While the most prestigious programs in college basketball rarely have an issue when it comes to putting together a non-conference schedule, that isn’t always the case for programs that don’t enjoy that status. With that being the case the summer months are as much about filling the remaining holes in a schedule as they are about summer workouts and recruiting.
One program struggling to land one more game against a power conference team is Air Force, which is coming off of a 12-18 campaign. And according to the Colorado Springs Gazette, head coach Dave Pilipovich wants one more game to complement a schedule that already has road games against Colorado and Texas Tech. The problem for Air Force: finding a power conference team willing to play in Colorado Springs.
“We’ve tried so hard, but I don’t think it’s going to happen,” coach Dave Pilipovich said. “I don’t want to be selfish, but we want to get somebody here.”
Playing at The Broadmoor World Arena was considered, but Pilipovich said a team couldn’t be lured there or into what he called the “comfy confines of Clune Arena.”
Scheduling for teams outside of the power conferences depends as much on the program’s television value as it does the caliber of team on the floor. The Gonzagas and Wichita States of the world will be able to put together solid non-conference schedules for this reason, while others will struggle to do so because they aren’t perceived to provide as much value by television schedule-makers. And there’s also the reason that some power conference coaches don’t want to risk a loss in a setting such as Clune Arena.
Win the game on the road and you’re supposed to, while dropping the contest results in criticism for losing a game to a team of lesser prestige (in the eyes of the fan base). It’ll be interesting to see which team Air Force is able to come to an agreement with for the 2014-15 season, whether it’s for another home game on the schedule or if the Falcons have to relent and hit the road in order to get another power conference foe on the slate.