College football is an extremely physical sport, and most players play banged up, even with a week off between games. Unfortunately, not every school is even given that much time to recover.
Toledo football is in the middle of a particularly grueling stretch.
The Rockets fell to Buffalo, one of the MAC's top teams, on Saturday, 31-17.
Now, they have a quick turnaround, traveling up to Western Michigan for a Thursday night game in Kalamazoo.
After that, they have yet another short week, hosting Ball State on Wednesday, Oct. 31.
That is three MAC games in a 12 game span for Toledo football, and people have noticed how ridiculous that is.
The Bladecolumnist David Briggs called the back-to-back quick turnarounds "pure insanity."
Somehow, the MAC and the little devil on its shoulder have outdone themselves.
The Rockets this year will transition into their weeknight schedule with a road game on four days of rest. Which is crazy, but hey, at least the wearied players will then receive extra time to allow their bodies to recover, catch up on classwork, and ... who are we kidding? Toledo plays on short rest the next week, too.
After a black-and-blue Saturday game against Buffalo, this is the Rockets’ itinerary: Bus to Kalamazoo on Wednesday, play Western Michigan on Thursday, come home overnight Friday morning, return to action Wednesday against Ball State.
Three games in 12 days. Back-to-back short weeks. Pure insanity.
To make matters worse, Toledo isn't the only team dealing with it. Ball State has the same schedule, culminating in the two programs' head-to-head match-up.
The Cardinals lost to Eastern Michigan on the 20th, and then travel to Ohio on Thursday, before the Wednesday game in Toledo.
The weeknight games give the MAC added exposure that they don't get on Saturday, when the major conference teams dominate the day. However, when transitioning from weekends to weeknights without a bye, you wind up with short weeks like this.
That's bad enough in the NFL, where basically every player rails against the Thursday Night Football games that they endure once a year. Throw in the fact that these players are unpaid, and have classes to deal with.
Add in the very real player safety concerns, and a few extra eyeballs on ESPN don't seem worth putting players through a grind like this.