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June 11, 2010

Texas A&M Considering SEC

It's going to be very tough to pull off, but we're hearing that Texas A&M is receptive to joining the SEC with or without Texas. And the Longhorns, Sooners, Red Raiders and Cowboys are considering the Pac-10 offer with or without Texas A&M.

It'll be very hard for the Aggies to leave without Texas. They would likely need a commitment from Texas that they could still play each every year, but Gene Stallings and the TAMU president are looking at the SEC vs. Pac-10 decision in a very logical manner.

From the standpoint of distance for non-revenue sports and cultural fit, the move to the SEC is a no brainer. From a revenue standpoint, it's no worse than break even given that the Aggies would be able to sign their own TV / electronic rights deal outside of the SEC contract like UGA and Florida have ... both having long term deals worth more than $90 million.

If only the Aggies were added, the SEC would look to the East for the final piece of the puzzle with the most discussed name being Virginia Tech.

In my opinion, a 14 team SEC would move to a nine game conference schedule including a 6-1-2 rotation. All traditional cross divisional rivalries would be kept in place. The only sacrafice the league would be making would be in the area of non-conference scheduling. It would be incredibly difficult for schools like UGA, Florida and South Carolina to schedule non-conference games beyond their non-conference in state rivals and play a nine team SEC slate. But if we were adding Va Tech and Texas A&M to the mix....who cares about playing Oregon.

See Also:
-- The rift in Texas - Sportsline
-- Aggies listening to SEC - Orlando Sentinel
-- Texas has to listen to SEC - Tony Barnhart
-- A&M considering SEC - Sporting News
-- Texas won't hang around - ESPN
-- 16 team conference TV deals not a slam dunk - CNBC



Dante said...

I don't even want Georgia's Jan Brady. I sure as hell don't want Texas' Jan Brady.

Hunkering Hank said...

Wow. I am thrilled beyond measure to potentially be getting TAMU.


I would much rather have the flexibility to play ASU, Colorado, Boise State, etc. as the DAWGS have done the last few years than to have to go to BFE Texas to play the Aggies. Admittedly, we would kick their ass at everything, which is good. But what does TAMU really add other than some (weird) fans and some TV? How does that make the SEC "better?" We might as well add Kansas - they're much better at basketball and equal, if not better (at least recently), in football and it can't be substantially farther away. But I guess they have a lot less fans than TAMU and that's what it comes down to: fans = tv market share = money = conference expansion.

This whole thing sucks.

I think the SEC should just sit pat and not dilute it's brand.

Anonymous said...

This is beyond stupid. The SEC has the premiere product & commands the largest national audience already. There is no incentive nor need to add to what is already the best, elite, most profitable conference in CFB. And adding A&M w/o Texas is a joke. Adding Ark & SCU years ago has done nothing financially beneficial (or otherwise) for the conference. The Addition of A&M would certainly be more of the same.

On the other hand, adding Va Tech would reap financial benefits in a new market, but the bottom line that i think most are forgetting is that the SEC is in no need to add new programs. Period. UGA has no business giving up more control & more money to a team like A&M.

Anonymous said...

So adding Va Tech adds market, but adding Texas doesn't? My goodness I hope you didn't take geography at UGA. A&M brings a huge market. They have rabid fans and a significant portion of Texas. They are long time traditional rivals with LSU and Arkansas and they have that Bama connection. I think A&M would be a great addition, if we are forced to go that route.

And what makes anyone think that the Virginia Politicos are going to let VA Tech go anywhere after the drill they went through to get them into the ACC vice Syracuse?

I like A&M and the thought process, although I doubt this happens.

Anonymous said...

Diluting the brand? The whole key to this thing is looking long-term value, potential TV hh, etc.

Adding Tx A&M give us access to the big TX tv markets and Va Tech brings us the DC market. They are good expansion targets for the conference.

Also with those markets the SEC can probably revisit its own cable/satellite network with its current television partners in the next few years.

The dissolution of the Big XII has come about due to those Presidents/AD's not having the foresight to create their own tv network. The Big 10 did it, stole the Big XII commissioner to work for them and they are the expansion feeder not the bait.

Valley Dawg said...

@ Anon 12:00,

How can you say adding Ark and SC hasn't done anything for the conference? The #1 thing adding those two did was that it gave the SEC an opportunity for a championship football game. Big money.

I could go either way with expansion but as a conference, I would be a little nervous about the Pac 16 having control of half the country geographically and the Big 13-14-16 adding the northeast. I'm not sure the SEC can afford to sit back. If TAMU wants to come over, bring them on. I would love to see VA Tech on the other side too.

Anonymous said...

In our worst season in more than a decade we whipped the shit out of A&M. That's reason enough they don't belong in the SEC nimrods.

Anonymous said...

Yes you dilute the brand when you continue to take on loser teams that don't enhance Texas A&M...especially when you can't convince power programs like Oklahoma & Texas to join your conference.

Why should loyal SEC teams sign on to hand over money to a program like A&M that won't ever compete for championships & pull their own weight? See Arkansas, South Carolina, Vandy, Kentucky, Miss State

Hunkering Hank said...

I'm not talking world domination by the SEC as a business entity, I'm talking about football (and other sports) and what is the BEST conference by far for sports. I don't give a flying fuck at a rolling donut if TAMU brings fans and VA Tech brings TV market share. VA Tech and TAMU. Wow. Who cares? TAMU has been irrelevant forever and VA Tech has only been relevant for few short years (and really only in football). I say if the SEC adds a couple of teams, it adds big boys that create "interesting matchups" on the field. That is what people - people all over the country - want to see. I'll watch Texas play Ohio State not because I went to either school, but because it's a good game. That's why ESPN gave the SEC such a great deal - we have blood rivalries and great matchups week in and week out. TAMU doesn't get the heart pumping for anybody.

I disagree that Arkansas and SC brought nothing to the SEC. They brought us enough teams to have a playoff game and break into two divisions. Sure, it should have been FSU and Texas, but we all know FSU wimped out on that one.

Hobnail_Boot said...

Echo the sentiments of the majority in that I don't see why the SEC should add A&M.

To answer the question posed at the end of the original post: Damon f'n Evans.

DavidSDawg said...

Why is everyone so in love with the idea of Virginia Tech. Blah. If Texas A&M picked them up as the permanent Non divisional game, they could have a Cadet Review at Half Time. Kinda like the Auburn-Clemson Half Time Tiger Tractor Pull and Tater Toss. COme on guys We gotta get the Georgia-Clemson game back on track. Texas A&M and Clemson.
I know its about Dollars and Markets, But Tradition, and Rivalry, Border Wars, You know Old School Stuff That meant something besides money.

Anonymous said...

I'd love to have A&M but I think I'd rather add Missouri than Va Tech. A piece of the Kansas City and St. Louis markets would be huge. I know Va Tech brings some of Washington DC but I think KC-St. Lou bring more to the conference.

DavidSDawg said...

Between Virginia Tech, and Clemson, as a life long Dawg fan bring in Clemson. Other than TV market, what is so sexy about Virginia Tech ? Clemson is a natural fit. Bring in Clemson and we get the Lake Hartwell Flotilla to boot.

Anonymous said...

Somehow I think Mike Slive probably has a better handle on the financials in this particular situation than the rest of us. For example, the Arkies and Cocks added a lot to the league. It's called a championship game and it's a lot of cash.

Expansion is happening. A&M is a better choice than the ACC members who seem to be favored by some of the commentariat. If they are coupled with Va Tech, that would likely be the best 14 team deal. You wonder if maybe Mizzou would make the move to the SEC now, too. They'd be an easy target without all the "we can't go without the other state school" issues Oklahoma seems to have.

Anonymous said...

You yokels don't realize the potential of A&M. The second largest endowment in Texas. The second most followed team outside of Texas, which has expressed NO interest in coming east.

Slive has already said he doesn't want to raid the ACC. If you want to keep up, you need to add markets which adds freakin dollars.

A&M and LSU have a very long history as does Arkansas and A&M. Think outside the damn box. Lordy, maybe Tech fans are right about some of us.

Anonymous said...

I don't see Mizzou joining the SEC, for one thing I live in Columbia but went to UGA. Mizzou doesn't align with the rest of the conference... Culturally they're just different. They definitely don't wear dresses or ties to their games, and trust me they laugh at the traditions of the SEC. The problem with the St. Louis and Kansas City market is that a lot of St. Louis cheers for Illinois instead, and a lot of Kansas City cheers for Kansas or KState. It's also Catholic country up here so Notre Dame has a big presence. Mizzou football doesn't have the impact here that football itself does in other states. The games are never sold out, and people don't really watch them on TV. They were so terrible for so many years that no one really cares. People care more about the pro football teams, which is a key thing lacking in most of the SEC. Plus I can't see them finding true rivalries with anyone in the south. Arkansas maybe, but really they're the red headed step child of the SEC anyway. They're style of football also just doesn't match up.

I think OU or a few other teams could be persuaded if only because we allow declared out of conference rivalries every year. Uga always plays Tech, UF always plays FSU, SC always plays Clemson etc. OU could just declare a rivalry with OSU. The other big thing is the tv deal that was offered to Texas to keep them in the Big 12 (uh 10?). It may keep Texas devoted to the conference, but in a conference where everyone's already tired of Texas' power play it may actually end up forcing some teams out. One way or another Texas will find a way to destroy the conference with their best interest.

The bottom line is until that conference ACTUALLY falls apart the SEC doesn't need to worry about expansion. I don't think we'll lose out by sitting back for a while. There's no rush to add on, and as someone said earlier we're at the top of the game. As a conference we're the best of the best...4 national title games in a row show that. Just our average bowl wins show that.

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