A lot of unanswered questions for Idaho athletic director Rob Spear have finally been answered, and they are very good ones for Idaho.
UF-Idaho game will not be rescheduled. UF will only play 11 regular season games— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) September 3, 2014
Florida will pay Idaho full $975,000 to Idaho & schools agree to play at UF in 2017— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) September 3, 2014
I wouldn't consider this the best possible solution for Idaho, but it's hard to imagine that this is one that doesn't make Spear very happy.
The $975,000 payout was crucial for Idaho to make ends meet in its entire athletic department budget, which is luckily no longer an issue.
Playing the game itself would have been beneficial for the Vandals, especially if it were in December. Idaho is currently under a bowl ban and the extra practice and game snaps would have gone a long way for Idaho coach Paul Petrino and his young team. But that was unlikely to happen.
This solution is very generous of Florida. The Gators depend on these type of games to gather wins and avoid early season stumbles before heading into a usually murderous conference schedule. By giving Idaho its payout when Florida wasn't obligated to builds good will with the Sun Belt and Group of Five programs looking to schedule Florida in the future.
Scheduling Idaho in 2017 is also generous of Florida. The likely seven-figure payout makes for a near perfect 2017 schedule for Idaho, which hosts UNLV and travels to Nevada and Western Michigan that season as well in what could be its final season in the Sun Belt.
If we're really looking at this cup half full for the Vandals, the real season opener for the Vandals is one they're capable of pulling the upset in when they head down to UL Monroe this Saturday.