Less than 24 hours after losing this weekend’s scheduled home game with Florida International University due to the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Indiana University athletic director Fred Glass has found a 12th game to put on the slate. Charleston Southern University, a member of the NCAA’s Football Championship Subdivision, will be coming to Bloomington on IU’s previously scheduled off date of October 7th. Thus, the cancellation this weekend will function as the second bye week previously built into the Hoosiers’ schedule.
Charleston Southern seems like a pretty good fit for this matchup, especially given the fact that Glass had so little time to find anyone who was even willing to play. Although the Buccaneers haven’t beaten an FBS opponent since a narrow victory over Conference USA’s Charlotte University in 2014, they have won back-to-back championships in their own FCS conference, the Big South, and routinely held their own in tough matchups with stalwart programs like North Dakota State and Coastal Carolina. So while seeing Charleston Southern on the list of opponents isn’t nearly as eye-catching as a school like Georgia Tech, South Florida, or other rumored Power 5 opponents, they at least won’t be the same kind of cupcake that most schools would try to get in this situation.
What’s primarily important–and I cannot stress this enough–is that the players, coaches, and staff of FIU’s football team are safe; same goes for their family and loved ones. Apart from that, it’s good for the continued development of IU’s football aspirations to get another very winnable game on the schedule. Amazingly, it’s going to cost roughly the same amount as FIU would have; the Golden Panthers would have gotten $800,000 for playing the game–which has been rescheduled for 2024–whereas Charleston Southern is getting about $750,000. So the Hoosiers now only need three B1G wins–with Illinois, Purdue, and Rutgers on the schedule–and they saved $50,000 in less than a day.
Nice work, Mr. Glass.
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