USF-Miami Game Moved to November 19, and Idle Schedule Speculation

As you've probably seen by now, USF and Miami have agreed to move their 2011 football game up from November 26 to November 19. Greg Auman has the full story, and mentions one benefit to this change:

The game has been played on Thanksgiving weekend each of the past two seasons, and moving up one week should take the instate rivalry out from the shadow of the holiday weekend's traditional Florida-Florida State game. Moving off the holiday weekend should be a boost for attendance as well.

The Big East requested that the game be moved, which makes me wonder if they are trying to set up some marquee ESPN games for Thanksgiving weekend. West Virginia and Pittsburgh usually play the Backyard Brawl that weekend, which limits the possibilities for the Bulls. But I wouldn't be at all surprised to see USF's home game against Louisville scheduled for the day after Thanksgiving, or even on Thursday night. (Thanksgiving is November 24, 2011. Texas and Texas A&M have played on Thanksgiving the last three years, although neither school's official site -- link and link -- says this year's game will be as well. Before then, games from a variety of leagues were played on Thanksgiving, like USC-Arizona StateMiami-Boston College, and the Egg Bowl.)

For a conference that doesn't have very many compelling league games at the moment, this might be a good one to put in front of lots of people watching TV. The two teams are likely to be among many people's preseason favorites, and last year's USF-Louisville game was one of the few exciting Big East games that didn't leave everyone feeling like they needed a shower afterwards (see: UConn-West Virginia). Playing the game on Thursday or Friday makes sure it doesn't bump up against the Florida-Florida State game on the 26th, which would draw away casual fans who might otherwise watch or buy tickets.

This is all just guessing and speculation, but if it comes true, remember: MUST CREDIT VOODOO FIVE.

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