Updated: Jun 26
I was very happy when I saw the 2024 Texas Longhorns SEC schedule announced. I had an immediate thought, but I needed to crunch the numbers.
My thought was I think the Texas Longhorns MIGHT have an easier schedule in 2024 in the SEC than they do in 2023 in the Big 12. I tested this theory.
I know you are thinking I am crazy. Well, let's look at the numbers.
IF you take the Texas opponents record in 2021 and 2022 and add the wins and losses, you can get a sense of how good that team SHOULD be in 2023 barring MAJOR personnel loses. Now, I admit upfront projecting that to 2024 becomes far more questionable with this method, but there is no other objective data to use.
What does this analysis look like?
The combined 2021-2022 record of the 2023 UT opponents is 190-125- or an average 0.598-win percent.
The teams I shaded red I think are wins. The game shaded in black I assume is a loss. The games shaded in green are toss-ups. If one assumes that the Longhorns win half of the toss-ups, Texas will have a 9-3 record and have a 7-2 conference schedule with a likely shot in the Big 12 championship game.
The combined 2021-2022 record of the 2024 UT opponents is 189-123- or an average 0.591-win percent.
That is right, SLIGHTLY worse than 2023.
I have boldly predicted the 2024 schedule results as I did 2023. I think as of today, I would predict a 9-3 record or the same as I did for 2023.
Full disclosure- I don't REALLY think the 2024 schedule is worse, but I do think if one looks at it by this method that is the way it scores out.
One of the factors inflating the 2023 schedule is the new Big 12 schools- Houston and BYU that have high win percentages from their non-power 5 schedules. IF we adjust all non-power 5 win percentages down by 0.200 to adjust for their easier competition, the analysis looks like this.
This would make the 2024 schedule slightly harder than the 2023 schedule.
Several folks have vehemently told me that they think my method here is flawed. So, let me give you another. The folks at College Football News have a 1-133 ranking of all FBS teams. Let's put the current rankings against the 2023 and 2024 schedules.
I made a mistake with ULM and just fixed it.
Maybe this schedule analysis is easier to understand. Again, this shows that the schedule is basically the same.
How you view this may come down to this question. Rank these four teams:
I think the big story really is that the 2024 schedule is NOT massively more difficult than the 2023 schedule. The SEC was very fair to Texas with the SEC 2024 opponents. Sooner got it much worse.
I AM NOT SAYING THE BIG 12 is better than the SEC. I AM saying the big 12 schedule Texas got in 2023 which was one of the harder schedules projects to be about the same as the 2024 schedule Texas got in the SEC. The folks at CBS Sports ranked Texas's schedule 15th out of 16th in the SEC in difficulty.
The Texas Longhorns team says they are focused on 2023. Given this, that is probably a good thing. In the least, 2023 is the last season to get ready for the SEC. Make it count Longhorns.
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