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Air Force Lacrosse Schedule: Windependence

The Falcons will play as one of two independents this coming season.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

PROGRAM SCHEDULE PROPAGANDA: PRESS RELEASE
THIS IS WHY WE FIGHT: THE SCHEDULE

Here are some schedule highlights and games of note:

Lucky Seven
Various

The existence of an independent necessitates a prism of conference light. Air Force will experience that this coming spring, facing 15 teams from seven different conferences. The only leagues that the Falcons will avoid in 2015 are the Ivy League, THUNDERDOME!, and Big Ten, focusing primarily on competition from the Southern Conference (six opponents) and the MAAC (four opponents) (those two conferences provide Air Force with two-thirds of the team's foes for this coming spring). That's an impressive coverage of the nation, getting heat from virtually all of the country's various offerings. It is somewhat disappointing, though, that the Falcons could not find a way to get a Big Ten team on the slate: With two programs in the Big Ten formerly having a relationship with Air Force as a recent conference peer to the Falcons, playing one of those two teams would have offered a degree of bridged continuity to whatever stands in front of Air Force in 2016.

Coming in Hot
February 28: at Furman; March 8: v. VMI; March 21: at High Point; March 28: Jacksonville; April 4: v. Bellarmine; April 11: at Mercer

Air Force will join the Southern Conference for the 2016 season, but that hasn't stopped the Falcons from accelerating their future conference alignment. Six of the Southern Conference's seven programs will dot Air Force's slate this coming spring, leaving Richmond as the only program that Air Force will delay a thunder fight. Interestingly, the Falcons will play host to only one of its six future rivals in 2015; all other games are on the road or at neutral site locations this season. Loading up 40 percent of the team's slate with Southern Conference teams may not yield Air Force a ton of power points in the context of strength of schedule, but it does offer the Falcons an opportunity to generate a little bit of history with their future peers.

May Comes Early
February 2: at Duke; February 21: at Denver

Air Force will play two teams in 2015 that participated in the 2014 NCAA Tournament: Duke and Denver. That isn't a massive departure from recent history for the Falcons: In 2014, Air Force played two teams -- Denver and Ohio State -- that participated in the 2013 NCAA Tournament; in 2013, Air Force played four teams -- North Carolina, Lehigh, Loyola, and Denver -- that participated in the 2012 NCAA Tournament in 2012; and in 2012, Air Force played one team -- Denver -- that participated in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. The team's two dates against opposition that engaged in a May adventure last season is in-line with the program's recent history of scheduling high-end competition.