Good on ‘ya, Alabama.

At least somebody out there gives a shit about tradition:

One source said there’s a group of presidents that wants to sit tight, believing the SEC can do better than Missouri and that No. 14 should come from the East. According to both sources, Alabama wants to look East and not risk losing its annual game against Tennessee, while Auburn favors adding Missouri and moving to the Eastern Division.  [Emphasis added.]

There’s an easy way out of this, although it’s not geographically correct.  If the choice is Missouri, just admit the Tigers into the SEC as a member of the East.  This whole thing’s about money, not maps, anyway.

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95 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

95 responses to “Good on ‘ya, Alabama.

  1. Reptillicide

    I don’t think Missouri would join if the stipulation was that they’d be going to the East. The cost for their team travel (for all programs) would be enormous, and I can’t imagine their fans would want to travel that far for every division game, either.

    • citizencrane

      The mileage isn’t that bad when you consider that if Missouri was in the SEC East. Every SEC School it would visit in the East other than UF is CLOSER than to Missouri than the University of Texas is…. They were already travelling a bit.

      • stoopnagle

        Yeah, if you map it out, they’re relatively close to Lexington and Nashville already. Probably a hell of a lot easier for them to get there than Starkville or Auburn.

  2. Just Chuck

    If we put them in the East, do you think anyone in Missouri will notice?

  3. The other Doug

    Missouri make sense if the plan is to go West with the 15th and 16th team. I’m looking at you Oklahoma and Okie State.

    West: TAMU, Missouri, Okla, Okie State, Arkansas, Ole Miss, LSU, and MSU.
    East: Auburn, Bama, UT, Vandy, UGA, UF, USC, and UK.

    • Junkyard Dawg '00

      That is just one sick league you’ve proposed. Do you think the existing presidents and coaches would have the balls to agree to it? As much as I’d like to see it, I doubt it happens. Seems as if we’re destined to see West Virginia and Pittsburgh playing in the SEC, no matter what the east/west alignment may be. Obviously, we’ll be needing to add one more… Notre Dame, maybe?

    • HamDawg11

      I like it.

  4. Go Dawgs!

    Well, good for Alabama. I’d be angry if we had to give up one of our traditional rivalries to accomodate Missouri, too. Not that anybody in charge cares what we think, but the conference was perfect before any of this expansion garbage came along. At this point it’s about minimizing the damage to what we had here. I don’t want Missouri in the East because besides just being geographically incorrect, I also don’t want to take a road trip to Columbia, Missouri every two years.

    • Anon

      Which expansion garbage are you referencing? 1992? Now?

      The early one got us the SECCG, which made the other conferences go that direction, which most would agree is a good thing.

      And simple answer to your last point, no one would be forcing you to go to Columbia. Just don’t go. That’ll show ‘em.

      • KornDawg

        It can’t be any worse than Columbia, SC. And that’s coming from a resident of SC.

      • Go Dawgs!

        I’m referring to the current expansion drama, Anon. The 1992 expansion made sense geographically and also made sense for the schools. The SWC was crashing and Arkansas wanted a new home, South Carolina needed a home, and there you have it. The SEC didn’t lose much in terms of tradition, and gained the SECCG and a lot of cash. ACC expansion and pretty much every conference moneygrab since has been a fumbling mess. It doesn’t make sense beyond dollar signs. And, unfortunately, I will be there when UGA goes to Missouri if they go. God gives me 12 of these a year, I am taking them. Not sure why you’re so upset by my comment in expansion, but if you’re excited about Mizzou coming in, rest easy. You’re likely to get your way, as Mike Slive doesn’t consult me on these things.

        • Mayor of Dawgtown

          Actually Arkansas leaving the SWC is what caused the SWC to crash, not the other way around. SMU getting the death penalty just set the house of cards to shakin.’ Arky leaving caused it to fall.

          • Go Dawgs!

            Well, I do understand that. However, I think it was more or less doomed anyway. The entire process was a lot more natural and a convergence of opportunities. Right now, we’re just like the ACC was during the Miami/VT/BC/Syracuse debacle in that it feels like we’re scrambling around to poach someone in order to not be left behind in the arms race. It feels unpleasant to me, anyway.

            • Carnac the Magnificent

              Me, too. And we have to be careful not to screw up. The Big-8 was a very solid conference before it expanded and let Texas and the other trouble makers in. The loss of the annual Oklahoma-Nebraska rivalry game is what started the Big 12 unraveling. I see a parallel here with the Tennessee-Bama rivalry going down the toilet.

              • AmpedDawg

                Interesting. Who knew that the Big 12 started unraveling in the late 90s…I mean…seeing as how after the 97 season OU and Nebraska played 6 times in the regular season? Talk about a long, slow death.

        • Anon

          I’m not upset in the least, and I assure you I don’t care who they add, or why.

          But if it gets us closer to dismantling the crap factory that is the BCS, I’m all for it.

          • So you’re ready to burn the village in order to save it. ;)

            • Anon

              Only if you can explain to me how expansion “burns the village.”

              • Go Dawgs!

                Well, explain to me how expanding into conferences is going to scuttle the BCS. Certainly, the possibility exists that the champions of these superconferences could be seeded into some sort of playoff, but there’s also no guarantee that would happen. Witness the fact that there is already discussion around the sport about how the BCS could grant more berths to a beefed-up SEC or Pac 14. The bowls are still going to be there, with their agreements and money. The six BCS conferences don’t appear to be going away at this point, as the Big East is refusing to die and is scrambling to add teams. If ESPN wanted the bowl system to go away, it would already be gone. So, the possibility is very real that we’re going to come out of this thing with a 14 team league including Texas A&M, a team to be named, and the BCS happily churning along.

              • If I understand you correctly, you don’t care how they reconfigure the SEC, or which schools play which, as long as you get a playoff.

                If that’s the case, what do you need the SEC for?

    • Mike Niz

      I live near KC & would LOVE to be able to drive 1 1/2 hours to see my Dawgs play! But Mizzou to the SEC makes absolutely no sense, the program brings absolutely nothing to the table. The football & baseball programs are jokes, the basketball program is decent & the womens softball team is pretty good. They can’t even fill the stadium when OU or UT come into town. Kansas would make a better selection because of the basketball program, at least their good at something, unlike MU.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Maybe the SEC should take Kansas, too. And K-State.

        • DWH

          Hell, let’s just split the country down the middle and let the SEC take everything to the right and the PAC-infinity takes everything to the left

  5. Irwin Fletcher

    I still say…go to 16 teams, split into 4 divisions, have a final four, two weekend championship game.

    Oh…and I’m still holding out hope for Notre Dame.

    The other option is to move Bama and Auburn East and move Vandy or Kentucky west…that would be insanity, but could be fun.

    • GoonerDawg

      Why in the world would any UGA fan want AU and Bama in the same division as us? Do you not think in terms of UGA’s best competitive interest with regard to this expansion nonsense? The conference is hard enough as it is. Expand the footprint with the weakest teams possible, and keep the competitive balance as it is. Mizzou in the East would do this.

      • Irwin Fletcher

        “Do you not think in terms of UGA’s best competitive interest with regard to this expansion nonsense? ”

        You’re right…we should probably take Mizzou’s spot in the Big XII or see if the Big East will take us. The SEC is getting too scare-wee!!!

        I like to think that iron sharpens iron. I know you’re probably still in diapers, but you do realize that Auburn, Bama, UGA, Florida, LSU, and Tennessee were all in the same ‘division’ for oh…60 years or so….We’ve got 2 SEC championships and 0 national championships over a stretch of 20 years to show for the current competitive balance.

        Summary: I ain’t skeered.

        • Mayor of Dawgtown

          While I do not necessarily agree with your reasoning I agree with your premise. I personally feel that the only way a true SEC champion should be selected would be for all the teams in the SEC to play each other every year. That is possible with a 12 member league (11 games) but impossible with a 14 member league. And you are right–UGA won many more championships under the old SEC arrangement than with the current arrangement.

          • GoonerDawg

            The old arrangement with 10 teams only required 6 conference games to be counted. When the conference was formatted that way UGA dis not regularly play UT or LSU.

            • Carnac the Magnificent

              Correct GD, nor Bama. that was one of the reasons UGA and Bama were co-champions a couple of times under Dooley’s reign. I always thought that was a flaw in the old system. What should have happened was when the NCAA allowed the college schedule to increase to 11 games the SEC should have gone to a complete round-robin schedule with each team playing every other team. That would have still allowed an OOC rival game (for us, Ga Tech) and either a cupcake to open up the season or an occasional home and away against a power from another conference. Alas, it didn’t happen.

    • JBJ

      I said this same thing a week or two ago. I like the idea, but having an extra game seems to be the limiting factor. You may be able to choose the top two division leaders to put in the championship game. That would stir controversy, which I’m not convinced is such a bad thing.

  6. 9 conference games. boom. problem solved. you’re welcome.

    • Red Dawg

      Why not 10? Move it back to 2 permanent rivalries.

      Play the other 6 teams in your division, 2 permanent rivalries, 2 rotating, Tech and cupcake. It’s brutal but Alabama is happy, you play non-permanent teams with the same frequency you are now and we as fans have more quality football. Let teams that don’t have a Tech or FSU play the marquee interconference match-ups.

    • Just Chuck

      The SEC played a lot of years before expansion and the addition of the division structure where we declared a champion even though you didn’t play everybody. Could we go back to something like that, play all but one of the teams in your division and rotate the team left off the schedule? Preserves the traditional cross division rivalries we have now.

  7. Cmill

    Never thought I’d say this… thank God for Alabama!

  8. Bryant Denny

    Why not just kick Auburn out and stay at 12?

  9. I hope the expand-at-all-costs crowd is starting to see what a stupid, unnecessary can of worms we’ve opened by inviting Texas A&M in the first place. Now we’ve got to hunt around for a 14th team, and it appears we’ve set our sights on a program whose tradition is modest at best and who has declared openly they’d rather be in the Big Ten. Sounds like a match made in heaven!

    I realize it’s too late to give Texas A&M back, but if we’re gonna keep them, let’s at least set criteria for a 14th team that go beyond “Well, fuck it, they were just sitting there.” (That seems to be our only reasoning behind grabbing the Aggies in the first place.) Let’s find a program that wants to be in the SEC and that won’t force us to sweat bullets coming up with ways to keep all our traditional rivalries intact *coughVirginiaTechorWVUcough*. And for God’s sake, let us please stop at 14. The WAC has already proven what a fool’s errand it is to try and run a 16-team conference, to the point that the Pac-12, given a golden opportunity to go to 16 (with four good-to-elite programs, no less), took a pass. Why should we be the conference that takes the first flying leap on that concept when we’re already the best in the nation and everyone knows it?

    • stoopnagle

      Now, Doug, really: “(That seems to be our only reasoning behind grabbing the Aggies in the first place.)” You know better.

      Honestly, I’ve lost all interest in MU. Give me UNC or NC State or Va Tech or let’s just sit at 13.

      • HVL Dawg

        NC State should be begging for an invite. The old ACC members have always sneered down at the Wolfpack. State should tell UNC, Duke and Wake to screw themselves and offer to deliver Charlotte and Raleigh to the SEC on a platter.

        State cares more about football than basketball, would be a great cultural and geographic fit and would deliver new eyeballs.

        UNC is a non starter. The AD is a dead man walking and the last year’s academic scandal in football has profoundly rocked the people in charge. And by the way- nothing will ever disrupt their annual end of the season basketball fight with Duke.

        • stoopnagle

          I’ll freely admit that UNC is a pipe-dream. Why would they leave a conference they effectively run for one run by Alabama?

      • Well, there’s such a thing as exaggeration for effect. Does Texas A&M add a new (and rabid) fan base and inroads to new TV markets and new recruiting strongholds? Sure.

        But there’s also such a thing as the law of diminishing returns. Does TAMU add enough new cash that the travel, scheduling and revenue-sharing headaches are worth it? Not necessarily. As far as recruiting, UGA is situated in such a talent-rich state that we literally can’t sign every four-star prospect within our borders because the NCAA won’t let us; Mark Richt’s not gonna suddenly go knocking on doors in Lubbock and Odessa just because we’ve got to play the Aggies a couple times every five years. And as far as the TV markets, who cares — we’ve already got the nationwide exposure of CBS, and whenever it came time to renegotiate our deal with ESPN, we’d be the highest-paid conference in the country with or without Texas.

        Sure, we had reasons for grabbing A&M, but I don’t think they were terribly well-examined ones. This whole deal still seems closer to “kid with something shiny dangled in his face” than “shrewd long-term business decision.”

    • W Cobb Dawg

      Agree. You’ve summed it all up very well, Captain.

  10. stoopnagle

    Adding MU could mean moving Vandy to the west and both Bama and AU to the east to keep the Bama-UT game going. Frankly, the Bama-UT game isn’t *that* important to me.

  11. HVL Dawg

    Your suggestion makes a lot of sense which got me thinking about an off topic question:

    I wonder how the Senator would rank the SEC bloggers, those who are not affiliated with a mainstream meadia outlet, on their ability to sway opinion in the league. (No offense intended to the hard working mainstream media bloggers out there trying to scratch a living, but their access, distribution vehicles, and influences are just different.)

    Might be an interesting off season exercise……

  12. WarD Eagle

    This Auburn man thinks we should pick up lowly ECU and wait while their program improves with SEC money and competition.

    State of NC is a good football market w/o good football.

  13. H-Town Dawg

    I think the message has been sent to MU that they’re making a mistake by attempting to portray all this as THEIR deal to be done, depending on whether or not they are willing to “settle” for the SEC. The reality is that THEY are the ones who are crying about their situation and they HOPE that the SEC will show mercy and let them in.

    It’s not a question of “is the SEC good enough for Missouri?” but rather is Missouri good enough for the SEC.

  14. Rival

    Can we stipulate the Mizzou has to pick a new mascot?

    How many Tigers can the SEC handle?

  15. hassan

    Purely my personal opinion.

    They Don’t have the football swagger, but Maryland would make the most sense to me. Geographically they may a lot of sense, and will bring in the TV revenues of the beltway market. NC State not a bad look as well.

  16. I’m not for Missouri joining the conference because I think we can do better. But if you’re hangup is tradition, would you prefer to to drop SC and Arkansas and go back to a 10 team league, or add GT and Sewanee and Tulane back in? The SEC has been slowly expanding for years. This is nothing new.

    • Except nothing has ever affected the Tennessee-Alabama game before.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        And, if you will recall, the thing that caused the Big 12 (formerly Big 8) to get shaky in the first place was splitting into divisions and losing the Nebraska-Oklahoma annual rivalry game. We should all hate to see the SEC making the very same mistake.

  17. IM

    I think Tulane is perfect. Original member, good academics, and a good excuse to go to the Big Easy.

  18. Dawginwashington

    I still don’t understand why we aren’t considering trying to add Clemson. They have a HUGE following nationwide, and it’s obvious that they care about football. They are a decent academic institution, and they have good baseball and basketball teams as well.

  19. Will Trane

    Why 14? Court Baylor. Add Baylor. Then balance Baylor with someone along the east coast. Say Wake Forest. Now we have the geography and denominations covered. Baylor in the West. Auburn to the East along with the Deacons. And 16. West Virginia. Damn what a conference. Two Bears, two dogs, two cats, a deacon, a mountaineer, an elephant, a volunteer [close to those mountaineers], a gator, a ship’s captain, a farmer / mechanic, and etc. If only Tulane and Tech had remained. Will Slive really tell us what is behind all of this. I would like to see a clear financial path here.
    Rest assure UGA will not come out on top with that bunch in Alabama, like we never come out with the NCAA. Now what is the status of our player still in limbo with the NCAA. So much for game clocks and play clocks in reaching some conclusion on this. 14, 15, 16, Will it remain the SEC or will it be the Super or Big SEC. Get 16 so it will be the Sweet 16 SEC. And then if there is a parting of the ways in a couple of years from teams who have a change of heart, and those schools from the old SWC seem to have that frequently, the SEC would almost return to its original number. Hell, just ask Tulane.

  20. Slaw Dawg

    If MO must come in, then, sure, why not add them to the “East?” It’s quite a distance from there to UF and SC, but otherwise roughly comparable in travel times to East schools and West. Bama could keep its old West rivalries (LSU, MSU, Miss) while AU could resume its UT and UF wars.

    But these feel like rationales for letting in a school that, while perfectly okay as in institution and in a nice town and a great state, just doesn’t have historical ties to the SEC. TAMU has old Ark and LSU rivalries, has at times played other SEC schools and has shared coaching links with a couple. Similarly, SC and Ark had existing rivalries and shared histories with some SEC programs (e.g., the UGA-SC game now means more than it did). There’s something of the “expand for the sake of expansion” to the MO option, no shared rivalries or histories (other than A&M).

    If twere up to me, I’d say “Missouri, you’re a great school, we’ll be happy to talk to you if and when we add 15 and 16, but now isn’t the time.” But I confess that if we add historical ties to (1) must not be a current in-state rival; (2) must be in Southeastern or border state and (3) strong athletic and academic programs, we have a very limited pool from which to draw!

  21. 4.0 Point Stance

    The easy way out, and the most sensible, is to bring in Florida State. But if the rumors of the Eastern bloc png’ing their rivals is true, it’ll never happen. Hell any of those three teams- FSU/Ga Tech/Clemson – would make more sense than Mizzou.

    • Dog in Fla

      FSU and Tech want no part of the SEC. FSU already took the easy way out by joining the ACC instead of the SEC. Same goes for Tech for quitting the SEC in the first place. Clemson? We’ve already got the limit on Tigers.

      Credit goes to A&M for signing up, and Missouri for wanting to sign up, for SEC tours of duty. At least they’re not chickenshit about facing tough competition.

  22. It would make far more sense to move one of the Mississippi schools east.

    But my solution for the 14 team league is to scrap the divisions entirely. Each team has 3 permanent opponents and plays 5 of the others home-and-home for two years, then the other 5 home-and-home for two years. So even if you aren’t playing a rival every year, you still get them 2 of every 4 years. I for one could live without playing UT or the Cocks every year if it meant regular trips to MO and A&M. The two teams with the best record (and whatever tie-breakers) play in the SECC.

    Before you give me the “we must have divisions for the championship game requirement” argument: this is the SEC. It’s our sandbox, not the NCAAs. What are they going to do, kick the SEC out?

  23. Hobnail_Boot

    For those saying MU to the SEC East makes no sense, check out the interactive map on http://mizzou2sec.com/

  24. watcher16

    Do we really need 3 teams with a Tiger mascot in the SEC, let alone the same division?!

  25. Leaving less and less wiggle room for scheduling is a probem. What about the cupacake schools who give SEC teams a reprive from the conference beating that players take? And what about teams like GA Southern and Troy State and LaTech that look forward to making a little money for their programs? With only the SEC champ having a shot at the NC game, it’s going to be a long, long, long shot to get there. Probably no SEC team will be able to go undefeated or have only 1 loss…This plays into the hands of the smaller conferences and the independents….After a few years of suffering thru SuperConference scheduling, the next big wave will be for perenially top twent teams to become independent…You heard it here first..within the next few years there will be a move towards independence.

  26. Macallanlover

    Good suggestion Senator, Mizzou being in the East is no big deal should they join the SEC. Not sure the Bama TN game is as big a deal as they all seem to think, but I did like that the, historically, six best teams all had to play one another as their designated out-of-division rival each year. Maintaining some level of balance is an important part of why the SEC title means so much, and is the best title earned on the field in CFB. You cannot do anything about the rotational balance getting out of whack every once in a while.

  27. There is an easy and clear solution to all of this BCS, “I’m leaving this conference and joining this conference,” bullshit… Sudden death playoffs!!! Top 25 + 7 wild cards. 32 teams, 5 wins means you’re the champion. Seems logical, right? Would stop all of this “I NEED to be in this conference to win a title” crap. And maybe Boise State might get somewhat of a shot, poor bastards.