UCLA Football: FBS teams the Bruins have never played

UCLA FootballMandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
UCLA FootballMandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /
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UCLA Football
Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA Today Sports /

Some of these teams may surprise you that UCLA has never played them during its long storied football history.

816. . . . Bulls . 20. team

Team: South Florida Bulls

Conference: American Athletic Conference

Record in 2022: 1-11

2115. . . . Green Wave . 19. team

Team: Tulane Green Wave

Conference: American Athletic Conference

Record in 2022: 12-2

886. . . . Knights . 18. team

Team: UCF Knights

Conference: American Athletic Conference

Record in 2022: 9-6

945. . . . Black Knights . 17. team

Team: Army Black Knights

Conference: Independent

Record in 2022: 6-6

944. . . . Midshipmen . 16. team

Team: Navy Midshipmen

Conference: American Athletic Conference

Record in 2022: 4-8

. . . Eagles . 15. team. 826

Team: Boston College Eagles

Conference: ACC

Record in 2022: 3-9

. Scarlet Knights . 14. team. 883. .

Team: Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Conference: Big Ten

Record in 2022: 4-8

*UCLA will play Rutgers during the 2024 season.

Demon Deacons . 13. team. 889. . .

Team: Wake Forest Demon Deacons

Conference: ACC

Record in 2022: 8-5

. Mountaineers . 12. team. 877. .

Team: West Virginia Mountaineers

Conference: Big 12

Record in 2022: 5-7

UCLA has not played certain teams from the American Athletic (AAC) and Atlantic Coast (ACC) conferences in football for a few reasons. In recent years, UCLA has played a few AAC and ACC teams in non-conference and bowl games. For example, UCLA played Cincinnati in 2018 and 2019 before becoming a member of the Big 12 for this upcoming season and Pitt in their most recent bowl game. However, these games have been the exception rather than the rule. It is likely that UCLA will continue to schedule games along the West Coast in the future as they want games closer to campus as they will be traveling further east more frequently as they become members of the Big Ten in 2024.

In addition, it is also possible that UCLA has simply not had the opportunity to play certain teams from the AAC and ACC conferences throughout the decades of its long-storied program. UCLA like many Power Five conference members, typically schedule their games well in advance, and it can be difficult to find open dates that work for both teams. Additionally, the AAC conference has been in a state of flux in recent years, with teams leaving and joining the conference. The ACC teams generally speaking prefers to schedule games in non-conference games against teams along the east coast. This can make it difficult for UCLA to schedule games against specific teams from these particular conferences.

Ultimately, the decision of which teams to schedule is up to UCLA. The school will likely consider a variety of factors, including scheduling conflicts, strength of schedule, and media markets when making its decisions as mentioned earlier.

However, it is worth noting that UCLA joining the Big Ten conference in 2024, will likely change the school’s scheduling philosophy. The Big Ten has most of its teams located in the Midwest, and it is likely that UCLA will schedule more games against teams closer to them in the non-conference play in the future. Additionally, the Big Ten is located in the Midwest and Northeast United States, which means that UCLA will be more likely to play teams from these regions than it has in the past.