BYU's 2016 football schedule is mostly set, with plenty of big, headline-grabbing games -- including home dates against Mississippi State and UCLA. It appears that recent developments may jeopardize another date with a Mississippi school, as the Cougar's Nov. 19 home date with Southern Miss is now in doubt.
The Eagles signed a new home and home agreement with Kentucky today, with the Eagles heading to Lexington on Sept 3. 2016. The Eagles are now overscheduled for 2016, which means that Southern Miss will need to move either a road date at LSU, or their BYU game, to make it all fit. Jason Munz, a Southern Mississippi beat writer, believes that the BYU game is most likely to get moved.
UPDATE: (2:41 PM ET) Southern Mississippi's AD confirms with this tweet that the BYU/Southern Miss game will be moved.
Southern Miss has moved their series with BYU before, and if it drops off the schedule entirely, it isn't a big loss as far as the on the field product is concerned. After going 12-2 in 2011 under Larry Fedora, the Eagles have won exactly four games total since. A year change does complicate the math for BYU's schedule though, since the Eagles were scheduled to play in Provo in late November. Those dates are hard to come by.
UMass is scheduled to play at Provo in 2016 and doesn't have a date scheduled, and with open dates in late November, the Minutemen could potentially take the spot of the Eagles. Failing that, BYU might look towards an FCS team to fill the slot, or maybe even UAB, who is planning on playing football again in 2016, but likely won't be playing a full FBS schedule.
BYU will play Arizona and WVU on neutral sites, Utah, Michigan State, Boise State and Cincinnati on the road, and UCLA, Mississippi State, UMass and Utah State at home. The Cougars are also contracted to play a road game at UNLV, but that is likely to get pushed to 2017 so BYU can play six true home games a season. Look for any additional games for 2016 to be home games, and likely not against premier competition.