Archive for October, 2011

SEC Alignment Update

Posted: October 18, 2011 in Uncategorized

So it’s been a month since I have bothered posting and it looks like nothing much has been missed thus far. Texas A&M has now been approved to join the SEC and will begin their new conference affiliation on July 2012. Mizzou is still on hold, but there is news today that Mizzou will hold two Board of Curators meetings Thursday, 10/20 and one on Friday, 10/21. The first meeting on Thursday has been scheduled for a long time and will be a general meeting to discuss daily business. The last one on Thursday and the one held on Friday are called “Executive” meetings and will be closed to the public. The Executive meetings are when it is thought that Conference alignment for MU will be discussed and after those meetings, it is expected that Mizzou will announce they are indeed leaving the Big 12 and will put in an application to the SEC. I feel confident in saying that they wouldn’t make this statement unless they had assurances from SEC Commish Mike Slive that they did have enough votes of approval from University Presidents to enable them to join the conference. At this point, I would be completely shocked if by next Monday the Missouri Tigers are not a member of the SEC.

So assuming that they will indeed join the SEC, where do they fit in? If they go to the SEC West when they join, that will force one of the West teams to move to the East to balance out the divisions at seven teams each. Auburn has already volunteered to move to the East to allow this to happen, but they require that the annual Iron Bowl with in-state rival Alabama continue, as it certainly should. However, this move will mean that the annual rivalry between Alabama and Tennessee would be lost and that is causing much discussion and hubbub. The third Saturday in October used to be THE big game in this part of the country with some awesome games played on both sides of the ball throughout the long standing series, but recently my Tennessee team hasn’t been holding up it’s end of this rivalry and since the game has been moved from the third Saturday, the game has lost some of it’s luster. I’m a bit torn as to whether I want this rivalry to continue. I would love to see it continue, if both teams can manage to keep the game competitive. I’m afraid though, that the glory years of Bear Bryant and Johnny Majors are gone and this game will become nothing more than just that…a game.

Another scenario that has been gaining steam recently is for Missouri to join the Eastern division temporarily (2-3 years is the common time frame I am seeing). This is presumably how long it would take for the SEC to add two more teams and become a 16 team Super Conference. You would assume those two teams would come from somewhere along the Eastern end of the US, possibly the ACC or Big East conference. There is also rumored to be a Gentleman’s agreement within the SEC to not add teams from states where there is already representation (sorry Memphis, Clemson, Georgia Tech, or FSU). If this is the case, then I expect West Virginia to be added, even though I think that would be a horrible choice. Va Tech has also been mentioned, but any talk of that has been very muted lately. I would prefer to see North Carolina and Virginia Tech join from the East. But again, I haven’t heard or read anything mentioning those two teams recently.

So now we wait until Friday to see what Mizzou will do. I don’t think Mike Slive will leave the door open for them for much longer. He needs to get someone into that 14th spot so schedules can be drawn up. I’ve read that the schedules for the following year has to be done by December of the current year. No way to draw up a schedule with 13 teams and make it fair to all involved. So it will now be sooner, rather than later that this will be settled.