2020 SEC football schedule: 5 things that immediately jump out following schedule release
The Southeastern Conference released the full 2020 football schedule on Wednesday, which can be viewed here.
With all 14 league teams having their schedules released, there is much to discuss but five items immediately jumped out upon initial viewing:
It’s time to mandate two open weeks per schedule
One of the most underrated aspects of the upcoming college football season is the fact that all teams are getting at least two open weeks — Florida and Miami are each technically getting three open weeks after moving up their season opener a week. The SEC slate is such a grind, it’s in the best interest of the players to give them two weekends during the regular season where they get to rest their bodies on Saturday. Aside from starting a week earlier in potentially hot weather, I can’t think of many downsides to having multiple open weeks on the schedule.
The Third Saturday in October could be competitive
What happened the last time Tennessee had two weeks to prepare for Alabama and the Crimson Tide had to play eight weeks in a row? The Volunteers nearly upset Alabama in Tuscaloosa. It will happen again in 2020, and this time, Tennesse gets Alabama in Neyland Stadium. Obviously, how the schedule breaks down won’t be nearly as big of a factor as the players that take the field for this game but if the Vols continue to progress under Jeremy Pruitt, it’s not unrealistic to think this game will be competitive come the Third Saturday in October.
Arkansas has the most brutal mid-season stretch of 2020
Back in 2017, the Razorbacks had an early open week and had to play 10 consecutive games to close out the season. One look at the 2020 schedule and Arkansas would probably accept 10 games in a row if it meant switching out of this stretch from Sept. 12 to Nov. 7 the program faces in 2020. Here is how the schedule breaks down during those dates: at Notre Dame, at Mississippi State, vs. Texas A&M (in Arlington), vs. Charleston Southern, vs. Alabama, vs. LSU, vs. Tennessee and at Auburn to finish up. Good luck with Razorbacks, you are going to need it.
Florida has the most manageable road schedule
There is no such thing as an easy SEC schedule but the Gators have one of the most favorable road schedules I’ve ever seen. Florida travels to Tennessee (Sept. 26), to Ole Miss (Oct. 17), to Vanderbilt (Nov. 7) and to FSU (Nov. 28). Considering all of those programs are still being rebuilt by head coaches that haven’t exactly proven themselves at the highest level of college football, that’s a great slate of road games for the Gators.
LSU and South Carolina are battling it out for the toughest November
The first few weeks of both of these schedules are by no means easy but check out the November schedules for each of these teams.
LSU: vs. Alabama, vs. South Carolina, at Auburn and at Texas A&M
South Carolina: vs. Georgia, at LSU, vs. Wofford and at Clemson
It’s unclear what these two did to deserve these November slates but finishing with a .500 record may be the best-case scenario for each of them.