Conference USA announced its 2015 schedule on Monday, which can be seen here. Thanks to the way the calendar falls, the 2015 football season will be a week shorter than the last two seasons. As you'll see below, that created some unfortunate predicaments for a pair of C-USA teams.
A few highlights:
- Charlotte joins the league this fall, taking dearly departed UAB's schedule slot in the East Division. The 49ers will play their first game as an FBS program at Georgia State on Thursday, Sept. 3, play their first home game as an FBS opponent against Presbyterian a week later, open C-USA play at Middle Tennessee on Sept. 19, and play their C-USA opposite Florida Atlantic on Sept. 26.
- Power Five programs visiting C-USA campuses: Purdue (at Marshall, Sept. 5), Miami (at Florida Atlantic, Sept. 12), Vanderbilt (at Middle Tennessee, Oct. 3), Mississippi State (at Southern Miss, Sept. 5), N.C. State (at Old Dominion, Sept. 19) and Kansas State (at UTSA, Sept. 12).
- North Texas may have one of the most taxing schedules in the country. The Mean Green opens with a bye, then plays 12 straight weeks through the end of the season - with only five of those games in Denton. They also play a late-season stretch of four road games in five weeks, including trips to Louisiana Tech, Tennessee and Middle Tennessee in consecutive weeks in November. Talk about brutal.
- The other contender for FBS's most taxing slate? Florida International. FIU doesn't take a week off until Nov. 28 - the final week of the regular season - and opens its run of 12 straight games with four of its first five on the road. The Panthers play just five home games this fall, and none of them in back-to-back weeks.
- UTEP opens with three straight road games, with trips to Arkansas, Texas Tech and New Mexico State. The Miners don't play their home opener until Sept. 26.
- Rice joins North Texas and UTEP in facing a stretch of three straight road dates. The Owls won't have to hop on an airplane thought, visiting Texas on Sept. 12, North Texas on Sept. 19 and Baylor on Sept. 26.
- Old Dominion plays one road game between the weeks of Sept. 5 and Oct. 24. The Monarchs face Norfolk State, N.C. State, Appalachian State in consecutive weeks, visit Marshall, take a week off and then host Charlotte on Oct. 17.