Daily Archives: July 30, 2021

Herbstreit haz a sad.

Shot.

Chaser.

Does somebody want to remind Herbie of the outfit he works for?

68 Comments

Filed under Big 12 Football, ESPN Is The Devil, It's Just Bidness

Texas is in.

That was fast.

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UPDATE:  The Sooners are on board as well.

The die is cast.

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UPDATE #2:  And it’s Jere Morehead who officially welcomes them to the party.

42 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, Texas Is Just Better Than You Are.

Whither SEC scheduling?

More money is in sight, so the suits are happy.  For the fans, what’s left is what to do about cleaning up the mess Mike Slive created.

… In the conference’s current format, teams play eight games: six each year from within their own division and two opponents from the opposite division, one on a permanent basis and one rotating—a 6-1-1 model that has long been the target of criticism both in and outside the league.

For many, the permanent, cross-divisional matchup is the real problem. While it preserves long-standing rivalries, it creates imbalance in scheduling and prevents teams from regularly playing their SEC brethren, with as many as seven years between matchups of some teams.

Yeah, that’s been less than optimal.  So, what’s on the table starts with three basic considerations, according to Dellenger.

Pods or divisions?

Two permanent opponents or three?

Eight games or nine?

Of those three, the last is by far the most important.  If the conference elects to stay with an eight-game schedule, it almost has no choice but to change the format for its schools to play.  Maintaining the status quo would mean an even longer period for some schools to go before facing certain teams in the other division.

If that’s the case, his first question is no longer pods or divisions.  It’s pods or nothing.

“Each team has three permanent opponents and six rotational,” suggests one league source.

This division-less 3–6 format would preserve long-standing rivalry games—though not all of them—and would guarantee that every team in the conference would meet one another every other year. While the model is gaining steam within the league, it has its own issues.

The two teams with the best records play in the SEC championship game, but that may lead to messy tie-breakers and too many rematches.

True to both, and besides that, you’re probably looking at a bloody fight as to which teams are assigned as a school’s three permanent opponents.  (One can only imagine what Greg McGarity’s approach would be like.  Shudder.)  It wouldn’t be any easier with an eight-game, 3-5 format.

To me, pods are a little less free flowing than that, but still create similar problems.

Going to a nine-game schedule gives the conference more options in how that’s structured, including maintaining the current divisional arrangement in place.  It also gives ESPN more product, which, given the times, is probably a bigger factor than what the fans want.

I have no idea how this is about to play out, but whatever the conference chooses, it’ll probably be less than optimal.  Some traditions really don’t change.

77 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

A quiet despair

In the wake of being trolled in the comments yesterday (given that said commenter had the word “troll” in his handle, yes, I probably should have known better), maybe I need to make something clear.  Or clearer, anyway.

I don’t take any pleasure out of the newest round of SEC realignment/expansion.  Nor am I slitting my wrists over it.  For me, it just is.

What it represents to me is a culmination of events that have taken their steady course over more than a decade now:  conference realignment, broadcast “partnerships” (now, there’s a word) and playoff expansion.  The less than holy trinity that has slowly sucked the life out of my favorite sport.

Am I sad about that?  Of course.  But that’s nothing new.  I was sad when Mike Slive embarked on the conference’s last round of expansion, which was driven by greed and jealousy over what the Big Ten was raking in with their broadcast deal.  I’ve been even sadder watching ESPN pervert regionalism for a broader, but less passionate, national interest in the postseason, because it’s a more efficient way of monetizing the sport.  On a local level, I was sad watching Butts-Mehre use the Magill Society platform to screw with a loyal fan base that had put its money where its collective mouth was for decades, only to be pushed aside for nouveau contributors who have been allowed to jump to the front of the line.  Those are all part of the same story.

The horse, in other words, has already left the proverbial barn and is roaming freely somewhere in the next county.

So when I see sentiment expressed by Seth Emerson ($$) and others like this…

What makes college football great is the regionalism, the intimacy and differences of conferences, the arguments we have over which conference is better, people screaming “S-E-C”.

… all I can do is shrug.  Because the money trumps everything, and by the time the idiots who run the sport realize how they’ve managed to screw up an incredibly good thing, it’ll be way too late to do anything about it.

My mantra for the past few years has been “if only I can get another five good years out of college football, it’ll be alright”.  I think I’m running on borrowed time now.

70 Comments

Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

“There’s a level of respect that’s present and will remain going forward.”

Hey, remember my simple question?

Well, Greg Sankey’s having none of that.

SEC commissioner Greg Sankey told ESPN on Thursday that the expected move of Big 12 co-founders Oklahoma and Texas to his league shouldn’t impact the consideration of a 12-team College Football Playoff. Sankey also expects to continue working with Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby on the CFP’s management committee in spite of what has become an obviously fractured relationship.

Bowlsby and Sankey were two of the four members of the CFP subcommittee who spent the past two years working closely together on developing the proposal for a 12-team format, along with Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick.

“Let’s look back at history at the ability of people to work together through challenging circumstances,” Sankey said. “In 2010 there was movement, 2011 dating back to movement around the Big East and the ACC. There were moments, but we all have a responsibility. I do think there’s a level of respect that’s present and will remain going forward. There are tough times, but those who have been in leadership positions have always been able to work through those elements of our relationships and our work.”

The rest of the college football world can be summarized for now as “fuck your no hard feelings, Greg.”

One high-ranking official involved in the process told ESPN he expects a “serious mixed range of views” when the 22 commissioners and presidents convene in September.

“It’s probably going to be a slightly tense meeting because of a little bit of a lack of trust,” the source said. “It’s an environment right now where I think it’s fair to say not everybody trusts everybody else because there are a lot of moving parts.”

The problem for them, of course, as Sankey knows damned well, is that there’s so much money with a 12-team playoff.

Sankey continued to reiterate that the SEC wasn’t leading the charge on playoff expansion, and he has said repeatedly he is happy with a four-team field.

“That decision hasn’t changed,” he said. “Twelve was built around a set of principles and realities that I think have been present and will remain present in college football. Others may feel differently, so they have a format in which they can react. That was the charge of the working group. I’ll be curious to hear their feedback.”

Feedback:

“It just feels uneasy relative to the 12 [teams],” Kliavkoff told CBS Sports. “I’m assuming my colleagues, nationally, this is a reason to pause on the 12. We need to pause.”

Yeah.  The question for George is how long.  The Pac-12 may tut tut for a little while, but it needs a 12-team format with a guaranteed slot for a conference champ badly.  And, again, Sankey knows that.

“The Pac-12 doesn’t get in the playoff very often in the current format,” Sankey told CBS Spots. “I think we all felt a responsibility to look at different models to provide access.

“If somebody wants to suggest this was motivated by some self interest, they’re missing a big picture. Why would I support any automatic conference access? Why would I have said pretty openly we shouldn’t leave the West Coast part of the country out of the playoff?”

There will be a playoff fight between the conferences about the CFP.  But it won’t be about the format.  It’s going to be about — what else? — distribution of revenue.

In devastating the Big 12 to the point it has lost 50% to 75% of its value, the SEC enhanced its power, leverage and earning potential to the point some college leaders fear the conference could earn six of the 12 available playoff spots in the proposed expansion.

“With 12 teams, we could just be watching a lot of SEC teams in the 12-team playoff,” a highly-placed Power Five source told CBS Sports.

One Power Five AD added: “Why on God’s green Earth would the Pac-12 and Big Ten hand over these [playoff] rights, which only strengthens the SEC?”

A second Power Five AD agreed: “I don’t care if there are 10 SEC teams in; we just can’t make that a bonanza [every] year for them. You can’t strangle everybody else financially.”

Easier said than done, Bubba.

An easy fix for the CFP would be limiting the number teams from one conference that could enter a 12-team field. The problem? None of the stakeholders want that. As dominant as the SEC could become, other power conferences do not want to give up the possibility of unlimited berths for their leagues.

Sankey’s already showing one of his hole cards.

As proposed, an expanded playoff would include the top six ranked conference champions with no automatic bids. The top four ranked teams would receive first-round byes.

However, Sankey has raised the idea of accepting the 12 best teams, regardless of conference titles.

“Should we just say the 12 best teams?” Sankey proposed. “I’ve been asked that by our own membership.”

They’re just asking, y’all.

15 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, SEC Football

“I think JT’s fantastic.”

I hope somebody loves you the way Jordan Rodgers is enamored of JT Daniels.

11 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

14-zip

It’s all over but the shouting.

But there will be plenty of shouting.

At least Bob managed to toss another gratuitous “doin’ it for the kids” nod.

What’s your over/under on when the two schools actually play SEC ball?

20 Comments

Filed under Big 12 Football, SEC Football