UB’s additions of Penn State and Nebraska to future football schedules could be construed as a money grab, and to some extent it is. But my opposition to mid-major programs scheduling “way up” melted when the Bulls went to Ohio State in 2014, gave the Buckeyes a game and saw Khalil Mack put on a dominant performance that vaulted him into the first round of the NFL Draft,
The odds are small that UB will score a victory on the road against a storied Big Ten opponent. Small, yes. But possible nonetheless.
UB’s MAC brethren have had their successes. In 2003, Northern Illinois knocked off No. 14 Maryland, then of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Toledo dumped Michigan in the Big House in 2008. Last season the MAC ranked behind only the American on the mid-major scale.
UB is paid about $1 million for games against Power Five conferences. Mack made millions more come draft day thanks to Ohio State.
Mid-major athletes want to play these games for the experience, to see how they measure up. Occasionally they measure up well.