The 2012 ACC football schedule is set to drop at some point in the next two weeks, give or take. But that shouldn't stop us from postulating on what Boston College's 2012 schedule will look between now and then, now should it?
With several non-conference dates previously announced, we can make an educated guess as to which program BC will face to open up the 2012 campaign. Barring some late changes to the season's opening weekend, it's looking more and more like BC will open the season against either the Eagles' I-AA opponent (Maine) or against an ACC opponent for the first time since the 2007 season.
Of BC's eight ACC opponents in 2012, the following are already scheduled to face a non-conference opponent:
Clemson -- vs. Auburn (Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic, Atlanta, Ga.)
Florida State -- Murray State
Maryland -- William & Mary
N.C. State -- vs. Tennessee (Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic, Atlanta, Ga.)
That leaves BC with either Wake Forest (road), Miami (home), Georgia Tech (road) or Virginia Tech (home) for the opening weekend's opponent.
However, as much as we'd like a full offseason to prepare for Paul Johnson and the Yellow Jackets' triple option offense, it now looks like both Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech are off the board for the Eagles season opener.
The Jackets will play their first game on Labor Day at Virginia Tech.— The Hive GT (@TheHiveGT) January 25, 2012
With the Techs battling it out on Labor Day, that leaves BC with just three possible opponents for the opener -- at home vs. Maine, at home vs. Miami or on the road at Wake Forest.
Wake Forest has yet to schedule its I-AA game against Liberty, while all four non-conference dates for the Canes are set (including that problematic regular season finale against USF). Given the fact that Wake Forest and Miami don't face one another this season, it seems likely that BC would then open the season at home against Miami while Wake hosts Liberty on opening weekend.
The Eagles week 2 opponent is also slowly coming into focus, with the following non-conference dates scheduled for the weekend of September 8.
Clemson -- Ball State
Florida State -- West Virginia
N.C. State -- at Connecticut
Maryland -- at Temple
Georgia Tech -- at Middle Tennessee State
Miami -- at Kansas State
This leaves the Eagles with either Maine, Wake Forest or Virginia Tech as its week 2 opponent. Given the fact that the Hokies are reportedly playing on Labor Day, I'd assume that the conference will give VT week 2 off, or schedule the Hokies I-AA opponent Austin Peay that weekend. If that's the case, then Wake Forest becomes BC's logical week 2 opponent as the Deacons are the only other program without a non-conference date scheduled that weekend (with I-AA Liberty yet to be scheduled).
Given the above and the early non-conference schedules tentatively schedule, BC's 2012 schedule then looks something like this:
Sep. 1 -- Miami
Sep. 8 -- at Wake Forest
Sep. 15 -- at Northwestern
Sep. 22 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Sep. 29 -- Clemson / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Oct. 6 -- at Army
Oct. 13 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Oct. 20 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Oct. 27 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Nov. 3 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Nov. 10 -- Notre Dame
Nov. 17 -- Clemson / at Florida State / at Georgia Tech / Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / BYE
Nov. 24 -- Maine / Maryland / at N.C. State / Virginia Tech
While it would have been nice to get all that extra time to prepare for the Yellow Jackets, hosting Miami in the season opener isn't a bad consolation prize. Miami will be decimated by graduation and early departures for the NFL Draft next season, essentially be breaking in a brand new team. The Eagles return a ton of starters on both sides of the ball.
Hosting Miami in the opener is as good an opportunity as any to notch only the third program win over the Canes since the Miracle in Miami.