 Sep 8, 1984 Sat (13) Brigham Young Baylor SWC W 47 13 2 0 0 W 2
3 Sep 15, 1984 Sat (8) Brigham Young Tulsa MVC W 38 15 3 0 0 W 3
4 Sep 22, 1984 Sat (6) Brigham Young @ Hawaii WAC W 18 13 4 0 0 W 4
5 Oct 6, 1984 Sat (7) Brigham Young @ Colorado State WAC W 52 9 5 0 0 W 5
6 Oct 13, 1984 Sat (5) Brigham Young Wyoming WAC W 41 38 6 0 0 W 6
7 Oct 20, 1984 Sat (7) Brigham Young @ Air Force WAC W 30 25 7 0 0 W 7
8 Oct 25, 1984 Thu (5) Brigham Young @ New Mexico WAC W 48 0 8 0 0 W 8
9 Nov 3, 1984 Sat (4) Brigham Young Texas-El Paso WAC W 42 9 9 0 0 W 9
10 Nov 10, 1984 Sat (4) Brigham Young San Diego State WAC W 34 3 10 0 0 W 10
11 Nov 17, 1984 Sat (3) Brigham Young @ Utah WAC W 24 14 11 0 0 W 11
12 Nov 24, 1984 Sat (1) Brigham Young Utah State PCAA W 38 13 12 0 0 W 12
13 Dec 21, 1984 Fri (1) Brigham Young N Michigan Big Ten W 24 17 13 0 0 W 13 Holiday Bowl (San Diego, CA)
Provided by Sports-Reference.com/CFB: View Original Table
Generated 5/13/2014.

Back in 1984, playing Pitt was a good thing, and beating Michigan was enough to get you enough votes for a national title--admittedly, the strangest national title in modern college football history, but the board says #1 and leaves no room for qualifiers like "OMG ROBBIE BOSCO WON A NATIONAL TITLE?" If this schedule resembles Florida State's 2013 schedule in any way at all, please keep the comment to yourself. #FSUTwitter never sleeps, and will catch up with you up to six to eight hours after your original comment.

Our point is that it sucks that BYU can, after almost forty years of being very good, still get zero traction in terms of either playing into a major conference or b.) being recognized as a surefire, nasty, first-rank college power. Geography, oddball conference histories, and the completely cracked incentive structures of the sport have turned BYU into an even stranger outlier than they might already be, a perfectly fine animal no one wants to touch for too long, or at too close a distance. They can stay the night, maybe even set a few dates on a steady basis here and there, but in the end they're still one of college football's last true independents--maybe the last true independent. That's been their choice, for the most part, but that it's one of their few options at this point speaks to the difficulty of making any sense of how things actually work in America's finest unpaid volunteer sport.

Fresno State used to talk about playing anyone, anywhere, but BYU's only option at this point after the demise of the WAC is to really do that, and make schedules that look like the randomly selected slates you get playing on dynasty mode. It's something Notre Dame decided they couldn't do, and that was with a much larger profile and a real television contract shut up shut up shut up shut up NBC is still a television network. Sort of. Maybe. It's a hard living, is what we're saying, particularly when Utah's picking up easy Pac-12 checks in Salt Lake for going 2-7 in conference.

P.S. Someone once made a cowboy song about Robbie Bosco, proving you really can write a song about anyone.

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