LOUISVILLE, Ky. - The college football landscape is continuing to shift before out very eyes. Late Monday night, The Athletic reported that the ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 would formally announce an alliance between the three conferences on Tuesday.
One wrinkle of the new 'alliance' would be that the three will work together on scheduling out-of-conference games with one another. Louisville's current OOC slate is booked through 2026 barring any buyouts (or expansion to nine ACC games), but this could bring about some very interesting matchups in the future. Here are five matchups with new alliance members that could be the most interesting and intriguing for the Cardinals:
5. Indiana Hoosiers
Louisville fans won't have to wait long for this one to come to fruition. The Cardinals and Hoosiers actually have a three-game neutral/home-and-home series coming up starting in 2023. Still, with Bloomington just an hour's drive from Louisville, and the emergence of Indiana under Tom Allen, this is a matchup that just makes sense.
Series History: 0-2
Last Meeting: Indiana 21, Louisville 0 (Sept. 13, 1986 - Bloomington, Ind.)
4. Ohio State Buckeyes
This is an entry that doesn't need much explanation. Ohio State is one of a handful of programs who are almost guaranteed to make the College Football Playoff year in and year out, plus the fact that Columbus is just three hours up I-71. Plus, in their brief history, Louisville has twice nearly pulled off road upsets against OSU - losing by one in 1992 and eight the year prior.
Series History: 0-2
Last Meeting: Ohio State 20, Louisville 19 (Sept. 5, 1992 - Columbus, Oh.)
3. Utah Utes
When adding the Pac-12 into the scheduling mix, it's easy to immediately go after heavyweights such as USC or Stanford. However, one that would make sense for Louisville is Utah. The Utes have one of the most underrated coaches in college football in Kyle Whittingham, are consistently good, and are one of just three Pac-12 teams Louisville has ever played (Arizona State, Oregon State). Plus, if it's a road game, Louisville fans could fit in a Utah Jazz game to see Donovan Mitchell.
Series History: 0-4
Last Meeting: Utah 30, Louisville 14 (Sept. 26, 2009 - Salt Lake City, Utah)
2. Purdue Boilermakers
This is another regionalized matchup, but one that has a lot more local storylines for obvious reasons. As many know, Boilermakers head coach Jeff Brohm was born in Louisville, played for Louisville, and highly sought after by Louisville after Bobby Petrino was fired after the 2018 season. Add to the mix some high profile recruiting battles over the last few years, such as Rondale Moore, and you have the recipe for a great matchup.
Series History: 1-0-1
Last Meeting: Louisville 35, Purdue 28 (Sept. 2, 2017 - Indianapolis, Ind.)
1. Oregon Ducks
When you think of the Ducks, the first thing that comes to many people's minds is a high-octane offense that can light up the scoreboard. While they may not be on par with Oregon, Louisville has also generally been regarded in the college football world as an offensive-minded program. Both programs have also been at the forefront of some pretty eye-popping uniform designs from their respective apparel outfitters, Nike and Adidas. This would be a matchup with loads of both local and national appeal.
Series History: 0-0
Last Meeting: No Prior Meeting
(Photo of TreSean Smith, Jackson Winthrop: Jamie Rhodes - USA TODAY Sports)
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