The one good lesson the SEC should take from the 2020 season.

The SEC played (okay, tried to play) a ten-game conference schedule this year and heads didn’t explode.  There will be a conference team in the CFP.  Basically, business as usual.

No, I don’t expect a 10-game conference schedule going forward, for the reason Smart states, but there’s no reason that a nine-game conference schedule isn’t doable.  There isn’t the downside coaches fear.  Assuming that a cupcake game is ditched for another SEC game, it’s a better deal for fans attending and TV networks broadcasting.  Most importantly, such a move undoes a lot of the scheduling stupidity Mike Slive inflicted upon us when he expanded the conference to fourteen schools.

Ideally, this ought to be mated with the NCAA’s move to do away with a win requirement for bowl games, so that coaches don’t have a reason to object, but that’s not mandatory as far as I’m concerned.  Just do it, Sankey.

A nine-game conference schedule just means more.

26 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

26 responses to “The one good lesson the SEC should take from the 2020 season.

  1. 79dawg

    One other thing you didn’t mention, that I saw some coaches/admins/MSM mention the past week or two is, why do we have to schedule non-conference games 8-15 years out? College basketball doesn’t do it that way, the logistics aren’t that big a difference from “normal” travel and – like a 9 or 10 game conference schedule – its actually cheaper since you’re not having to pay a cupcake $1MM+ to show up for the scrimmage.
    As a paying fan, I am all in favor of 9 conference games, Tech, and another big OOC game (particularly in years when we are the home team in Jax).

    Liked by 6 people

    • amurraycuh

      The bottom line is that it is cheaper to schedule these games months ahead of time. The logistics of moving 20 personnel in basketball is much easier than the 100+ need for football. 99% of the issue is financial.

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      • 79dawg

        Logistically, how is travelling to Columbia, Missouri every other year any different than traveling to Norman, Oklahoma with 2-years notice? Are hotel rooms and tour buses so “hot” in Norman that they are booked out 2 years in advance???

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    • I think it’s because there are fewer slots and you have to work your schedule to maximum effect. UGA has 3 slots per year with 8 conference games and Fech. With the need for home and home for larger OOC games, you have to sign the deal fairly far in advance.

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  2. Ran A

    And while your at it – switch Auburn and Mizzou. Auburn would now be part of the East, so that would mean that Georgia would play 3 teams from the West every year with a 9 game slate, while keeping Auburn on the schedule every year.

    Liked by 2 people

    • That doesn’t work bc of UT-Alabama and Auburn-Alabama. Auburn and Tennessee both in the East means Alabama loses one of those. Tennessee wouldn’t complain at this point, but no way Birmingham sacrifices any Alabama rivalry to have the conference actually make geographic sense.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Ran A

        You make a great point. None of us should be naive when it comes to Bama’s influence on football conference decisions.

        My guess is that if Auburn, Georgia and UT all pushed for this, then it gets tougher for Alabama to make the argument. The rest of the West would, in theory, be happy with the trade.

        Maybe, just maybe Georgia’s next AD can work to build a consensus with Auburn and UT and others and push this point. You would think Auburn would be all about it.

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      • Wolfman

        Then the accommodating – and geographical way to do it – would be to move Bama and Auburn to the East, and Missouri and Vandy to the West. Hey, at least important rivalries would be saved?

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        • tiredofidsearch

          Talk about an unbalanced conference. The east would be a murderers row…. bama, auburn, georgia, florida. Not to mention if the orange boys ever get back to some semblance of their former self.

          Liked by 1 person

      • Tony BarnFart

        Who becomes Georgia’s permanent West rival in that scenario ? Moving as few deck chairs, that leaves us with Arkansas or Mizzou (mehh). Shuffle for power balance by giving USCjr and Arkansas back to each other, Mizzou to UT (hey they border each other), leaving us with… A&M (more interesting but still sorta backasswards to be permanently paired with no history)

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  3. rigger92

    Back when this season was announced as being conference only, the first thought I had was “uh oh, the fans are about to get what we have always wanted. A season where every game matters.”

    I sure do hope that someone notices and keeps some of the good things that this season brought us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • signaldawg

      I had the same thought, except season ticket holders got screwed. We finally get a decent home schedule and most season ticket holders can’t take advantage. Next year’s home slate is not looking good.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Reading between the lines of Kirby’s statement, he seems to want a 10-game SEC schedule plus Tech. Which would make me happy, too. Although–as much as I like going to Jax–I think this scenario would mean the Fla game goes home and home. Because the bad thing about 2020 is only 4 games in Athens.

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    • David Basham

      … And that’s if we get that fourth home game. I could envision the SEC juggling the home schedules next year for those teams that didn’t get a full slate this season.

      Like

  5. otto1980

    I had rather have the originally scheduled season than this year. I very much look forward to the various out of conference games. Playing Arkansas or Miss St. isn’t any more exciting than Virginia but Virginia is a much less played opponent who I dislike more than the 2 west teams mentioned. Keep the schedule as it was prior to COVID. I have watched less football than prior years.

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  6. stoopnagle

    Here’s a crazy idea: take scheduling OOC games out of the school’s hands and centralize it. P5 schools know they’re going to travel. Where and when is important, but they have a budget. Standardize that shit, then have a yearly conference where OOC games are brokered for the coming year. Have a process where those games are approved for competitive interest and equity across leagues. There will be controversy, but we get that just trying to do conference games. I mean, how’d that schedule work out for UF this year?

    Hope those fuckers enjoy the back-to-back games vs Bama. That shit is not fun at all.

    Like

    • stoopnagle

      Or, set all of FBS up like the FA Cup. Rank all the teams, then have a lottery each week to see who plays who. Make the whole season a tournament with some permanent games built in. There are ways to make it interesting every year.

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      • mp

        Should do a Bracket Buster weekend. Rank 1-20; 1 plays 11; 2 vs 12 on down. Then do same thing 21-40. Something that does not make the top teams destroy each other but makes for interesting matchups across conferences

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  7. 69Dawg

    Screw it just drop the Divisions and go from there. We played Ole Miss almost every year before the Playoff caused the Divisional splits. Rotate all but the teams that are your natural rivals. If you got no natural rivals (see ARK, MO, A&M,SC) you become the wildcards. Best team plays the second best team ala the Big12 for the Championship. Here’s a thought do the basketball thing have a season Champ and a Tournament Champ, that way we can get two teams into the 16 team playoff that is coming. Just spitballing here.

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  8. coastaldawg

    I would love the 10 game schedule but for the reasons above I don’t see it happening. If we do get 9 conference games, they should be mandated to 4 home, 4 away and one neutral site for everyone. The league and schools would get big bucks form cities like Charlotte, Little Rock, Memphis, Dallas, Atlanta and Jax.

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  9. uga97

    how about dropping & replacing vandy completely. Then tell Florida they must replace them with a ranked P5 program played outside of the state of Florida.

    Like