Ranking Big Ten 2024 football schedules by difficulty: How hard is Oregon's year?

Ohio State Buckeyes tight end Cade Stover (16) gets the ball knocked away from him by Oregon Ducks cornerback Verone McKinley III (23).
Ohio State Buckeyes tight end Cade Stover (16) gets the ball knocked away from him by Oregon Ducks cornerback Verone McKinley III (23). / Kyle Robertson/Columbus Dispatch via

The Big Ten is gaining four teams and the Oregon Ducks look like one of the top dogs as they prepare for their first season in the conference.

As Oregon, UCLA, USC, and Washington get ready to officially leave the Pac-12 behind, which Big Ten teams are facing the most difficult schedules for the upcoming season?

The Ducks are set to play the defending national champion Michigan Wolverines on the road and play host to the ever-dominant Ohio State Buckeyes to kick off Oregon's tenure in the Big Ten.

However, Oregon has an extremely easy non-conference schedule to start its schedule.

Here are the Big Ten rankings based on teams’ strength of schedule in the upcoming 2024 season:

18. Indiana Hoosiers
17. Nebraska Cornhuskers
16. Maryland Terrapins
15. Ohio State Buckeyes
14. Illinois Fighting Illini
13. Penn State Nittany Lions
12. Rutgers Scarlet Knights
11. Michigan State Spartans
10. Oregon Ducks
9. Washington Huskies
8. Minnesota Golden Gophers
7. Northwestern Wildcats
6. Wisconsin Badgers
5. Iowa Hawkeyes
4. Purdue Boilermakers
3. Michigan Wolverines
2. UCLA Bruins
1. USC Trojans

Dan Lanning and the Ducks land right in the middle of the conference rankings because their schedule is right in the middle of the difficulty spectrum.

Oregon's 2024 schedule

  • Oregon vs. Idaho – Aug. 31
  • Oregon vs. Boise State – Sept. 7
  • Oregon at Oregon State – Sept. 14
  • Oregon at UCLA – Sept. 28
  • Oregon vs. Michigan State – Oct. 5
  • Oregon vs. Ohio State – Oct. 12
  • Oregon at Purdue – Oct. 19
  • Oregon vs. Illinois – Oct. 26
  • Oregon at Michigan – Nov. 2
  • Oregon vs. Maryland – Nov. 9
  • Oregon at Wisconsin – Nov. 16
  • Oregon vs. Washington – Nov. 30

Oregon's toughest opponents at home will be the Ohio State Buckeyes, Washington Huskies, and Illinois Fighting Illini (most likely in that order).

The Ducks luckily have a fairly easy road schedule beyond the game in Ann Arbor. However, the game against the Wisconsin Badgers could be surprisingly tricky for Oregon.

If Oregon's schedule goes according to many expectations, the Ducks will finish the regular season undefeated (12-0) and head to the Big Ten Championship in its first season as a part of the conference.

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