8 + 1

How much are some conferences struggling against going to a nine-game conference schedule.  Enough for at least some folks in the ACC and SEC to consider something along these lines.

In addition to considering a nine-game conference schedule, ACC officials have also broached the idea of a model in which the conference would play eight league games and one SEC team every year, according to several sources from both conferences.

I really doubt that comes together.  I’m not the only one.

The SEC source said he did not see a scenario where all 14 SEC schools would agree to it, but there may be a scenario in which the SEC could match some teams against the ACC, particularly if those SEC teams were having trouble finding a suitable BCS nonconference opponent.

It is unlikely that the SEC would make all its teams play the ACC on the final week of the season, when the Auburn-Alabama already game steals the show.

Two SEC sources said the conference was also considering more regular matchups with the Big 12.

I don’t know why they keep fighting a nine-game arrangement.  It’s the easiest scenario for the conferences to control.  But it’s pretty clear everybody wants to placate their new conference overlords ESPN with more quality product.

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27 Comments

Filed under ACC Football, ESPN Is The Devil, SEC Football

27 responses to “8 + 1

  1. Dawgoholic

    This can be easily solved. Make the first divisional tiebreaker number of wins vs. non-conference BCS schools in the event one of the tied teams has played no non-conference BCS schools.

    No harm if you lose your non-BCS game but it hurts teams that don’t play any non-BCS games.

    • Slaw Dawg

      Best durn idea of heard all day, ‘holic.

    • The other Doug

      Under your proposal everyone will fight to schedule Wake Forest, Duke, and the BIG10. How about the team who has beaten the highest ranked non-conference opponent as the tie breaker?

      • Dawgaholic

        You are not subject to the tiebreaker if you play a non-BCS team and lose. The reality is that this tiebreaker would almost never come into play because everyone would schedule at least one BCS team. Head to head would still be first unless a team decided to play 4 OOC non- BCS teams.

    • PTC DAWG

      Head to head is the best tie-breaker

  2. wnc dawg

    I think they are so resistant to the 9 game schedule because it is the final arrow in the quiver. What else can you use to get out of an undervalued contract in 5 years? ;)

  3. Sanford222view

    The SEC emailed out a survey to season ticket holders today about attending home football games. You had to indicate what school you were a season ticket holder of and besides the obvious questions about concessions, parking, etc. they asked what the 5 biggest reasons I didn’t attend more games were. I only checked one, “Other” and preceded to explain that it was the quality of the opponent.

    I went on to elaborate in the comments section at the end that either the SEC needed to move to 9 conference games and/or UGA needed to reduce the number of cupcake games down to one per season for me to make the effort to drive from Middle Georgia to attend a game. While I would love to play a Michigan, Texas, or Miami in Athens I would be happy with a UNC or Arizona caliber opponent for a home and home series.

  4. Sanford222view

    Here is what they sent…

    Dear Georgia Football Season Ticket Holder,

    We understand that your football team’s performance is a significant part of the overall gameday experience. However, we also know how important it is to continue improving other areas of the stadium experience in order to make it more enjoyable for you. We look forward to using data from this survey to build on the SEC’s reputation of having the best stadium experiences in the country.

    The survey can take up to 10 minutes to complete and is organized in sections.

    We would like your feedback on all of the major aspects of the stadium experience:
    – Introduction
    – First Impressions
    – Concessions
    – Restrooms
    – Band and Cheers
    – Video Board, Ribbon Boards and Sound
    – Connectivity and Conclusion

    PLEASE NOTE: The below link is uniquely tied to this survey and your email address. PLEASE DO NOT FORWARD THIS MESSAGE.

    Here is a link to the survey:
    (redacted)

    Thank you for your participation and feedback!

    Herb Vincent
    Associate Commissioner
    Southeastern Conference

    • Sanford222view

      I should mention they did list quality if opponent as an answer in one of the questions. It referenced something along the lines of “big game or rivalry game.”

      • Bob

        Sanford, I got the survey and responded like you did. I was pretty much satisfied with almost everything (less loud volume of PA pumped in music), but told them in no uncertain terms that I was sick of crappy FCS and lower tier FBS games. We didn’t play those when I went to school and we don’t need to play them now either.

        I am only 45 minutes from Sanford so I don’t have the long drive you have, but I could not agree more. I doubt if they pay much attention to the survey though.

        • Sanford222view

          Guess we are getting old! I mentioned the volume issue as well.

          I also took the opportunity to voice my opinion that tailgating needed to be facilitated not hindered. I requested more trash cans and dumpsters as well as allocating funds for clean up crews. I even went as far as to suggest they sell tailgating spots on North Campus and revoke those rights for those who can’t clean up after themselves properly with adequate trash receptacles provided.

    • DawgPhan

      Happy to take the survey. Wanted better wifi in the stadium and more loud piped in music. I attend every game regardless of opponent. The sorry wifi/cell service was my main gripe last season.

  5. Normaltown Mike

    Rather than a set cross conference schedule, I’d like the ACC to ask if they can become “SEC 2″ and create a promotion/relegation model like Premier League football does in England.

  6. Macallanlover

    Sad to see these men reduced to little boys. Man up “leaders”, give us big boy football every week and let’s see where the chips fall. TV viewership numbers will increase, bringing in with it higher ad dollars, stadiums will be full, and the chances of identifying the most worthy teams at the end will be much better.

  7. The 9-game schedule is the best we can hope for until the top 60 programs break away from the NCAA and form their own governing body where they won’t play anyone that’s not in the new organization. The 9-game schedule likely means either the end of the Tech game as an annual occurrence or the end at Jacksonville because the money side of the equation needs 7 home games per year and, therefore, a minimum of three home OOC games without a return game. We’re already in a situation because of expansion where we’re playing Auburn and Tech on the road in the same season. Does anyone really think the suits in Birmingham will do anything advantageous for us re: scheduling when they go to the 9-game schedule?

    • Gaskilldawg

      eethomaswfnc, you may not give a whit about basketball or the colleges ‘ Olympic sports but the “top 60″ football schools find value in them. Did you know the biggest check each “top 60″ gets from the NCAA each year is each school’s share of the NCAA men’s basketb tournament? Know why the television money from March Madness is so big? TV inventory. The networks have 65 games on which to sell advertising. If the “top 60″ break away their basketball tournament will be far less valuable.

      Plus, the “top 60’s ” basketball, baseball and other teams need home games in order to sell tickets. Those programs have to have Elons and Delaware States to fill out schedules. Really hard to make a 16 home game basketball schedule when there are only 59 teams available to play.

      Instead, you are more likely to see the football power conferences stay in the NCAA and get more autonomy regarding football issues. The power conferences and the NCAA need each other when it comes to all other sports.

      • Macallanlover

        When the “CFA” threat reared it’s head decades ago, didn’t it just apply to football? I don’t recall but I thought the other NCAA sports were to be left alone. The football portion already has pulled away from the NCAA with the BCS and bowl revenues beyond the reach of the NCAA, taking the regular season to that level for a few dozen schools isn’t that great a leap, imo.

        • Gaskilldawg

          In the 1970s the NCAA was not divided into divisions. The big schools chafed at having the Colagates and the Emory and Henrys having the same clout on issues as did Texas and Alabama. The big schools talked about splitting off but instead the NCAA divided schools into divisions so that the schools could set competition rules more suitable to their circumstances. The conditions were more favorable for a split. The number of schools that would have split would have been about 100, which would have been what we know now as division one. The NCAA men’s basketball tournament was not the cash cow it is now and had just recently expanded to allow more than one tconditions are eam per conference to participate. The NCAA had only sponsered women’s sports for a couple of years so setting up that model would be easier.

          30 years later conditions are different. The power conference football schools probably will get a unique subdivision for football and remain in division 1 for the remaining sports. Why reinvent the nonfootball wheel when the NCAA D one meets those needs?

      • I like college basketball, but I also think the top 60 may have a better product with something similar to the NBA playoffs where the teams play best 2 out of 3 series instead of the 1 and done of March Madness. The tournament has absolutely killed the meaning of the basketball regular season. You talk about more inventory, but would you rather watch a #1 baby-seal-club a #16 in a half-filled arena on a Thursday afternoon or get directly to the “Sweet 16″ and play a series over a weekend and the winners do that over the next four weeks?

        The only thing the NCAA cares about is protecting March Madness, not for the benefit of its members but for its own relevance.

        • Gaskilldawg

          eethomaswfnc, you poo-poo the “inventory ” issue as to television contracts for the tournament. TBS and TNT pay to televise first weekend games. They pay because they get greater ad rates per minute for ads showing at noon on the first Thursday than for ads showing during refund of Saved By The Bell. The viewing choice on that first Thursday is not between a 1 seed baby seal clubbing a 16 seed versus a 1seed versus a 4seed. The viewing choices for you and me on that day are the 1seed against a 16 seed versus reruns of Saved by the Bell. I will choose basketball. I tell you what, if you can convince TBS and TNT to give the NCAA the same money without having games to televised then you are the world’s best salesman. The rest of the world cannot sellbroadcasting rights to games that donor exist.

          As far as your solution to scheduling problems with a 60 school organization being, “make playoffs best 2 of 3,” that does nothing to create enough regular seaspn home games for all 60 schools. The 16 teams in the playoffs could have at least one home playoff game but the 44 teams not in the playoffs would be out of luck on more ways than one.

          College football cannot be NFL Lite if colleges wish to have other sports. The NFL does not have to sorry about servicing the Seahawk’s baseball and track teams. Colleges do.

          • Very good points all in particular about the cable networks and the first weekend of the tournament – I’ll admit at the root of this is my disdain for the hypocrites at the NCAA. They turn a blind eye and act like the Keystone Kops when confronted with the Cam Newton situation and then take a holy-than-thou position based on a TMZ report on A.J. Green who sells a jersey to someone he was supposed to know was a runner for an agent and is honest about the whole affair.

            • Gaskilldawg

              Agree wholeheartedly about the enforcement issues. Scam Newton made us all more cynical.

              The NCAA is not sn independent entity imposing ruled on resentful members. The schools vote into effect the rules they are to live by. If the top 60 secedes their new organization will have rules those members vote on, just as now. The problem, sd I see it, is s hiring problem. The members need to hire s better director. If yhr top 60 hires Mark Emert Ii the top 60 organization will have the dams problems.

              Another thing I would fear is that an Auburn attitude will have more significance in a smaller organization. Now Auburn is one of 125 votes in the FBS division. It would be one of 60 votes in the top 60 league, meaning Auburn ‘s vote would be twice as much weight. I also fear that when a larger percentage of our peers have Auburn ethics the greater pressure on us to be as Auburn.

              I think the NCAA members need to improve that otganization.

              • Good points – Mark Emmert is the problem at the NCAA. The byzantine rulebook and the arbitrary method the NCAA uses to enforce the rules when it wants to generate a lot of resentment in the college fan base and have made us cynical. No matter what the governing body looks like, we will always have programs that look to stretch every rule to the breaking point and those that go all in.

  8. Gaskilldawg

    The reasons the SEC resists going to s nine game schedule are:
    1. Every other year each team loses a home game. It replaces a Buffalo with an away conference game. That could mean the loss of seven home game revenues a year to the conference

    The MSUs and the Vandys and the Kentucky s and buy win against UMass or Ga State. Those wins often make the difference between bowl eligibility and home for the holidays. Adding another conference game adds seven more losses to the league and can effect those, what, 10 bowl contracts the SEC has.

    The delta contract money from televisionwhen addition a conference game had to clearly exceed the lost home game revenues and bowl money in order for the mcgaritys of the league to agree to it.

    Love to see a 9 game schedule, though.

    • Dawgaholic

      The last bowl game is probably a money loser considering travel costs and a low payout at that level. At UGA we alternate 6 home and 7 home anyway. A 9th conference game would cost us games like Clemson and the kickoff classics. I’d prefer keeping the Clemson type games over adding a 9th conference game personally.