Georgia Sports Blog FanShop

August 13, 2011

SEC Expansion: Bama and AU to the East?

If the SEC expands to include Texas A&M plus another school slotted for the West, I expect Alabama and Auburn to both move to the East.
    SEC East:
    South Carolina

    SEC West:
    Texas A&M
    Miss State
    Ole Miss
If the league slots FSU or Missouri caliber program in the West, the balance would be reasonable. If they go after Virginia Tech again, then the divisions would basically stay the same as they are now and Bama/AU wouldn't move.

A nine game SEC schedule would likely be a part of a 14 team league. Especially now that the Pac 12 and Big Ten are going in that direction.

What's the benefit to UGA beyond more quality home games? Well...we would get a balanced SEC home/away schedule of 4 home, 4 road and 1 neutral. Today, Georgia has a 4-3-1 SEC schedule on odd numbered years and 3-4-1 on even numbered years. It would actually be easier to keep the Cocktail Party in Athens if the SEC expands to 14 teams and goes to a 9 game league slate.

Imagine a slate like this on an even numbered year:
    Georgia Tech

    CUSA Team
    Div I-AA Team

    Texas A&M
    South Carolina
    Mississippi State

What's your take?



Anonymous said...

I can't think of a way that this doesn't mean we lose more games and go to fewer SEC Championships. Playing Bama instead of Vandy would suck. Competing against Bama, Auburn, Florida, and either Tenn or SC for the SEC would suck. It all sucks. I like it the way it is. LSU would love this set up though.

Anonymous said...

If for example we see the SEC add only A&M and Mizzou, move Auburn to the East. You still would have Bama and Auburn playing as one of their permanent rivals.

Go to a 9 game schedule with 6 games against your division, 2 against permanent rivals and 1 rotation game.

And if we had 9 games, maybe we could make UF-UGA a home and home. We would have more scheduling flexibility if we end that relationship with Jax.

ColumbiaDawg said...

I liked things the way they were. I do not relish the idea of traveling to College Station. It is in the middle of nowhere. Blacksburg is not much better.

Anonymous said...

16 teams, 4 divisions, and semi finals before the championship. 8 conference games. 3 in-division, 4 against another division (SEC East plays SEC North), +1 'rivalry' game (this would have to get creative in the years your rival is in the division you play)

SEC North: UT, UK, VT, VU

Anonymous said...

I think you ment "keep the Cocktail Party in Jacksonville", not Athens.

I don't think those divisions are balanced at all. You've got 5 of the original SEC "big six" on one side and added FSU. The other side is LSU's for the taking every year!

LCUGA said...

Excellent post. I had not even thought about that scenario. In that case, the SEC East would be a murderers row of epic proportions if the perennial big dogs are all competitive.

Josh D. Weiss said...

I think you mean keeping the cocktail party in Jacksonville, not Athens... Unless I misread something.

KornDawg said...

The East would be brutal, but I like the idea of more meaningful home games. It's hard to get fired up to drive two hours for a 1 pm kickoff vs. Directional State U.

HirsuteDawg said...

If Alabama and Auburn move, the Eastern Division would become much stronger than the Western one - even with TAMU and OU added. I like the idea of having a competitive schedule vs a patsy one for home games.

Michael Brazeal said...

I don't think the conference can justify putting Alabama and Auburn in the East and maintain competitive divisions. With the teams you listed in that division structure, teams in the new East will have won 8 of the last 10 SEC championships. I can't see how anyone is going to go for that, except LSU, as someone mentioned above.

If you add two western teams, like Texas A&M, Missouri, or Oklahoma, I think the SEC is going to abandon the geographical model and come up with something like the ACC has. Not sure how they would divided out though. Of course, adding an "eastern" team, like FSU or VT, solves this problem.

Anonymous said...

I agree with others who say those divisions wouldn't be balanced, even if Oklahoma or FSU were added to the West.

My opinion is that the SEC is looking at adding a school to the East and the #1 school on their radar is Virginia Tech for the following reasons:

- It would be fairly easy to incorporate them into the conference with A&M. You could make the 2 of them permanent cross-division opponents without having to mess with any of the other permanent cross-division games.

- You wouldn't need to have any teams switch divisions.

- Good fit in terms of competitive balance (although VT is a better football program at the moment).

- VT is solid academically (#69 on US News National University rankings - would put them 5th in the SEC behind Vandy, Fla, UGA, and A&M).

- Would bring Virginia markets into play (including DC).

- Wouldn't get resistance from South Carolina and Florida the way you would if you looked at Clemson or FSU.

Anonymous said...

Becoming a 14 team league and thus going to a 9 game conference schedule would make out of conference scheduling very static for UGA. It will always be Georgia Tech and 2 cupcakes. Probably no more Chick Fil-A kickoff classic games. And the Ohio State series would likely be cancelled. I'm guessing Clemson in 2013-14 would remain but future games against them would be out of the question.

I'm not complaining or cheering about that. Just pointing it out.

Tony Waller said...

Anon 1:11,
You have just hit on one of my least favorite things about moving to a 9 game schedule. We can cheer or gripe about playing Boise State, but very few fans are excited about the impending battles with Coastal and New Mexico State.

The only upside is having a couple of more in-conference games that are compelling (granted, that'd only be in certain years and only if 'Bama and Auburn move East).

Anonymous said...

That is not reasonably even at all. Cant move Vandy to the West if AU or Bama is the trade.

Cousin Pat said...

I think they'd go with 14 teams and add one to the East because that is the easiest to absorb. I could, of course, be way off base and an addition could come from the West, prompting division reorganization. (I'll use Mizzou? for example.)

SEC Border Division: Mizzou, Arkansas, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Tennessee, S. Carolina

SEC Deep South Divison: Texas A&M, LSU, Ole Miss, Miss St., Auburn, Florida, Georgia

While it looks competitively misplaced at first glance, you have to keep in mind that Alabama - Auburn would be the #1 interdivisional rivalry preserved, as many of the other traditional rivalries are placed in division. I would wager that Tenn - Florida, UGA - USCe, and LSU - Ark would be preserved in the same manner. That leaves the two rotating interdivisional games to balance any strength of schedule concerns.

Copyright 2009 Georgia Sports Blog. Powered by Blogger Blogger Templates create by Deluxe Templates. WP by Masterplan