College football’s most grueling schedules of the 2023 season, ranked

Before you lock in your darkhorse College Football Playoff predictions this offseason, take a closer look at the schedules involving your preferred group of teams. Who you play, when and where mean everything in the final four race and within the SEC and Big Ten, the nation’s most grueling schedules ahead of the 2023 season truly jump off the page given the top to bottom strengths of each league.

The Big Ten produced two playoff teams last fall and the SEC won the national championship four-consecutive seasons, including back-to-back titles from Georgia. Ironically, the Bulldogs have a cakewalk this fall by league standards.

Based on a weighted number of metrics including opponents’ 2022 winning percentage, expected contests against nationally-ranked competition, ESPN’s Football Power Index and schedule difficulty compared to other Power Five teams of similar skill levels, we’ve narrowed down college football’s toughest schedules this season into a dozen teams facing daunting slates.

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Here are the nation’s 12 most grueling schedules this fall and our thoughts on each team navigating through treacherous stretches.

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