The American Athletic Conference (AAC) is the Cadillac of the Group of Five (G5) leagues, at least, for one more year. In 2023, Cincinnati, Central Florida, & Houston (arguably the AAC’s three best programs) will be leaving the American for the Big 12! The B-12 will be a 16 team conference for one year, as Oklahoma & Texas will not be vacating from the B-12, for the Southeastern Conference, until the 2024 season.
BYU, an Independent, will be joining Cincy, UCF, & Houston bringing the B-12 back to twelve (12) teams for the 1st time since 2010.
The American will be welcoming six (6) new members in 2023, all from C-USA (UNC Charlotte, FAU, UAB, North Texas, Rice, & UTSA). While these programs field credible teams and take the AAC from am eleven (11) to a fourteen (14) team conference; they are not the quality of the three (3) teams that are leaving!
If you have read earlier blogs that I have written re: 2022 schedules, the information provided below will be redundant, I always place this data on/in the blog for 1st time readers!
On Sully’s College Football Page, we use a system of color coding to make the reading of a particular team’s strength of schedule, easily recognized and understood!
The color Red is used to identify conference games, Yellow, for Power Five (P5) opponents, Green, to signify Group of Five (G5) teams, and finally, we use Light Blue for the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS). The FCS can offer up to 63 scholarship (not more than 63, yet can offer fewer), while the Football Bowl Subdivision ( P5 & G5) must provide 85 scholarships or lose their status as an FBS program!
In should be noted, the terms P5 & G5 are not NCAA language, but rather the constructs of five conferences (ACC, B-10, B-12, PAC 12, & SEC) and Notre Dame! No one is quiet sure of the origin of these terms, Power Five & Group of Five, they seem to have evolved over time, suffice to say, they are not NCAA Terms!
The link provided below will take you to Sully’s College Football Page (SCFP) featuring Conference-USA (C-USA) 2022 schedule information!
The AAC currently has 11 teams and they play 8 conference for a total of 88 league tilts, (11 teams X 8 games = 88 contests). Like the B-12, the American is not currently organized into divisions. That said, one major distinction is that the B-12 play 9 conference games and having 10 teams in their league, they are able to play a round-robin (every team plays every other team in the league).
To play a round-robin the AAC would have to play 10 conference games not the 8 they currently play!
The American plays 44 Non-Conference (NC) games in 2022 (11 X 4 = 44), here is the breakdown for the 2022 season!
The AAC takes on 20 power Five (P5) opponents! The AAC plays ACC in 5 battles, the B-12 in 4 games, the Southeastern in 4, & Independents (Army, BYU or ND) 4 times. The also line-it-up vs B-10 on 3 occasions and do not play a PAC 12 team in 2022!
Of the 20 meetings the AAC has with P5 opponents, 8 are home games and 12 are played in Power Five stadiums. Compare this ratio of home games 8/20 = 40% to C-USA’s ratio of 2 @ home & 15 away, 2/17 = 12% @ home. It becomes clear, that the American Athletic Conference carries greater respect than any other G5 conference (this fact, will be shown as we continue to explore 2022 G5 schedules), in that P5’s are willing to travel to take on AAC teams!
In the 2022 season, the AAC will get-in-on with 14 teams from four (4) G5 conference and teams playing as independents (C-USA 7 games, four (4) games vs the Mid-American Conference & Mountain West Conference, 2 vs Independent teams, & 1 game vs Sun Belt Conference).
The AAC vs G5 opponents home/away breakdown is as follows; the American play 9 of the 14 games in AAC Arenas and hit the road for 5 of these games in the 2022!
Finally, the American Athletic plays 10 games against the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS). Houston is the only AAC team that does not play a 63 scholarship program (Please note: an FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) member must offer 85 scholarships or lose their FBS status. All ten (10) meetings will be decided in AAC stadiums!
And as always … enjoy the games!