UCF AD Danny White responds to criticism of scheduling FIU home-and-home, declining Florida 2-for-1
Whether it’s in season or out of season, UCF football has a way of being a popular topic in the college football world. When fans debate the Knights’ claim to the 2017 national championship and whether the team belongs in the College Football Playoff, UCF’s schedule is usually at the center of the discussion.
You might remember the debate surrounding UCF’s schedule blew up when records revealed that the program turned down a 2-for-1 offer from Florida (two games in Gainesville, one game in Orlando). Recently, it was announced that UCF scheduled a home-and-home with Florida International (FIU). USA Today columnist Dan Wolken stirred up the UCF fanbase when he tweeted, “So Danny White won’t do 2-for-1s with Power Fives but will do 1-for-1s with FIU. Makes sense.”
The comments led to Wolken debating UCF’s scheduling practice with Orlando columnist and radio host Mike Bianchi and White himself appearing on Bianchi’s “Open Mike” podcast to defend himself and his program.
“All this off-season, everyone wants to talk about UCF scheduling. … We’ve been clear since the beginning what we’re trying to do,” White told Bianchi. “We’re trying to play two non-conference Power 6 opponents home and away, one FCS and you have to play another opponent, and that’s where FIU fits in.”
UCF and other AAC programs refer to the conference as a Power 6, likening it to the SEC, ACC, Big Ten, Big 12 and Pac-12.
The way White tells it, he can’t get anyone to agree to play UCF – on its terms. The program is adamant about home-and-home with Power 5 programs, not 2-for-1 like UF’s offer.
“We find ourselves desperate for opponents pretty often, because as we’ve gotten more competitive, it’s really hard to get people to agree to play us,” White said. “So, the last slot I usually fill is that last non-P6 opponent.”
He added that he wouldn’t take a Power 5 2-for-1 even if it boosted UCF’s chances of making the CFP.
“I think we’re at the top level. I’m not going to waste any time trying to schedule for a four-team playoff, because it’s not a playoff, it’s an invitational. It’s not an adequate postseason. I think our schedule works great for an eight-team playoff; I think that’s where it needs to go.”