Texas Tech added a real toughie to their schedule for 2024 and 2026. It was reported on Thursday that the Red Raiders have agreed to a two-game series with Abilene Christian, and not surprisingly, both games with be played at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lobbock, TX.
“Those two games are a long way off, but we’re extremely excited to add Texas Tech to our schedule,” ACU director of athletics Lee De León said. “We’ve been working on this contract with Tech for a while, and I appreciate (Texas Tech director of athletics) Kirby Hocutt for working with us and getting ACU on the Texas Tech schedule. I know our fans in West Texas and in the Panhandle will be excited to see the Wildcats playing in Lubbock.”
Well, I’m glad the Wildcat fans are excited for the matchup, because just about no one else is. Let’s face it, ACU has no business being on the same field as the Red Raiders. Are we even sure they have a football team? They are there to collect a check, and that’s it.
And yes, they do have a team. I looked it up. They went a whopping 2-7 last season in the Southland Conference.
I understand that teams like ACU live and die on being able to schedule these kinds of games. They exchange getting whipped up on for three to four hours to collect a check that might fund the entire athletic department for the rest of the year. And while getting smoked probably isn’t all that enjoyable for the players, they do get to experience big time college athletics for at least a little while.
However, for Texas Tech, scheduling this kind of game is a lose-lose. Just the name of Abilene Christian on the schedule is embarrassing. And if they somehow manage to keep it close, that isn’t going to do a whole lot for the confidence of the team. And if ACU were to win…. that’s a whole new level of embarrassment Wreck Em Nation doesn’t even want to think about. And no, it’s not very likely that the Red Raiders will fall to ACU, but as long as they step onto the field together, there is the chance.
The only plus for the Red Raiders is that they get to use ACU as a warmup before facing much more serious competition. In 2024 the Red Raiders are scheduled to play Oregon the next week, and in 2026 they will face Colorado State following the ACU game. There is something to be said for the “warm up” game. However, I’m not sure a matchup like ACU can really tell you anything about your team. At least by playing a team like UTEP or UTSA, it is enough of a challenge to find what you need to work on. But hey, at least they aren’t playing a team like ACU in week 12. That’s more than some teams can say. You know, from that other conference.