One Year Later: A Look at UNC Conference Realignment Emails

Posted: October 11, 2013 in Big Ten, College Basketball, College Football, Sports
Tags: , , , ,

For the past year, I’ve been pointing out that conference realignment really hinges on three primary schools: Texas, Notre Dame and North Carolina. The first two are fairly obvious to football-focused fans, but UNC is really the true lynchpin to the ACC. So, it was interesting to see the emails that were circulated within the UNC leadership ranks in the wake of Maryland’s defection to the Big Ten last year that The News & Observer procured. Here are some key excerpts and my thoughts:

Emails to and from Cunningham, the UNC athletic director, reflect the uncertainty that fans, boosters, administrators and Cunningham himself shared in the days after Maryland announced its decision to leave the ACC. Financial concerns drove the speculation surrounding conference realignment. According to Maryland, those concerns also drove it out of the ACC.

Hours after Maryland announced its move, Sports Illustrated posted a story on its website that detailed how much more money Maryland would make in the Big Ten. The first paragraph read: “The University of Maryland stands to make nearly $100 million more in conference revenue by 2020 with its switch from the ACC to the Big Ten. …”

Martina Ballen, the Chief Financial Officer of the UNC athletic department, emailed the link to Cunningham and UNC’s associate athletic directors. She included a short note: “Wow! Big $$$ if this is accurate.”

***

Other emails Cunningham received expressed shock that Maryland would leave, and they questioned whether the money in the Big Ten was that much greater than in the ACC. One came from Cappy Gagnon, a longtime Notre Dame athletic department employee who retired in 2011.

“I don’t get this one,” Gagnon wrote to Cunningham, who started his college athletic administration career at Notre Dame. “Maryland is going to be nobody in the Big Ten, with zero natural rivals and long travel. Is the money from the Big Ten Network that much greater than the ACC TV money?”

Cunningham’s response: “Yes. Likely $20 (million)/yr by 2017.”

This was one of the more surprising points in the sense that there seemed to be a genuine lack of knowledge among top level people of how much more of an advantage in TV money that the Big Ten had (and continues to have) over the ACC. That wasn’t something isolated to UNC – recall that University of Maryland President Wallace D. Loh stated that he was “stunned” at the Big Ten’s financial projections and didn’t realize the extent of the financial disparities between conferences until going through realignment discussions. It would have been one thing if these were average sports fans just focused on on-the-field results, but it’s quite amazing that university leaders and athletic department officials didn’t seem to be as informed on college sports financial matters as, say, most of the people reading this blog or those that followed the reporting of mainstream media members like Brett McMurphy of ESPN.com, Andy Staples of SI.com and Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com. It’s an indication of the insularity of many universities and athletic departments and partially explains why the inertia in favor of the status quo is often stronger than many conference expansionistas would like to believe. What we’re seeing is that it takes a real external crisis for the vast majority of power conference schools to take notice of the information that’s out there and consider switching leagues. (Note that this thinking doesn’t apply to the “Group of Five” non-power conference schools, who are going to be continuously and unabashedly actively looking for greener pastures.)

Cunningham had no shortage of input. A steady stream of emails from alumni, fans and boosters began on Nov. 20.

The notes came from everywhere: from people who graduated from UNC in the 1960s, and those who graduated in the past few years. Former athletes wrote in. There were Rams Club members. And emails from fans who had no tie to the school other than their allegiance.

One came from an Army major who wrote of how he’d followed UNC athletics throughout deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq. He expressed concern about a conference move and wrote, “I will always love Carolina, but my fervor towards our athletic programs would die a rapid death should we choose to enter the BIG TEN.”

The emails – many coming after UNC fans on the message boards at InsideCarolina.com organized a push to fill Cunningham’s inbox – shared roughly the same sentiment: Lead the Tar Heels out of the crumbling ACC, to a better place. The overwhelming majority of fans preferred moving to the SEC. Among the more than 150 pages of emails that Cunningham received in the 10 days after Maryland’s announcement, only one email favored joining the Big Ten.

This isn’t a shock that UNC fans preferred a move to the SEC over the Big Ten, as many purely sports-focused fans are generally ignorant or dismissive of the desire of university presidents to tie academic prestige to athletic conferences along with the TV dollars involved. As I’ve stated in previous posts, this plays to the ACC’s advantage in terms of retaining UNC: Tar Heel fans want a Southern-based athletic league, but university leaders care much more about being with their academic peers and maximizing revenue. So, the ACC provides the right balance of being Southern-focused (unlike the Big Ten) and having academic prestige (more so than the SEC).

And so it went, day after day. The most dire speculation was that Florida State and Clemson might also leave for the Big 12. The possibility came up in communication between Cunningham and Dean Jordan, an ACC consultant who specializes in TV rights contracts.

Jordan, who works for the Wasserman Media Group, worked closely with Swofford and helped convince Florida State and Virginia, among others, that the grant of rights agreement would help secure the ACC’s future. Jordan also discussed with ACC schools the possible benefits of developing a TV network devoted to ACC coverage.

Back then, in the days after Maryland’s announcement, Jordan was like everyone else, trying to figure out whether Florida State might actually leave. In an email to Cunningham on Nov. 21, Jordan wrote:

“FSU’s life won’t greatly change in the Big 12. The Big 12 TV deal is pro-rata for any new member and their TV distribution is only about $1 (million) more than the ACC. The Big 12 is going to take in $13 (million) more in BCS money – around $1 (million) per school.

“So for $2 to $3 (million) bucks, FSU is going to go through the trauma of switching leagues?”

The Wasserman consultant crystallized what I had always thought about the prospect of Florida State and Clemson going to the Big 12: it just didn’t make sense when you just took a step back and saw what was involved. The Big 12 might have had the advantage in pure on-the-field football performance over the past several years, but that league is a paper tiger in off-the-field conference realignment discussions compared to the ACC and other power conferences. Florida State might have used discussions (or the rumors of discussions) with the Big 12 as leverage to get an audience with the SEC and Big Ten, but the Seminoles were never seriously considering actually joining the Big 12.

Cunningham didn’t just receive emails from interested colleagues and panicking fans. On Nov. 25 – six days after Maryland announced its move – former University of Cincinnati NCAA faculty athletics representative Frederick Russ wrote Cunningham in hopes of bolstering support for Cincinnati.

Russ and Cunningham spent time together days before at the Maui Invitational in Hawaii.

“As I mentioned in Maui, I’ve been hearing all kinds of rumors about which schools the ACC might seek to add, and I wanted to let you know why I think adding the University of Cincinnati to the ACC would benefit the conference and both UNC and UC,” Russ wrote, before listing his reasons.

The ACC, though, already was finalizing its plan. Less than two weeks after Maryland announced that it would be leaving for the Big Ten, the ACC on Nov. 29, 2012 announced that it was replacing Maryland with Louisville. About five months after that, the conference had secured a grant of rights agreement, which effectively put an end – at least for the foreseeable future – to speculation and rumors that were never more prevalent than in the days that followed news of Maryland’s impending departure for the Big Ten.

Give Cincinnati credit for this: that school has been tireless in getting its message out for conference realignment purposes and taking nothing for granted. To be honest, I didn’t even really consider Cincinnati to be a viable ACC candidate in the immediate aftermath of the Maryland defection, but they managed to at least shoehorn themselves into the conversation when all was said and done (despite the fact that Louisville was ultimately chosen). Being aggressive in and of itself isn’t going to change a school’s position in conference realignment, but with the insularity among university and athletic department officials that I described above, taking every opportunity to highlight successes and future facilities plans (particularly in football) to the right people is critical. Louisville (Cincinnati’s competition) did just that over the past couple of years and went from being a marginal ACC candidate and possibly being left out of the power conference picture completely to grabbing the last spot in the ACC against formidable athletic (at least in basketball) and academic competition (UConn). Keep an eye out on Cincinnati when (not if) the Big 12 inevitably comes to the conclusion that it needs to expand.

All-in-all, the UNC emails highlighted the consternation that school officials and fans feel in times of conference realignment instability. As much as people like me are interested in the topic, I can certainly understand that no one in a leadership position likes dealing with periods of high stakes uncertainty. That being said, UNC is one of the few schools that is legitimately in control of its own destiny – both the Big Ten and SEC would take them in a heartbeat. The worst case scenario for the Tar Heels is that they are forced to join a league against their will that is wealthier and more powerful than the ACC itself. A fellow ACC school like Wake Forest, on the other hand, would feel quite a bit differently in the face of a conference collapse (just as Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas and Kansas State feared back in 2010 and 2011 with the Big 12 defections and UConn, Cincinnati and USF feel today in not being able to escape the then-Big East (now AAC). Schools will continue to place quite a bit of value on stability even if there is the possibility of larger dollars elsewhere.

(Image from Now I Know – It’s Gotta Be the Shorts)

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Comments
  1. greg says:

    I guess I’ll renew my subscription.

  2. tomdauwwg says:

    Spartans > Hoosiers

  3. ccrider55 says:

    “He said the SEC pays out around $20 (million per) team right now,” Frierson wrote. “Thinks it will approach $35 (million per team) when TV contract is renegotiated in a couple of years.”

    When does the SEC renegotiate?

    • Andy says:

      It’s in progress. SEC Network starts next year. The SEC should make anywhere from $30-40M per school starting out.

      • Chas. says:

        I’m not so sure that a potential SEC network would have anywhere near the financial strength of the Big Ten Network. The B1G has two things working for it that can’t be matched by the SEC; highly populous states with higher subscriber fees and huge nationwide alumni bases that tune in for third tier games.

        • zeek says:

          The X-factor though is Texas. No one really knows what the SEC will get in Texas.

        • Andy says:

          SEC states as a whole have a higher population than B1G states, but it splits 14 ways instead of 12. Florida and Texas have huge populations. Georgia, Missouri, and Tennessee have B1G-level populations. Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and South Carolina are a bit smaller but they add up.

          • duffman says:

            Andy,

            Quit making stuff up. B1G has exclusive control of the biggest states in the country. SEC has to split their only big states of TX and FL.

          • ccrider55 says:

            CA is in the B1G? ;)

          • AllTideUp says:

            Actually, even when you add the states of Maryland and New Jersey, the SEC’s 14 still has a larger footprint than the B1G’s 14. The B1G does have generally larger alumni bases, but the SEC has more national appeal as far as the quality of the football. Subscription rates outside of your footprint go for pennies on the dollar so there’s no huge advantage there either way. The B1G has better basketball so that leads to more viewers for longer periods out the year. The SEC has a good baseball and softball culture so it remains to be seen how that might play on a regional network. I don’t think the final numbers for either network will be too different.

          • Brian says:

            AllTideUp,

            “Actually, even when you add the states of Maryland and New Jersey, the SEC’s 14 still has a larger footprint than the B1G’s 14.”

            If you give them all of the population in each state, sure, but not by much and the B10 doesn’t split as many states.

            B10 – 85.0M
            SEC – 92.2M (but split TX, FL, GA, SC and KY)

            In addition, NE adds the people in several small surrounding states (ND, SD, etc) and PSU+UMD+RU adds a bunch in the north east (DE, parts of NY state, etc).

          • AllTideUp says:

            Brian,

            It’s granted that the SEC “splits” states, but that’s a hairy concept. If you are referring to market penetration then I guarantee you the SEC Network will be in every market in FL, GA, SC, and KY. There may be other major programs in those states, but the SEC owns the flagship and most popular in each instance. In fact, I dare say the SEC doesn’t even split GA. GT has a miniscule fan base. It’s kind of like saying PSU splits PA with Pitt. There are more non-UGA SEC fans in GA than GT fans. Speaking of SEC fans in general, you have to account for all the alumni that leave their home state for jobs elsewhere. it’s not just people from up North that have ballooned FL’s population in the last generation.

            The only question mark here is Texas. How far is A&M’s reach? There aren’t tons of SEC alumni stretching into Texas like there are in the traditional footprint. I would be surprised if the SECN isn’t on in the biggest markets, but full penetration is a question.

            Also, you have to consider that even though there aren’t as many major college programs in the B1G footprint, there does exist a much more significant pro-sports culture. Not only are there a large number of passionate pro-sports fans, there are many more pro-sports teams across the board. That divides loyalties…viewership…and dollars.

          • Brian says:

            Considering TX has 26M people and UT has slightly more fans than TAMU, I think mentioning that the SEC splits the state is relevant. If you only give the SEC 50% of TX, that’s a drop of 13M people and puts them behind the B10. You can also legitimately argue that FL is split, and I’m not sure Miami would pay the full rate for SECN (big cities are tough to crack anyway, plus lots of northerners and Miami fans).

          • duffman says:

            GT has a miniscule fan base. It’s kind of like saying PSU splits PA with Pitt. There are more non-UGA SEC fans in GA than GT fans.

            The issue of split states is hairy indeed. Nobody would argue Georgia has a decided edge over Georgia Tech at this point in time. When Georgia Tech was in the SEC they were the better team on the national level early on tho. The point being made is that unlike Michigan and Michigan State and the state of Michigan, Georgia – the state – is more fractured. If demographics are correct B1G alumni are moving south more than SEC alumni are moving north. In addition, Michigan – the state – is in the center of the B1G while Georgia is a border state to the ACC.

            My gut feeling is if you add up all the ACC alumni in Georgia – the state – they far exceed Georgia Tech alumni so math may look like this :

            GA = UGA + GT + non UGA SEC + non GT ACC + B1G/B12/PAC fans + non Big 5 fans

            My only question is where each of those parts rank in the equation?

            Now look at Michigan and Michigan State in the state of Michigan

            MI = UM + MSU + OTR B1G fans + non B1G fans + non Big 5 fans

            Even if you eliminate all the Michigan and Michigan State alumni I am willing to bet that the alumni from all the other 10 B1G (before adding Maryland and Rutgers) is the largest population (over ACC + B12 + PAC + SEC alumni) and still exceeds all the MAC fans in the state of Michigan combined into a single group.

          • AllTideUp says:

            Brian,

            I said Texas was split and I also questioned whether or not the SECN would gain full penetration there. The question is not how many UT alumni are in the state, however. The question is, is there a sufficient enough population of A&M fans in conjunction with other interested parties that would request the SECN. If you reach a critical mass in a given market then the network goes on. True, UT alums probably aren’t going to be watching the SECN so that affects viewership and ad sales, but it doesn’t necessarily discourage market penetration.

            I also know Florida is split, but again that doesn’t necessarily discourage market penetration. UF is a bigger force in their state than A&M is in theirs. Not to mention there are plenty of SEC alumni there outside of FSU or Miami fans(the Miami fan base is more like that of a mid-major anyway). My point is I would be shocked if the SECN is not on in every market there. Having a state split by multiple BCS programs is not as big an issue as people make it out to be. Iowa isn’t damaged by the presence of ISU…or PSU damaged by the presence of Pitt. Cable subscriptions are paid by everyone, not just the alumni in a state.

          • AllTideUp says:

            duffman,

            Yes, there are more B1G alumni moving South. Ultimately that means more B1G alumni paying SECN subscription fees because there aren’t nearly enough of them to represent of critical mass of uninterested customers. Also, if a compelling SEC game is on the SECN(as has been reported to be the plan) then you might even find B1G alumni switching over to watch a game provided their team isn’t playing. The SEC doesn’t have the highest rated football games in the nation by accident. It’s not a detriment to the SECN as long as the number of B1G alumni or ACC alumni don’t outnumber SEC fans(alumni or not). Possibly the more interesting dynamic of the demographic shifts is that more and more children of B1G alumni living in the South will end up going to a state school which will actually increase the SEC alumni base in the future(ACC as well, just depending on where the kid grows up).

            States like Georgia and Florida may be more fractured, but there are higher percentages of college football fans in the South as opposed to Northern and Midwestern states. That’s especially true when you look at states like MD and NJ.

            And my only point in all this is to say, in the end, the numbers being pulled in by either network won’t be that different one way or the other.

          • swesleyh says:

            No doubt that the SECN will be on every cable carrier in Texas. Already has a contract with AT&T Uverse, which serves most of Texas. If you look at the TV ratings of the Alabama-A&M game and the Old Miss – A&M game you will see in both games that the highest ratings were in the city of Austin. Yep, that is the UT home city. Pears’ that those old rivals who do not acknowledge each other any more still tune into the others games. UT-OU was on an over the air network but Old Miss – A&M was ESPN and both ratings were within a couple of points of each other and both were higher that PSU – Michigan.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Its Dallas / Ft. Worth that is the big enchilada ~ Texas A&M obviously gets in-conference carriage in East Texas, likely doesn’t in West Texas, but if they get in-conference carriage in East and Central Texas, that’s about 80% of the state, and if they get out of conference carriage in Central Texas, that’s more like getting 30%-40% of the state.

      • C.toda says:

        Should ,could would ,maybe.

  4. Definitely interesting to see some of the stuff that UNC people were saying. Thanks for the analysis!

  5. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX Tigers!

  6. vp19 says:

    UNC envisions itself as an alpha dog, but isn’t serious about playing alpha dog football (admittedly, it probably was burned by Butch Davis). Being in the ACC enables it to delude itself into staying in a basketball-oriented cocoon (unlike Kentucky, Indiana and Kansas, which at least know they are outliers in football-oriented conferences). But a decade from, if the revenue gap between the ACC and the Big Ten or SEC grows to the point where it can no longer be ignored, the likes of Virginia and Georgia Tech may contemplate bidding adieu to the ACC and seeking greener pastures in the Big Ten (particularly if Virginia gradually sheds its southern veneer). Take those two out of the ACC, and Chapel Hill will face a quandary — especially since it would be impossible to find replacements on a similar level, and the ACC’s closest link to the affluent D.C. market would be Virginia Tech, some miles southwest of Roanoke.

    • Brian says:

      vp19,

      “But a decade from, if the revenue gap between the ACC and the Big Ten or SEC grows to the point where it can no longer be ignored, the likes of Virginia and Georgia Tech may contemplate bidding adieu to the ACC and seeking greener pastures in the Big Ten (particularly if Virginia gradually sheds its southern veneer).”

      The quote below lends some credence to the idea that UVA was giving the B10 consideration.

      Jordan, who works for the Wasserman Media Group, worked closely with Swofford and helped convince Florida State and Virginia, among others, that the grant of rights agreement would help secure the ACC’s future.

      I find it hard to believe they would’ve left without UNC, but maybe they were more serious about it than I thought.

  7. vp19 says:

    “Keep an eye out on Cincinnati when (not if) the Big 12 inevitably comes to the conclusion that it needs to expand.”
    ___________________

    Cincinnati and Connecticut want to remain in the AAC for as little time as possible, and once Dodds is out as AD in Austin, the rest of the Big 12 no longer will be under his thumb. The conference probably would prefer Clemson/Florida State, but the two UCs would give the Big 12 some presence in the east alongside West Virginia.

    • rdw.58 says:

      I’m not sure we’ll ever see UConn in the Big 12- I think a better partner for UC would be Memphis…larger market, great bball program, closer to B12 country…

    • JohnCassillo says:

      But does either school increase payouts? Because right now that’s the big issue for Big 12 expansion. They get the most per school at current because there’s just 10 of them. UConn and Cincinnati don’t really move the needle much and provide even larger outliers than WVU culturally and geographically. Plus, what would they use: a North/South alignment again? it would be more skewed than it ever was the first time around.

      I actually think UConn becomes the biggest loser of the formerly “BCS conference” schools because they’re the only one whose stature has visibly dropped in the realignment aftermath. USF is neutral, while Cincinnati has improved and may actually be in better position to move than the Huskies. If the ACC ever chooses to add, the new market of Ohio is better than a crowded northeast corridor already occupied by Syracuse and Boston College (plus Pitt, to a degree). For the Big 12, Cincy is much closer to WVU and provides an easier bridge should they choose to grab a nearby candidate (like perhaps NIU?) as program No. 12.

      Obviously, just conjecture, but the most likely programs for Big 12 expansion are (in order): Cincinnati, UCF, USF, UConn and NIU. BYU and Boise are out due to needing both in order to expand west and the fact that it would put the conference in a third time zone. With WVU, they have to remain east for the most part, which is where these other schools factor in. However, Boise and BYU are the only teams of those that will increase overall payouts enough that per-school payouts would be equal or greater than before.

      • vp19 says:

        I think Boise is losing some of its luster and is becoming the post-Tarkanian UNLV.

        • JohnCassillo says:

          Won’t jump to that conclusion just yet. Still on track to finish with 10 wins as of right now. Not too shabby at all. I think a lot of it’s due to several MWC programs catching up (Fresno, SDSU, Utah State) which eliminates recruits they would’ve otherwise locked down years ago. If they moved to the Big 12, they’d regain that advantage fairly quickly.

          • I’d hesitate to say Boise is on track for 10 wins, especially if you mean just regular season. 2 losses already and the best team they’ve beaten is 1-6 Air Force (Zoomies under 6.5 wins! whoo hoo!). I’d say 8 or 9 regular season wins is the most likely scenario at this point, though the Utah St game is a pretty big swing game for them. Win it and 10 becomes difficult but achievable. Lose it and even 8 seems like a reach with BYU, Wyoming, CSU etc. still to come.

          • JohnCassillo says:

            @Matthew Utah State’s not exactly a swing anymore with Keeton out, and Wyoming’s proven it’s still not “there” yet with loss to Texas State. BYU’s the last major test of the year and even then, the Cougars are just an average team. If they end the season with two losses — both to what could be top 15 teams — I don’t see that as a major step back. Just maybe not the heights we were used to them reaching four or five years ago.

      • Arch Stanton says:

        Northern Illinois is not even on Conference USA’s radar, much less the Big 12.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        But does either school increase payouts? Because right now that’s the big issue for Big 12 expansion. They get the most per school at current because there’s just 10 of them.

        No, which means it’s game over. The one invariable rule of expansion is that no one expands to lose money. I don’t think the Big XII can go back to the networks for more money unless they add Florida State or a comparable program (I can’t think of another one).

        Plus, what would they use: a North/South alignment again? it would be more skewed than it ever was the first time around.

        If it were financially compelling, they’d find a way around the alignment problem. But you’re right, this is a major issue if the Big XII ever expands. Last time, they were a 3-king league, so no matter what they did it would be a 2-1 split. They preserved the Red River Rivalry as an annual game, and sacrificed Oklahoma-Nebraska. Without Nebraska, any plausible split creates ridiculously unbalanced divisions.

        Obviously, just conjecture, but the most likely programs for Big 12 expansion are (in order): Cincinnati, UCF, USF, UConn and NIU.

        How about none, none, none, none, and none.

      • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

        John – I doubt anybody outside of the ACC (FSU, Miami, Clemson, VA Tech) would increase the B-12′s payout. The B-12 schools are grossly overpaid as it currently stands. The networks saved the B-12 and overpaid for it in order to put the brakes on realignment.

        I’ve long thought the best thing for the B-12 to do is expand with two football-only members. That way, a CCG may well come close to paying for the two football-only members’ share. I could see BYU and Boise, or Cincy and UConn, or UCF and USF accepting a football-only membership in the B-12. For the other sports, BYU is already in the WCC, Boise could go Big West, Cincy and UConn may be able to swing a Big East invite, and UCF & USF could go to any number of conferences.

  8. • “If we end up in the (Big Ten) and NCSU goes to the SEC then we may as well pack it in when it comes to football.”

    I found this comment particularly interesting. Although the long-term impacts of joining the SEC have yet to be seen, I think that A&M’s recent recruiting, fund-raising, on-field performance, and national exposure success will give any university and its supporters serious pause about allowing a major rival (especially an in-state rival) to join the SEC over itself.

  9. The fundamental problem with Big 12 expansion is that none of the potential candidates are remotely good enough to avoid substantially bringing down the average. If the #1 long-term priority for the league is to avoid driving Texas and/or Oklahoma to walk (and it clearly should be), then adding more mouths to feed that will only dilute the brand and the per school TV money average can only hurt. Especially if the new mouths to feed also represent long-distance plane flights just to get there.

    As it is, I think that Oklahoma and especially Texas made a mistake signing the current GoR extension (and I think that Texas has figured that one out as the rest of the league’s intransigence about LHN issues has basically torpedoed the network’s viability, and they got away with it because Texas was handcuffed). Even if the other 8 could force in members that UT/OU think are lesser, that would only provide more encouragement for those two to more seriously consider other long-term options.

    • ccrider55 says:

      “…as the rest of the league’s intransigence about LHN issues…”

      That goes both ways. Had UT spearheaded a conference wide network it would have been difficult to imagine it not enjoying far greater distribution, and have been a conference unifying entity.

      • Except, of course, that Texas would have been providing most of the value while getting a fraction of the return. The rest of the league is not ENTITLED to live off the Longhorn trough in every single aspect of life. Even if they think and act like they are.

        • ccrider55 says:

          Example A of why the Big 12 will always be the least stable major conference, until it exists no more…

        • ccrider55 says:

          And a great fit for the B1G.
          Are we really sure we want to invite that? Why would they want to share with Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, etc.

          • frug says:

            UNL and Texas A&M backed the Big XII’s unequal revenue sharing. Joe Paterno’s Grand Eastern Conference fell apart because PSU refused to allow any revenue sharing in football. USC and UCLA fought as hard as they could to keep unequal revenue sharing in the PAC.

      • frug says:

        Had UT spearheaded a conference wide network it would have been difficult to imagine it not enjoying far greater distribution, and have been a conference unifying entity.

        Until UT, OU and Kansas realized that a conference network would make them a fraction of what they could make by selling their TV rights on their own…

        • bullet says:

          Well, of course, only Texas and Nebraska had any interest in a network. A&M refused to explore a “Lone Star” network with Texas.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            bullet – I seem to remember that Texas only offered the Aggies a 20% share of the proposed Lone Star Network.

          • Wes Haggard says:

            Bullet, I expect you would not share for only twenty percent of the return either. Good for A&M.

          • frug says:

            To clarify what everyone is talking about, A&M administration claimed the reason the Aggies passed is that Texas insisting that UT be given 2/3 of the profits but that the two schools split the startup costs evenly. UT vehemently denied that.

            Obviously, both sides have a reason to lie and (to date) neither has ever produced any paperwork to substantiate their claims.

          • bullet says:

            The Texas story is the more logical one. According to Dodds, at the time, they weren’t sure that they might not have to pay to get the channel on (instead of being paid). Noone expected a lot of $. Bill Byrne and A&M weren’t interested.

            When asked about it afterwards, Byrne’s reply was, “Noone offered me half of a network paying $15 million a year.” Totally true and also misleading.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “Until UT, OU and Kansas realized that a conference network would make them a fraction of what they could make by selling their TV rights on their own…”

          What are you comparing to, a non existent network? Memory isn’t great but I seem to recall U of Az was buying out a brand new 10+M IMG contract, U O an 8M, etc. (and they are signing new IMG/Fox/learfield/etc local radio/media deals). That value will be recouped.

          I’m sure OU and UT could/did command even more in the uneven tier 1 deals. But at what cost, conference unrest? Doesn’t the rise in the marketablity of a common tier3 channel (BTN) and the morphing of it into a jr tier1 network (P12N) put these ventures in a similar place as the tier1 that OU/UT saw necessary/benificial to share equally? It isn’t like this would put ISU and UT’s athletic departments budgets on an equal footing. It would only assist the lower levels in trailing by a little less, and perhaps help the overall conference depth a little bit.

          • frug says:

            What are you comparing to, a non existent network?

            Due simply to population footprint and lack of content the longterm upside for a Big XII network would to distribute about half the revenue of the BTN and UT, OU and KU already make substantially more than that with their Tier III TV deals.

            I’m sure OU and UT could/did command even more in the uneven tier 1 deals. But at what cost, conference unrest? Doesn’t the rise in the marketablity of a common tier3 channel (BTN) and the morphing of it into a jr tier1 network (P12N) put these ventures in a similar place as the tier1 that OU/UT saw necessary/benificial to share equally?

            The thing you are missing is that the reason UT and OU were willing to accept equal revenue sharing for the Tier I and II rights was the fact they could make up the difference with their Tier III rights.

            With the current revenue system UT, OU and KU are all able to stay competitive financially with the PAC and well ahead of the ACC while still being members of the Big XII; with a Big XII Network they wouldn’t.

            To put it another way; the only reason the Big XII continues to exist is the LHN. If Texas were interested in being part of conference network they would join the PAC or the Big Ten.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “The thing you are missing is that the reason UT and OU were willing to accept equal revenue sharing for the Tier I and II rights was the fact they could make up the difference with their Tier III rights.”

            Exactly. They see it as now marketable enough to enable a shift in continued uneven distribution.

            “To put it another way; the only reason the Big XII continues to exist is the LHN.”

            Perhaps. But a B12N would have been a defacto Longhorn network, and would have had the inventory to be viable. The LHN is so far existing on the largess of ESPN, and local providers. Not how it was billed. And when ESPN’s interest in the LHN conflicts with their interest in the SECN?

            I’m not trying to be a hater. I just truly believe spreading the Longhorn brand over the whole conference would have provided long term B12 viability AND stability. I think you undervalue it’s worth. The LHN provides temporary viability.

          • frug says:

            I’m not trying to be a hater. I just truly believe spreading the Longhorn brand over the whole conference would have provided long term B12 viability AND stability. I think you undervalue it’s worth. The LHN provides temporary viability.

            Why would it make the Big XII anymore viable in the longterm. The schools that would benefit would be the have-nots, but ISU, KSU, Baylor and TTU aren’t the schools that are at risk to depart.

            But a B12N would have been a defacto Longhorn network, and would have had the inventory to be viable.

            No it wouldn’t have. It would have carried all the other schools’ games and reported on them as well.

            The LHN is so far existing on the largess of ESPN, and local providers. Not how it was billed.

            So? Texas still gets its $11 million a year and the right to brag they are only school in the country whose athletic department has 24 hour day network devoted to it. A Big XII network would offer neither.

            And when ESPN’s interest in the LHN conflicts with their interest in the SECN?

            No worse then what would happen when UT’s interests conflicted with say Baylor.

            My overall point remains this; the current model may not be as good for TTU, Baylor, ISU, TCU, K-State and perhaps OSU and WVU, but it is better for OU, UT and KU which means it is better for the conference’s longterm survival.

      • Mack says:

        UT proposed a Texas network to A&M but there was no interest from A&M until several years later when UT signed the deal with ESPN.

  10. swesleyh says:

    I find your statement that the leaders of UNC were totally unaware very telling. Many, many people stae on blogs that they are done with newspapers. That they get all of the info of daily happenings on the web. I contend that reading a newspaper provides one an overall view of a days happenings. That the web provides one a very selective reading. Most everyone has their favorite web sites and read what pertains to them at the moment, financial, sports, politics, etc and the big picture is foresaken.

    I am not surprised that 99% of the emails favored UNC’s move to the SEC. They are as Southern in attitude as they are in speech. Old timers definitly still hate the Yankees from the Civil War, crazy but true. And on this same thought, if the SEC money escalates to levels that some predict and ESPN won’t give the ACC their own very profitable network (likely) then the likely hood of UNC and UVA joining their academic brethren in the SEC goes way up.

    AAU = Vanderbilt, Florida, A&M, Missouri with Alabama and Georgia increasing their academic staure every year.

    The GOR for the Big Twelve may be holding back a new TV deal for the ten teams in the future. If the LHN continues to be not seen, the plug may be pulled and ESPN may settle a buy out, which would make UT an even better candidate for membership in the PAC or the B1G. If the B1G is successful in getting KU as a member and the PAC is successful in getting UT, TT, OU and OSU as members, what legal rights would the remaining five schools have in an organization that does not meet the minimum NCAA standards of a six team conference. How fast would Fox and ESPN pull the TV plug on their week viewings? Only UT and their next AD, maybe new President and coach, would have clues where UT’s direction might be. I just don’t see the B12 adding any new schools and I am betting they wish thay had added Louisville, Pitt and Cincinnati rather than WVU to start with.

    Ironic that their stated additions of “much better programs” than the ones leaving don’t look so much better in today’s light.

    • swesleyh says:

      Should have said academic and culteral brethryn.

    • “Old timers definitly still hate the Yankees from the Civil War, crazy but true.”

      That attitude pretty much sums up why there is still a substantial amount of bitterness in the South. While I personally am absolutely not one of the “South’s Gonna Rise Again” people and hold absolutely no resentment toward “Yankees”, I also don’t think that people are crazy, backward, etc. for holding on to their cultural heritage. There is a huge cultural bias towards Southerners in many ways, some of which are fair and some of which aren’t. In the North, the impacts of the Civil War ended very shortly thereafter, whereas in the South, they are still being felt to this day. Southerners are very aware of how we are perceived nationally and tend to be very sensitive (sometimes overly so) about it.

      • swesleyh says:

        Not so much in Texas but I sure did hear about that bitterness when I travel to visit kin and friends in South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia. Probably because of so many battlegrounds and the ravages of war passed down.

        • Texas is different from the rest of the South because there is a unique Texan identity that comes first. Most Texans self-identify as Texan or American first and Southern or even Western third, whereas in most of the rest of the South people self-identify as Southern or American first and with their state a distant third. I also think that the long influx of oil wealth into Texas traditionally put the state on much better economic footing than other Southern states.

        • bullet says:

          To my spouse’s grandmother in Georgia, Sherman was still a 4 letter word. But I think a lot has to do with the only politically correct prejudices are that against southerners and fundamentalists (of which there are a lot in the south). There’s a lot of looking down their nose by those in the north against the “backwards” southerners. The red/blue divide with Hollywood deep blue has exacerbated that.

          • Brian says:

            To be fair, there’s also a lot looking down their nose by others in the south against the “backwards” southerners.

      • Michael in Raleigh says:

        I like your observations, Jeffrey.

        To throw in my two cents, I grew up in South Carolina in the 90′s when the debate over what to do with the Confederate flag at the State House was the dominant political conversation. I grew up there and had family who grew up there going back generations, but I never felt that flag represented me or my family. I sure as heck didn’t think that flag represented in any way the over 1 million citizens who were black in that state, let alone anyone whose families came from other countries since the Civil War. Because of that a number of other issues, I felt South Carolina, in particular, took its obsession with its heritage as a Southern state so insanely seriously that I almost want to distance myself sometimes from that state.

        Later, I went to college in NC and lived here for a couple more years. Basically I felt this state was Southern but not in-your-face, obnoxious Southern. I’ve always liked North Carolina and, God willing, I’ll live here for decades to come.

        Moving to Indiana was great. I’ll admit I don’t have the stones to tolerate Midwestern winters for longer than the five years I was up there (and that was Lafayette & Indianapolis, not Chicago or Minneapolis!), but I thought the Midwest was as welcoming a place to move to as any place I can imagine. People are way, way more friendly in the Midwest than people in the South realize they are. For instance, I loved going running & biking on Indy’s greenways. I always got waves and hello’s from others. Many Southerners think they’re the only ones who do that.

        Raleigh, I felt, was a good place to transition back to the South. I would not have wanted to move from a fairly progressive city like Indy to South Carolina, and with Raleigh having such a mix of people, it was what I needed. To use the example about friendliness on the greenways, I’m not sure why this is, but people are NOT nearly as friendly on trails here as they were in Indiana (or in Chicago when I went on the lakefront trail). Overall, people are as friendly here as they are anywhere I’ve lived, but people just have a serious problem making eye-contact and smiling on the trails. It’s weird.

        (BTW, going from a state where I grew up with a whole lot of “South’s gonna rise again” attitude to a city with the gigantic Soliders & Sailors Monument facing south to “defend the union” and back to a state with Civil War memorials has been forced me to have a little culture shock, or at least as much as one can have from moving within the States.)

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          Thanks Micheal in Raleigh:

          My dad’s giant giant extended family was/is from Columbia; my mom grew up in Columbus. He came up in the late 50s to serve his residency at tOSU, they met, then a wedding, then babies, then the divorce (in the 60s mind you; much much less prevalent than today). As nearly always, Mom got custody.

          Part of the divorce decree was that we kids would spend the summer in South Carolina with dad (and the new wife and new kids, etc. etc.)

          Even for a youngster, there was culture shock. Every aunt, uncle, cousin we visited had all these paintings of Civil War generals and colonels and mementos and things related to the Civil War. The paintings/prints were the weirdest part to me. Why would you have some CW General or Jefferson Davis on your wall? The Civil War was ALIVE to them.

          Coming from Ohio, the Civil War was ancient history and certainly wasn’t a topic of weekly conversation.

          That was, of course, 40 years ago now.

          My dad says the intensity has noticeably lessened in the last 40 years. That makes sense. Aunt Blossom, the matriarch of the family back then, was in her 80s in 1970 or so. So, she was born before 1900; her parents probably had direct visceral experiences of the Civil War. Her grandfather and grand-uncles probably fought in the war; etc.

          When that generation passes, the actual memories die too. Now it is history in books, not history from someone’s memory.

          Anyway, it was strange to me coming from Ohio even being that young.

          On a positive note, flea markets in the South are much more interesting than in the North because of this. A fond memory was the first time I ran across Confederate money at a flea market with my dad. He was like “no big deal” (lots of that still floating around), but I was like “wow, cool man!” I never found Confederate money in flea markets up in Ohio. :-)

          As a complete aside, Columbus and Columbia have a whole bunch of things in common: state capital, big state university, medium-sized river running thru the middle, similar size and population (as of 1970s), etc. etc.

          As another aside, Michael you mention the cold and snow. I offer my a few memories on Columbia, South Carolina. I see in my mind’s eye red soil and lots of giant pine trees and the yard covered in pine needles. Coming from the black fertile farm country of Franklin County, Ohio, I was like: “why is the ground red?” LOL And we had grass and maples and oaks and leaves to rake in the autumn, but never pine trees and needles.

          By contrast, we all have the same crows. I heard the crows in the tops of the pine trees and I hear the same ‘caw caw caw’ up here. Weird how we remember sounds and smells.

          Then we went to some vacation islands off the coast and I remember round prickly things in the sand that hurt like heck if you stepped on them. I admit to not liking the beach because of those things ! LOL

          Well, I guess that was a fun trip down memory lane on this Football Saturday morning.

          North, South, East or West, I think we can agree there is one group we can all look down upon: people from Appalachia.

          • bullet says:

            I visited Charleston, SC around 1990 and sat through a short film downtown at the visitor center. It was total denial. Slavery was good for those people and they were well treated. Not an exact quote, but, that was the tone and it was kind of astounding to me. I think South Carolina (or at least Charleston) is at a whole ‘nother level than the rest of the South.

        • Tom says:

          I found this post pretty offensive. As if there aren’t racist minorities. You seem to want to pin everything “backwards” on Southerners. Try spending some time in Detroit or Philly.

    • bullet says:

      The Longhorn network is now on 7 of the top 10 cable providers. They still aren’t on the satellites (Dish and DirectTV-and they may get on Dish with the Disney/Dish negotiations) or Comcast. They really just need Comcast or one of the satellite providers to have pretty much complete coverage in Texas.

    • Mack says:

      Pitt obviously preferred the ACC. They got the ACC invite before WVU got the XII invite. I think the ACC acted fast in part because Pitt said they could not wait and risk being marooned in the BE with a XII bid in the works. Might be some regrets about Louisville but not Cincinnati.

    • bullet says:

      UNC’s leaders lack of awareness could be in part due to Swofford. One he’s been around a long time and they trust him. Two, the ACC seems to be uniquely secretive. I remember back when FSU and Clemson’s board were discussing leaving the ACC, the Clemson AD was saying he hadn’t seen the TV contract and was having a hard time getting to see it. Apparently it was only kept at the conference office.

      Some talk about Dodds influencing realignment. I don’t think he did much more than advise President Powers on Texas moving and that Powers made all the calls. I do think Dodds had a lot of influence on what the Big 12 did. Well, Delaney, Swofford and Slive are all near retirement age, so the leadership of those 3 conferences will all change in the near future. That will have an impact on the thinking of those conferences.

  11. swesleyh says:

    Last attempt, cultural

  12. Wainscott says:

    The outpouring of support from UNC alumni for the SEC jives with this map of UNC alumni, taken from the UNC alumni page:

    http://alumni.unc.edu/pdf/WhereWeLive%20Spring2012%20Clubs_SCREEN.pdf

    States with the most UNC alumni:
    1) NC (obviously)
    Big Gap:
    2) Virginia
    3) Georgia
    4) Florida
    5) California
    6) New York
    7) South Carolina
    8) Maryland
    9) Texas
    10) Pennsylvania

    While presidents and athletic directors make decisions, alumni donations fund the school. Seeing this concentration of alumni in the southeast gives me pause to think that UNC’s Chancellor would risk losing alumni support (read: donation) to potentially join the B1G, especially when SEC money will be comparable or greater.

    My takeaway: UNC will bail from the ACC only at the last possible moment before it bursts into flames, and not before. I’m not as certain as I was that academics will play as big as a role in the face of extreme alumni preference.

    • swesleyh says:

      My thoughts too. Money from and happiness from grads still drives the bus.

      • Wainscott says:

        Yes, and in UVa’s case, lots of money from NYC-area hedge fund types, like Paul Tudor Jones II, who gave money to have the new arena on campus named for his dad, John Paul Jones. His father lives in Memphis; he resides in Greenwich, CT.

        • @Wainscott – Yes, UVA has a heavier “Northern” influence with its alumni concentration in the Northeast and the fact that even its own home state population is increasingly coming from the NoVA suburbs of DC (which is turning more Northern culturally in the way that Maryland has already shifted). I’d be extremely surprised if they’d ever entertain going to the SEC – it’s really either the ACC or Big Ten for them. There’s at least more of a case of UNC choosing the SEC.

          • opossum says:

            The attraction of the B1G to UVA is vastly overrated. Maryland went from being the fourth or fifth best public school (and the bottom half overall) in the ACC to being firmly in the top half of the B1G academically. Aside from athletics, I can see where it is a good move for them to be associated with Penn State, Rutgers, Ohio State, Indiana, and Illinois rather than being compared unfavorably to UVA and UNC and lumped in with VT, NC State and FSU.

            Virginia moving to the B1G would be lateral at best, they’d be one of the top schools in the B1G too. It would do nothing positive for their reputation and might even hurt it (Mr. Jefferson’s University transcends state boundaries, and only happens to be in Virginia because that’s where He lived – unlike most B1G schools which are truly universities “of” their states). Virginia is technically a public school, but financial ties to the Commonwealth are shaky, and UVA has a lot more in common as an institution with Duke or Wake Forest than it does with Michigan or Wisconsin, even leaving regional ties aside. The only B1G school UVA would consider a peer is Northwestern. I’m not saying these views are justified, just that it is UVA’s version of reality.

            That being said, it’s clear from the emails that some administrators at UNC were worried that other schools were looking at leaving the ACC, including possibly UVA. I’d chalk that up to surprise at the secrecy around Maryland’s departure.

          • @opposum – The thought that Maryland would move because it thought that it would rank higher on the Big Ten academic pecking order compared to the ACC is laughable. The “4th or 5th best” public school in the ACC comment is disingenuous. I’m assuming you’re taking the latest US News rankings, where Maryland is tied with 2 other schools (Clemson and Pitt) for 3rd best public school in the ACC. Historically, Maryland has ranked higher than Clemson and Pitt in those rankings and it’s clear from the admissions stats that Maryland is tougher to gain admission to by comparison.

            Also, Michigan, Penn State, Wisconsin, Illinois and Ohio State are all more highly ranked in US News than all 3 of Clemson, Pitt and Maryland, so Maryland’s relative standing among its fellow conference public schools went down in the Big Ten compared to the ACC. And this is in the US News undergrad rankings that is more biased toward the smaller class size private schools that largely populate the top part of the ACC as opposed to the public schools. In the graduate research world, there’s no contest – the Big Ten is ahead by a wide margin.

          • @opossum – Now, that’s not to say that Virginia wouldn’t want to move to the Big Ten because of its historical ties to the South. I could see a cultural barrier there (although I see that diminishing with the demographic changes in the state). I just find the notion that UVA wouldn’t be interested in the Big Ten because it’s not an academic fit to be bogus.

          • frug says:

            @opossum

            The attraction of the B1G to UVA is vastly overrated. Maryland went from being the fourth or fifth best public school (and the bottom half overall) in the ACC to being firmly in the top half of the B1G academically. Aside from athletics, I can see where it is a good move for them to be associated with Penn State, Rutgers, Ohio State, Indiana, and Illinois rather than being compared unfavorably to UVA and UNC and lumped in with VT, NC State and FSU.

            Virginia moving to the B1G would be lateral at best, they’d be one of the top schools in the B1G too. It would do nothing positive for their reputation and might even hurt it

            While UVA has strong undergrad ranks, according to both Times Higher Education (my choice for the best university rankings by far) and ARWU, UVA would be one of the lowest ranked schools in the Big Ten (Maryland by the way outranks the Cavs in both). The culprit is UVA’s (relatively) small research budget. (A desire to increase the schools researching ranks is why the school hired Michigan’s former VP to serve as president)

            I agree that UVA has more in common with the ACC schools (which are generally undergrad focused), but if they are serious about improving their research standings a move to the Big Ten (and CIC) would be a major upgrade.

          • Brian says:

            opossum,

            “Maryland went from being the fourth or fifth best public school (and the bottom half overall) in the ACC to being firmly in the top half of the B1G academically.”

            By what measure(s)?

            ARWU: 29. UMD

            B10 – 17. WI. 18. MI, 19. IL, 21. MN, 22. NW, 37. PSU, 38. PU, 39. RU, 41. OSU, 47. IN, 50. MSU, 53-67. IA

            ACC – 23. Duke, 30. UNC, 39. Pitt, 53-67. GT, 53-67. UVA

            UMD would be 6th in the B10 but 2nd in the ACC.

            MUP: 42. UMD

            B10 – 7. MI, 11. WI, 15. MN, 18. NW, 22. OSU, 25. IL, 29. PSU, 38. PU, 39. MSU, 50. IA

            ACC – 6. Duke, 15. UNC, 22. Pitt, 39. GT, 39. UVA

            UMD would be 10th in the B10 but 6th in the ACC.

            THE Rankings: 97. UMD

            B10 – 19. NW, 20. MI, 31. WI, 33. IL, 47. MN, 53. OSU, 61. PSU, 69. PU, 94. MSU, 99. RU
            ACC – 23. Duke, 25. GT, 42. UNC, 76. Pitt

            UMD would be 10th in the B10 but 5th in the ACC.

            USN&WR: 62. UMD

            B10 – 12. NW, 28. MI, 37. PSU, 41. IL, 41. WI, 52. OSU, 68. PU, 69. RU, 69. MN, 73. MSU, 73. IA, 75. IN

            ACC – 7. Duke, 23. UVA, 23. WF, 30. UNC, 31. BC, 36. GT, 62. Clemson, 62. Syracuse, 62. Pitt, 69. VT

            UMD would be 7th in the B10 and the ACC.

            UMD isn’t bottom half in the ACC but it will be in the B10.

          • opossum says:

            @FTT

            I think you misunderstood me — if the ACC somehow vanished tomorrow, I think UVA would consider the B1G one of the best alternatives to the ACC among FBS conferences, but I don’t think they would see it as an academic upgrade by any means, unlike Maryland.

            It’s not just dwindling regional ties keeping UVA from leaving a healthy ACC for the B1G. UVA as an institution has more in common with elite undergrad-focused private schools than it does with graduate STEM and Agriculture research-focused public schools like Maryland or Iowa. It has fewer state ties and greater autonomy than your average public school as well. And there is no friendlier home for elite private schools and their public equivalents in the FBS than the ACC.

            As for Maryland’s place in the ACC pecking order, I count three public schools clearly head and shoulders above Maryland in the ACC (UNC, UVA and Georgia Tech), not to mention all the private schools. Your US News list has five of those ranked higher than Maryland (Duke, Wake, Notre Dame, Boston College and Miami). So by that list (which is based on criteria that are more important to most ACC schools than they are to most B1G schools) they are tied for ninth with Pitt, Clemson and Syracuse.

            Maryland benefits from being associated with the public schools in the B1G because catching up to Penn State or Ohio State or Illinois in national academic esteem is attainable. Maryland would have never caught up to UVA and UNC in the ACC, much less the private schools. In contrast, UVA might suffer if it’s considered to be “just like Penn State, but in Virginia,” or “the Illinois of the mid-Atlantic.” The only school UVA would consider an equal in the B1G is Northwestern. Again, I am talking about UVA’s self-perception, not necessarily reality. It is impossible to over estimate their self esteem.

            @frug

            Yes, maintaining their status as an elite national undergrad university is much more important to UVA than getting an extra $100 million from NSF to research nanotechnology or whatever. Agree, disagree, call it short sighted, but it’s where they are coming from.

          • frug says:

            Maryland benefits from being associated with the public schools in the B1G because catching up to Penn State or Ohio State or Illinois in national academic esteem is attainable. Maryland would have never caught up to UVA and UNC in the ACC, much less the private schools

            Based on what? Maryland is further behind Illinois in the Times Higher Education ratings (29 vs. 108) than they are behind UVA in the USNWR rankings (29 vs. 62).

          • BruceMcF says:

            Aha @opossum ~ when you said “academically”, you didn’t mean actual academic status, you meant some undergrad academic ranking.

            @frug ~ yes, UVA’s research budget would tend to be lower than their academic status, since a number of their top flight grad school departments are in disciplines that don’t often generate the big bucks research grants.

    • Wainscott says:

      In contrast, the states with the most UVa alumni:

      1.Virginia – 79,377
      2.New York – 10,364
      3.Maryland – 9,835
      4.California – 9,733
      5.North Carolina – 8,874

      http://uvamagazine.org/thelist/article/states_with_highest_populations_of_u.va._alumni#.UlhKEGzD_Gg

      I couldn’t find a UMd list, but from the alumni association website, there is a definite northeast/mid-atlantic concentration of alumni clubs.

      • swesleyh says:

        But many of the posters on here favor UVA and UNC going together, for old times sake.

        • Wainscott says:

          Not for old times sake as much as both school’s great academic reputations, location in growing states, concentrations of alumni, culture, etc…

          But I can easily foresee the schools ending up in different conferences should both leave the ACC. Wouldn’t be surprised at all if the SEC got, say, UNC and Va Tech, and the B1G one day got UVa and, say, Oklahoma or Kansas.

        • frug says:

          So why assume that UVA would be the school to compromise?

          • vp19 says:

            Virginia is changing as a state. Northern Virginia continues to grow substantially faster than the rest of the commonwealth, and thanks to D.C. and high tech, that’s where the money is.

        • vp19 says:

          Virginia and North Carolina have one of the nation’s oldest football rivalries — in fact, for several decades, as recently as 1957 (the fifth year of the ACC), they met in the traditional season finale. The rivalry has receded considerably on the UNC side, thanks to State, Duke and to a lesser extent Wake. It’s stronger from the UVa perspective, although the rise of Virginia Tech over the past half-century has diminished that, too. It’s entirely possible UVa-UNC could go the way of Nebraska-Kansas or A&M-Texas, especially as the commonwealth of Virginia develops more of a northern identity.

    • Brian says:

      With 150 votes so far, the newspaper’s poll results:

      Are you happy UNC stayed in the ACC?

      Yes – 75 (50%)
      No – 69 (46%)
      Maybe – 6 (4%)

    • Andy says:

      Yep, Wainscott gets it.

  13. Carl says:

    Hockey Valley!

  14. frug says:

    For the past year, I’ve been pointing out that conference realignment really hinges on three primary schools: Texas, Notre Dame and North Carolina. The first two are fairly obvious to football-focused fans, but UNC is really the true lynchpin to the ACC.

    1. As I have said before, FSU is every bit as important to the ACC’s future as UNC. Sure UNC is “political” leader of the conference but FSU is its most valuable asset (by far) and FSU’s departure would inflict just as much damage to the ACC as a UNC bolting. The ACC needs both of them to survive.

    2. At this point Oklahoma is lynchpin also. Not even a school as powerful as Texas could rebuild the Big XII if the Sooners went elsewhere.

    3. Not sure how much lynchpin ND has ever really been. Sure they are valuable, but the fact that they are independent limits how much of an effect they would have by switching conferences. While Notre Dame would certainly help whatever conference they joined the fact that their departure wouldn’t do a huge amount of damage to any other conference means they can never really have the sort of impact that UT, OU, UNC, FSU or even UVA, V-Tech, or Clemson would have if they switched leagues.

    FSU’s life won’t greatly change in the Big 12. The Big 12 TV deal is pro-rata for any new member and their TV distribution is only about $1 (million) more than the ACC. The Big 12 is going to take in $13 (million) more in BCS money – around $1 (million) per school.

    “So for $2 to $3 (million) bucks, FSU is going to go through the trauma of switching leagues?”

    More delusion from the ACC.

    1. The Big XII payout (that’s not just TV money) is already significantly higher than the ACC’s. Last year’s Big XII payout was $26 million. The ACC’s was $18.

    2. Even if it is pro-rata (and who knows if that is true) for expansion the Big XII would get an additional bonus for adding a CCG. That would be worst at least a million bucks a school.

    3. In the Big XII FSU would be allowed to keep its Tier III TV rights. Oklahoma makes about $7 million a year selling them, and I would assume FSU would be able to get a similar deal.

    4. The part about the BCS money is a flat out lie. The Sugar Bowl deal will pay each Big XII schools $4 million a year (80/2/10), while the ACC’s Orange Bowl deal will pay each school less than $2 million a year (55/2/14).

    • frug says:

      Last year’s Big XII payout was $26 million. The ACC’s was $18.

      Should read 20 not 26.

    • Brian says:

      frug,

      “1. As I have said before, FSU is every bit as important to the ACC’s future as UNC. Sure UNC is “political” leader of the conference but FSU is its most valuable asset (by far) and FSU’s departure would inflict just as much damage to the ACC as a UNC bolting. The ACC needs both of them to survive.”

      FSU may have more financial value (it’d be the clear leader if the ACCN gets started), but UNC is the glue keeping other schools there. If UNC left, it’s almost guaranteed UVA and/or Duke and/or NCSU would also leave. FSU could conceivably leave by itself (they wouldn’t, but nobody else’s membership is as beholden to their presence as UNC’s).

      “2. At this point Oklahoma is lynchpin also. Not even a school as powerful as Texas could rebuild the Big XII if the Sooners went elsewhere.”

      OU is key, but UT is more important. More importantly, I don’t think OU goes anywhere without UT whereas UT could leave without OU (they probably wouldn’t, though).

      “3. Not sure how much lynchpin ND has ever really been. Sure they are valuable, but the fact that they are independent limits how much of an effect they would have by switching conferences.”

      Their importance is that they would start the dominoes falling everywhere. Other conferences would have to make moves to compete with someone adding ND fully. But you’re right, they don’t leave a hole that has to be filled.

      “3. In the Big XII FSU would be allowed to keep its Tier III TV rights. Oklahoma makes about $7 million a year selling them, and I would assume FSU would be able to get a similar deal.”

      It’s interesting how often TPTB forget about these tier 3 rights unless it suits their argument to mention them.

      “4. The part about the BCS money is a flat out lie. The Sugar Bowl deal will pay each Big XII schools $4 million a year (80/2/10), while the ACC’s Orange Bowl deal will pay each school less than $2 million a year (55/2/14).”

      I’d blame lazy math rather than calling it a lie. I think they saw $40M versus $27.5M and said the difference is $13M, or $1M per school. They forgot the size difference between the conferences.

      • @Brian – Correct. UNC leaving the ACC means that conference is truly dead. There would no doubt be a mass exodus if that were to happen. In contrast, the impact of FSU leaving the ACC is more like the cumulative effect of the Big 12 losing Nebraska, Colorado, Texas A&M and Missouri – it may leave the league mortally wounded, but the presence of the centerpiece (Texas in the Big 12 and UNC to the ACC) would allow for it to live.

        Let’s put it this way: UNC could still conceivably stay in the ACC if FSU leaves. There’s NFW that FSU stays in the ACC if UNC leaves.

        • frug says:

          @Brian – Correct. UNC leaving the ACC means that conference is truly dead. There would no doubt be a mass exodus if that were to happen. In contrast, the impact of FSU leaving the ACC is more like the cumulative effect of the Big 12 losing Nebraska, Colorado, Texas A&M and Missouri – it may leave the league mortally wounded, but the presence of the centerpiece (Texas in the Big 12 and UNC to the ACC) would allow for it to live.

          Let’s put it this way: UNC could still conceivably stay in the ACC if FSU leaves. There’s NFW that FSU stays in the ACC if UNC leaves.

          I understand don’t get what is so hard about this. The fact is the ACC is desperate for cash. Period. No debate. That is why they expanded, it is why they lost Maryland and (most notably) it is why they abandoned 60 years of tradition to offer ND everything the Irish ever wanted for what amounted to 1 FB game a year despite having ruled out the possibility less than a year earlier.

          If FSU left the ACC would no longer be financially viable as a power conference. They would take a massive to hit their TV deal and probably lose their Orange Bowl tie in. Schools that are already wavering (like V-Tech, UVA (who by the way is one of the most heavily subsidized AD’s in the country), Clemson, G-Tech and Miami) would jump as soon as they could and UNC is not going to stay in a mid-major.

          You keep saying that UNC is the ACC what UT is to the Big XII but that is just not factually accurate. UNC does not have the absolute value that UT does nor does it have the marginal value to the ACC that UT does to the Big XII.

          • vp19 says:

            As long as Florida State can’t join the SEC, it has no realistic place to go. Big Ten presidents aren’t going to be coerced into taking a non-AAU institution that isn’t Notre Dame (a far more impeccable undergraduate institution than FSU), and the Big 12 is too unstable to draw interest.

          • BuckeyeBeau says:

            @ Frug:

            you say: “If FSU left the ACC would no longer be financially viable as a power conference. They would take a massive to hit their TV deal and probably lose their Orange Bowl tie in.”

            I am not saying you are wrong. That sounds plausible.

            But do you have any numbers? any links? anything to substantiate this?

            What do you define as “massive hit” to the TV deal? Also, is there, in fact, a “massive hit” given the TV draw of ACC basketball? Keep in mind the pretty good deal that the [new] Big East received.

            What do you define as a “power conference?” Again, I think I agree with you, but let’s get down to some specifics. Does the ACC become like the old Big East or the current AAC?

            Assume FSU leaves. In your view, are there automatic dominoes like Miami or Clemson? Is your argument based on those “dominoes” falling? I ask because, if ONLY FSU leaves, then assume Cincy is the backfill, the ACC is not horrible horrible as a football conference.

            ND, Clemson, Miami, Cincy, Louisville, GT, BC, Pitt, VT, WF, NCST, UNC, Duke, UVa, Syr,

          • BuckeyeBeau says:

            vp19 said: “As long as Florida State can’t join the SEC, it has no realistic place to go.”

            I tend to agree with this since I think the BXII is not realistic.

            @ Frug: that is another reason to say that UNC is THE lynchpin of the ACC. UNC can go to the B1G or SEC whenever it wants. Practically speaking, FSU really can’t go anywhere unless UNC leaves first.

          • bullet says:

            The ACC might survive the loss of FSU. Depends on the TV people. They couldn’t survive the loss of FSU and Miami or FSU and Virginia Tech. Those 3 are their dominant football programs in the BCS era. One wouldn’t be enough to carry them. They would look more like the MWC and AAC than the B1G/Pac/SEC/Big 12. Those 3 each have about 20% of the conferences AP Poll points since 1998. And the ACC is 5th even with them.

          • frug says:

            As long as Florida State can’t join the SEC, it has no realistic place to go. Big Ten presidents aren’t going to be coerced into taking a non-AAU institution that isn’t Notre Dame (a far more impeccable undergraduate institution than FSU), and the Big 12 is too unstable to draw interest.

            I agree with that, but it doesn’t change the fact that the ACC’s survival is tied to FSU.

            I am not saying you are wrong. That sounds plausible.

            But do you have any numbers? any links? anything to substantiate this?

            I don’t have links right now, though I do remember an SBNation blog running the numbers that showed the relative TV value of the ACC schools and FSU was number one by a decent margin. But I also don’t have any definite proof that UNC leaving would automatically cause any other ACC school to bolt either.

            What do you define as “massive hit” to the TV deal?

            Well theoretically any reduction would be a massive hit since in the history of realignment no one has ever willing taken a pay cut and any school with other options stayed in the ACC after a payout reduction it would result in a pay cut.

            Also, is there, in fact, a “massive hit” given the TV draw of ACC basketball? Keep in mind the pretty good deal that the [new] Big East received.

            Yes, ACC basketball is a good draw, but 80% of the ACC TV contract is football (that is what the conference itself stated when they added Notre Dame).

            Also, the Big East’s “pretty good deal” is $4 million a year, or about 1/5th of what the ACC receives.

            What do you define as a “power conference?” Again, I think I agree with you, but let’s get down to some specifics. Does the ACC become like the old Big East or the current AAC?

            I think they lose their Orange Bowl tie in.

            Assume FSU leaves. In your view, are there automatic dominoes like Miami or Clemson? Is your argument based on those “dominoes” falling? I ask because, if ONLY FSU leaves, then assume Cincy is the backfill, the ACC is not horrible horrible as a football conference.

            Cincy couldn’t backfill for FSU. They aren’t strong enough financially or competitively (on the other hand, UConn BB could do a pretty good job replacing UNC…)

            Am I assume dominoes? Yes. But other people assume those when they talk about UNC so I don’t see why that is an issue.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I think @vp19 and @BuckeyeBeau have the key point. FSU’s got nowhere to go, which is why they won’t be the ones who kill the ACC. Only North Carolina can do that.

          • frug says:

            I think @vp19 and @BuckeyeBeau have the key point. FSU’s got nowhere to go, which is why they won’t be the ones who kill the ACC. Only North Carolina can do that.

            Actually, no. FSU does have a place to go; the Big XII. It’s just that FSU has (for the time being at least) reached the same conclusion that UNC has reached with regards to the Big 10 and SEC; they aren’t ready to switch conferences for purely financial reasons.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            Vincent & frug – the SEC and ESPN have discussed that they envision the SECN being a national network. If that vision comes to fruition, then maybe in 10-12 years, the SEC could then take Florida State since state duplication wouldn’t matter.

            Its hard to argue with FSU’s run in the 90s, but they really should have joined the SEC when they had the chance.

        • omniorange says:

          The reason why I agree with frug is that UNC “wants” the ACC to remain a player and for them to remain in it. FSU would entertain bolting if either the SEC or the BiG were truly interested in them, especially the SEC.

          UNC is “wanted” by both those conferences, but it does not want either. FSU wants in on those conferences (again, moreso the SEC than the BiG), but at the moment neither want the Seminoles.

          Both are equally important in terms of ACC survival, since if either go, the ACC’s days are numbered as a player in college athletics even if it remains in some configuration. UNC is more important in terms of individually being a power player to other conferences. But if UNC remained and FSU went, UNC by itself would not make the ACC a significant player in college athletics. It just wouldn’t.

          That’s how I see it.

        • opossum says:

          I completely agree that FSU leaving would cripple but not kill the ACC. I think any discussion of the core ACC schools (UVA, VT, NCSU, UNC, Wake, Duke, Clemson and Georgia Tech) splitting up into different conferences. If either of the two money conferences want in on the Virginia and the Carolinas, they’re going to have to take them all.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            If either of the two money conferences want in on the Virginia and the Carolinas, they’re going to have to take them all.

            This is not a prediction either way, but the prospect of Texas A&M splitting from Texas was once widely considered unthinkable…and look at where we are.

            One must take with great caution any absolute statement about what schools would or wouldn’t do, if the money were better somewhere else.

          • opossum says:

            @ Marc Shepard

            Let me put it this in B1G terms. If the ACC were potentially making significantly more money than the B1G, how likely would it be for the ACC to lure (or “grab”) one or two of Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, and Wisconsin? I’d say it would take extremely dire circumstances or some kind of cataclysmic change to cause any of them to join the ACC. Money would not be enough. It’s exactly the same with the core ACC schools.

            TAMU was less than twenty years away from surviving the SEC and B8 raids of the Southwest Conference, losing most of their conference mates in the process, and had seen two schools leave and others including Texas threaten to leave en masse for conferences they had no interest in joining (B1G and PAC12). I don’t know the dynamic in Texas as well as I do in SEC/ACC country but I understand they had a little brother type dynamic with UT, and there was also bad blood over the Longhorn Network.

            There is nothing similar going on in the ACC. NC State may be a little brother to UNC, and VT to UVA, but UNC and NC State share a board of trustees, so neither does anything in conference realignment without the other. VT and UVA would have political problems leaving the other behind. Plus they don’t want to.

            In short, anyone thinking up scenarios where the B1G “raids” the ACC, just picture Ohio State or Purdue leaving the B1G for the ACC in 2001 (when the ACC made more money). I know you can never say never, but keep in mind both scenarios are exactly as plausible.

          • frug says:

            I don’t know. If half the Big Ten teams had joined the conference in the past 10 years, was trapped in a terrible TV deal that was result of nepotism by commissioner the conference refuses to fire, had just lost a founding member to the ACC, thrown aside its academic standards in order to placate a couple disgruntled members and completely sold out everything the conference said it has stood for from its inception by adding Notre Dame as a partial member after pledging not to do so for decades in a desperate cash grab, then, yeah, I could see some Big Ten members defecting.

          • Mack says:

            What holds the ACC together is the SEC’ and B1G’ disinterest in the schools that will bolt: FSU GT. BC, Pitt, Louisville, and Syracuse. VT has barely been in the ACC 10 years, hardly “core”. The emails mentioned VA and FSU had to be convinced to sign the Grant of Rights. Everyone knew FSU wanted to keep the barriers to an ACC exit low, but VA? So at least one core member wanted to keep its options open. I agree with the main point: It will take more than money for the North Carolina schools to leave the ACC.

            Texas A&M wanted to join the SEC with Texas when the SWC went under. Texas preferred both join the PAC. The Baylor alumnus Governor preferred the B8 offer that formed the XII and included Baylor. Less than 20 years later the A&M alumnus Governor had no issues with A&M joining the SEC. A&M would have left when Nebraska did, but the politics were not right. The LHN had nothing to do with A&M leaving, it was just used to build the political and fan case to leave Texas. If the LHN did not exist, A&M would have found some other slight to whip up its fan base. As all the A&M leaders openly admit now, the decision to leave was made in 2010 when Nebraska and Colorado left. They just had to work the politics to make it happen and that took time and timing (no accident the announcement was right after the legislature session ended). Given enough time, the same could happen with any of the linked schools if one wanted to break away from the other.

          • metatron says:

            I’d sooner see independence than Michigan join the ACC.

      • frug says:

        “2. At this point Oklahoma is lynchpin also. Not even a school as powerful as Texas could rebuild the Big XII if the Sooners went elsewhere.”

        OU is key, but UT is more important. More importantly, I don’t think OU goes anywhere without UT whereas UT could leave without OU (they probably wouldn’t, though).

        I do think they would prefer to stick together, but OU was willing to go to the PAC in 2011 without Texas. They also reached out to the Big Ten independently of the Longhorns. I agree Texas is more important but the at this point net effect either leaving is the same.

        • Brian says:

          frug,

          More importantly, I don’t think OU goes anywhere without UT whereas UT could leave without OU (they probably wouldn’t, though).

          “I do think they would prefer to stick together, but OU was willing to go to the PAC in 2011 without Texas.”

          And the P12 said no.

          “They also reached out to the Big Ten independently of the Longhorns.”

          And the B10 said no. I didn’t say it was by choice, but I don’t think OU goes anywhere without UT.

          “I agree Texas is more important but the at this point net effect either leaving is the same.”

          I’d agree, but I don’t currently see a plausible scenario where OU leaves and UT doesn’t while I can see the reverse.

          • frug says:

            I’d agree, but I don’t currently see a plausible scenario where OU leaves and UT doesn’t while I can see the reverse.

            I can’t see the reverse though because as long as no one else is willing to take on the LHN Texas won’t leave unless the Big XII becomes unacceptable competitively which would only happen if OU left…

          • ccrider55 says:

            “And the P12 said no.”

            The PAC said they were happily staying at 12. No assignment of credit or blame.

            The Monday midnight eastern time announcement, and the failure of OU to take the expected steps once granted board permission to explore conference alternatives, suggests to me that OU was using the PAC as leverage right before the B12 meetings. The PAC found out and let UT (and everyone else) know the west was out of the expansion market, for the moment.

  15. Andy says:

    I think its pretty clear what the long term game plan is for the SEC.

    UNC is the prize they want.

    UNC’s fans are seeminlgy happy about joining the SEC.

    UNC’s administrators aren’t ready yet.

    What would hold them back? Two things: academics and basketball.

    Neither can be fixed overnight.

    The SEC only had 2 AAU schools. Now they had 4. They reached out and purposefully picked a second AAU member in Missouri.

    Missouri also helps out in basketball. And they’ve been directing SEC member instittuions to try to improve their basketball programs.

    Now there’s a 10-12 year delay for the SEC to work on these things.

    Also another 10-12 years to work on the SEC Network and revenue.

    Then when Grant of Rights is coming to a close, make a hard push for UNC, point out improved academics and basketball and huge revenue differentials between the SEC and ACC.

    Also play up cultural fit.

    Also offer rival Duke, which also helps with academics, basketball, and cultural fit.

    Get UNC and Duke and suddenly the SEC is not only the dominant football power, but also basketball as well, and academics would be completely respectable.

    We’ll find out in 10-15 years if the plan works.

    I truly don’t think UNC will ever join the B1G. Virginia may very well do it though.

    Maybe UNC + Duke to the SEC and UVA + VT for the B1G.

    • @Andy – I think what you’re saying is plausible. The one thing that I’d point out is that the “cultural advantage” that the SEC has in competing for UNC over the Big Ten is very clear now, but is one that’s going to dissipate over time with so many Northern transplants relocating to the state (just as it has already occurred in Maryland and continues to occur in Virginia) and their kids (with their different sensibilities, whether cultural or political) start becoming the bulk of new UNC grads. If the SEC can’t take advantage of that within the next 10 years, they may never be able to do it.

      • bullet says:

        I doubt that NC is becoming more “northern.” Remember W? His Dad was from Connecticut. A lot of northerners are becoming southernized. I would be interested to see Michael’s thoughts on that since he lives there. As the nation is getting more mobile, the regional extremes are getting less, but they still exist.

        • Michael in Raleigh says:

          I can offer my observations. Take it for what you feel it’s worth.

          Cary, NC is comprised with a very solid majority of people who aren’t from North Carolina, and while no region represents a majority, the northeast seems to be where most people are originally from.

          Raleigh is no longer exactly southern. It’s not northern, either, but southern accents are the exception, not the rule here.

          Durham I would describe as a truly southern city, save for Duke and suburban housing developments which have developed just in the past 15 years. The core of Duke is southern.

          The off-campus part of Chapel Hill is two things: diverse and (mostly) liberal. People from all over the world live in Chapel Hill. It’s an expensive place to live (compared to most parts of the state). It’s also very liberal given its location in the South. It’s not quite Madison or Berkeley, but it’s up there.

          Charlotte–maybe it’s doesn’t feel as southern as many other parts of NC, and granted, BofA and Wells Fargo do draw a lot of people from the Northeast and Midwest, but it’s still a Southern City, in my book. I mean, Atlanta draws people from everywhere, too, but it’s very much southern, SEC territory, right. Charlotte is the crossroads of the ACC and SEC, with not a lot of attention on other leagues despite transplants.

          Everywhere else in the state, which is quite a substantial portion of the population (Greensboro, Winston-Salem, High Point, Fayetteville, Wilmington, Charlotte’s suburbs, Asheville, dozens of other, more rural counties) is decisively southern.

          Furthermore, as much as Raleigh and Chapel Hill are not as “southern” as the areas around them… NC State and UNC are. UNC, for example, has a Confederate memorial prominently placed on their main campus. They are also the state schools, drawing students most often from families who themselves are from the south, if not NC. When they draw students whose families were from elsewhere, the students themselves still grew up in NC on, you know, ACC basketball and football. They grew up knowing the SEC as the dominant football league; why would they want to join the Big Ten.

          Now, money can influence administrators to do a lot of things in spite of alumni & fan sentiment. But culturally, we are a long, long way off from the universities becoming anything other than southern. It’s not like it was in Maryland, which has the vast majority of its population based on two urban areas (Baltimore and suburban DC), both of which have been culturally much more like Philly or New York than anything in the South for many decades now. Nothing in North Carolina is like that, but there are cities in North Carolina that feels like Tennessee or Alabama or Georgia.

          • bullet says:

            That’s about what I would have guessed. I had a sister live many years in Charlotte and Wilmington and it never felt “northern” to me at all. Also had a good friend in Cary. But I never lived in Carolina and didn’t spend extensive time there. Your description of Chapel Hill sounds a lot like Austin relative to the rest of Texas.

          • Michael Burt says:

            I have not ever been to Austin (would like to, though), but I kind of thought CH might have a similar contrast. Chapel Hill is a beautiful town and there’s something wrong with you if you don’t like their campus, even if you hate UNC. But it’s interesting how set apart it is from the rest of the state and even the rest of the Triangle. The border between CH and Durham is basically I-40, and you can just tell a difference between either side.

      • Andy says:

        Frank, replace 10 years with 30 years and I might agree with you. It seems a long way from done at this point.

        • Psuhockey says:

          Andy,
          The culture in North Carolina is much more likely to change faster than the academic prestige of the SEC. Academic reputation is built over decades and the SEC is a long way from improving the perception among high end administrators that is nothing but a jock conference. As far as snooty academics are concerned, it’s Florida, Vanderbilt, and a bunch of meatheads and bible thumping rednecks.

          • Andy says:

            Florida, Vandy, A&M, and Mizzou have B1G-level academics. Georgia isn’t far off. Kentucky ranks very respectably on the research rankings. Alabama and Auburn place decently in USNews. Tennessee is on par with Nebraska, maybe better. The top half of the SEC is respectable. The bottom half not so much.

          • Psuhockey says:

            Andy,
            By rankings you are correct, but if you think UNC administrators respect any other schools in the SEC besides Florida and Vanderbilt as peers, you are mistaken. US News rankings mean nothing to these people. Kentucky does do a lot of research but gets little respect academically. Look no further than Gee openly mocking them last November.
            Academics is all about perception not real life. Michigan is a top school because and thus will attract the top guys. Just like the Ivy leagues. You are considered smart if you go to Harvard when in fact rich or legacy would be a better description. In a room full of UNC, Duke, Michigan, and Wisconsin grads, Georgia and Texas A&M grads are considered the illererate rednecks. Nobody is getting there postgrad at Alabama after an undergrad at UNC on purpose. Academics is not built on reality but on reputation and reputation matters to administrators. Boosters though and this money carry a lot of weight so that is why UNC could go SEC but the administrators will be holding their noses if they do.

          • duffman says:

            Kentucky is an odd bird.

            Historically is was poor and had no research. The last president was a MIT guy and he shifted the focus and their endowment has grown from just over 100 million to around 1 Billion in short time. They may be the one you look back at 20 years from now and would say they may have come the furthest over time. Time will tell but they have certainly built up their campus and research over the past decade to not be ignored.

            Of course they could fall back but right now I think they are #4 in the SEC for research and could continue to improve their academic status when other schools above them fall. A generation from now kentucky may have the last laugh on Gordon Gee.

            As for the ACC folding I could see UNC heading to the SEC paired with UVA. They seem much more tightly paired in the long view than UNC and Duke and I can not see UNC moving to the B1G without an all out revolt by their alumni and politicians – keep in mind politicians at the state level will be much more in tune with the sidewalk fans because there are lots of them and they vote. I still say if the ACC falls Duke is the most likely to be the ACC school that moves to the B1G. I actually see this as a positive because a second private school in the B1G would soften the landing of other private schools.

          • fredem says:

            Yes, I doubt 6 invites to the ACC will be offered by either the B1G or SEC.  The B1G may do the 4 ACC schools of NC, VA, Duke and GT.  However, once the schools are in play the SEC will only make offers to the schools it wants, probably NC and VA.  All of this will only happen near the expiration of the GoR if the ACC’ expected future payout will be $15M+ per year below the SEC and B1G (likely).     If the SEC and/or B1G creates 2 or more top level defections, it is likely that the next level of schools will accept invites from the XII vs. taking the chance that the payout decreases further and they are stuck in an ACC that is one step above the American.  If NC and VA leave, a few top ACC football schools that were turned down by the SEC and B1G will accept XII invites before being left out in the cold.  Depending on who is left that could be any of FSU, VT, Clemson, Miami, NCSU, GT, or Pitt.  It is unlikely that the XII payout difference will attract ACC schools the XII wants unless the ACC is first weakened by the SEC or B1G.  So the XII stays at 10 unless either the B1G or SEC goes to 16 or more.  There is no way that two of the Go5 schools are going to provide value while the XII has TX and OK.  So CT, Cincinnati, USF, UCF, NI, Memphis, Rice, Buffalo, et. al. are not going to get invites.     As far as the SEC inviting 4+ to make the ACC schools comfortable with the culture; that may be a requirement for the B1G but is not for the SEC.  It is not like the SEC is going to invite Syracuse or Boston College.  The SEC culture is well known and accepted in the states where the SEC would be making invites.            

          • duffman says:

            Florida, Vandy, A&M, and Mizzou have B1G-level academics. Georgia isn’t far off.

            ARWU
            30 North Carolina – B1G / SEC potential school
            35 Vanderbilt
            43 Florida
            53 – 67 Georgia
            53 – 67 Texas A&M
            53 – 67 Virginia – B1G / SEC potential school
            68 – 85 Tennessee
            86 – 108 Louisiana State
            86 – 108 Kentucky
            86 – 108 Missouri

            Perhaps you are a bit too enthusiastic about how high Missouri ranks when compared to Georgia. Missouri got their AAU over 100 years ago when it was easy to get in. Like Nebraska they have not been at the forefront of research and others have now passed them. 50 years ago Missouri may have done more research than a school like Kentucky but now this is no longer the case. Don’t get me wrong, Missouri is still a good school, but letting others pass you means it will be that more expensive when Missouri tries to catch up later on.

          • bamatab says:

            duffman,

            “They seem much more tightly paired in the long view than UNC and Duke and I can not see UNC moving to the B1G without an all out revolt by their alumni and politicians”

            The vast majority of the alumni want in the SEC. I’m pretty sure their emails were part of the ones referenced in the article, t-shirt fans weren’t the only ones emailing Cunningham. The only people at UNC that might prefer the B1G over the SEC would probably be the administration. The alumni, boosters, and t-shirt fans all prefer the SEC over the B1G (by a wide margin).

          • Psuhockey says:

            Duffman,
            I worked at UK and had some affiliation with their medical research department. Lots of brilliant people there and they do a lot of great work. They have a bit of a complex about how they are viewed by others though, knowing they are wrongly looked down upon. If I was running the BIG, UK would be one of my propriety adds. It adds a top 2 basketball program in a new continuous state with good research and would cripple the SECs winter sports appeal.

          • In_Fan says:

            Interesting to see who UNC sees as their peer group academically.

            According to the linked website:

            http://oira.unc.edu/institutional-effectiveness/institutional-performance-measures/peer-comparisons/unc-system-defined-peer-group/

            Its academic peer group contains 6 current or future B1G schools.

          • duffman says:

            It adds a top 2 basketball program in a new continuous state with good research and would cripple the SECs winter sports appeal.

            They already have a solid club level hockey team.

      • Michael Burt says:

        Frank, it’s true that there are a lot of transplants here, and that those numbers will only increase, but North Carolina is still way, way off from having most of its population identify with northeastern/midwestern ideals than with southern ones.

        First, whether children’s parents are from NC or elsewhere, the children themselves grow up where they’re expected to choose UNC, NCSU, or Duke. The ACC gets ingrained for kids early, no matter where they’re from.

        Second, NC’s ACC teams are most often playing SEC teams in football, not B1G teams. SEC teams are much closer and easier to identift with from a geographic standpoint, let alone culturally. The B1G would habe to swell to 18 for it to have any kind of geographic friendliness.

        Related to that last point is that the SEC is appraling not just because of geography or culture, but because the SEC is perceived to be the best league around. The Big Ten has had better football than the ACC (not this year, for once), but it still pales compared to the SEC. Demographics arent going to change people’s minds about that. Also, keep in mind thatva lot of the transplants are not Big Ten alumni. They’re from out west. They’re from some of Massachusetts’ elite private schools and SUNY schools which have no leanings towards any conference. They would not care whether UNC goes to one league or another.

        Also keep in mind that in Maryland, the Big Ten has a ton of graduates in suburban DC and Baltimore. Maryland does’t have much population outside those two cosmopoitan metros, leaving the areas where most of that state’s metros having a much more northern feel. Combine that with the financial advantages of the B1G and Maryoand’s AD debt, and they were just low hanging fruit.

        UNC is in a state that looks very different. NC won’t have any metros.as massive and dense as DC anytime soon. Even Baltimore, which is somewhat comparable in size to Charlotte, is not like any of NC’s cities. It’s right in the corridor from DC to Philly to NYC, with not much space in between. NC’s population of just short of 10 million requires you to add Charlotte and the Triangle, both of which still have a tonbof Southern character that does not disappear just because of transplants, as well as a several other MSA’s like Fayetteville, Wilmington, Asheville, Greensboro, Winston Sakem, High Point, and Gastonia. Those all have low numbers of transplants, and combined with the rural counties, it adds up to a lot of people who would have zero interest in the BigvTen. Adding a few million more people, only some of.whom are from the north, wont change the majority’s preference for a strongbACC or.the SEC over the B1G.

        Forget about the Big Ten getting North Carolina to convert into an east coast/northeast type of state. The only way to get UNC into the Big Ten is by offering many many millions more thanbthe ACC’s next deal AND more than whatever the SEC will get. Will that work, though? Will the Big Ten dwarf the SEC?

      • bamatab says:

        Frank,

        I think it is more than just a purely cultural thing. SEC football in the southern states just has a different excitement (for a lack of a better word) than football outside of the SEC. I live and work in Huntsville, AL which has a lot of Northern transplants due to the defense and aerospace industry in the city. From what I have witnessed, it doesn’t take long for the children of those transplants to become caught up in the SEC appeal. As a matter of a fact, I personally know a few first generation northern transplants that start getting into SEC football within a few years of being here. It’s what most people talk about around the “water cooler” at work during football season, and it starts to rub off on them.

      • opossum says:

        @FTT

        I don’t understand how you can go all around the internet to decry the idea that the “Rust Belt is shrinking so B1G teams will be fanless nonentities in short order making the BTN a failure” and still maintain the idea that enough Rust Belters will decide to move to Virginia and North Carolina in the next 10 years to completely change the culture in those states to the extent that their flagship universities joining a midwestern conference is an appealing proposition to anybody there. I don’t believe either, for the record. Those kind of things take lots more time.

        Also, both schools are in states that have areas that are growing rich fast and others that are poking along. The growth areas (the Triangle and Charlotte in NC and Northern Virginia) are attracting migrants. Migrants who move to other parts of those states are quickly assimilated. Or they move back home.

        UNC and UVA could fill their entire in-state freshman class quota with well qualified graduates of just a few high schools from those growth areas, but they don’t. They go statewide, and the culturally southern are overrepresented among students, alumni and boosters.

        Because of that it would take a few more decades after North Carolina and Virginia become culturally midwestern or northeastern states for UNC and UVA to become midwestern or northeastern colleges.

        I’m not holding my breath for that, because I live in Fairfax County, Va., and Vietnam has a greater cultural presence than Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin combined. I don’t think the SEC has anything to worry about, complete outsiders without prejudice don’t see much distinction between SEC and B1G schools. Tennessee or Ohio State? Who’s offering the better scholarship?

        • swesleyh says:

          @FTT

          I don’t understand how you can go all around the internet to decry the idea that the “Rust Belt is shrinking so B1G teams will be fanless nonentities in short order making the BTN a failure” and still maintain the idea that enough Rust Belters will decide to move to Virginia and North Carolina in the next 10 years to completely change the culture in those states to the extent that their flagship universities joining a midwestern conference is an appealing proposition to anybody there. I don’t believe either, for the record. Those kind of things take lots more time.

          Also, both schools are in states that have areas that are growing rich fast and others that are poking along. The growth areas (the Triangle and Charlotte in NC and Northern Virginia) are attracting migrants. Migrants who move to other parts of those states are quickly assimilated. Or they move back home.

          UNC and UVA could fill their entire in-state freshman class quota with well qualified graduates of just a few high schools from those growth areas, but they don’t. They go statewide, and the culturally southern are overrepresented among students, alumni and boosters.

          Because of that it would take a few more decades after North Carolina and Virginia become culturally midwestern or northeastern states for UNC and UVA to become midwestern or northeastern colleges.

          I’m not holding my breath for that, because I live in Fairfax County, Va., and Vietnam has a greater cultural presence than Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin combined. I don’t think the SEC has anything to worry about, complete outsiders without prejudice don’t see much distinction between SEC and B1G schools. Tennessee or Ohio State? Who’s offering the better scholarship?

          Opossum, don’t forget that this is a Big Ten board and the Big Ten posters have Big Ten tunnel vision. As a southern lad, although not a Virginia person, I agree with you and support your statements. Does not stop me from enjoying this board. To support my tunnel vision statement, I well remember the unamimous statements from this board, including Frank, that said neither A&M nor Missouri would ever be members of the SEC. This is still the best realignment board around anywhere.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Definitely not unanimous unless I, and a few others, don’t count. Just saw too much momentum, combined with what at the time appeared to be the eminent demise of the Big 12.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      UNC’s fans are seeminlgy happy about joining the SEC.

      Bear in mind that, had the fans been polled, I don’t think Maryland’s supporters would have wanted the Big Ten either. I realize that UNC is quite a bit more culturally southern than MD. But if the administration at UNC actually thought that the Big Ten was much better than either the SEC or staying put, they’d move to the Big Ten and do what they needed to sell it to the fans.

      I truly don’t think UNC will ever join the B1G. Virginia may very well do it though.

      Well, once UNC leaves, it’ll be very school for itself. There’s no way UVA turns down a Big Ten invite if UNC+Duke go to the SEC, leaving Virginia behind. The only question is, if the SEC takes just two, whether Duke or UVA is the second school.

      If you take Duke, you’re getting an academic powerhouse and a few extra blockbuster basketball games every year, but you’re duplicating a market and getting zero in football. In fact, it’s praising Duke to say they offer zero in football. They may even subtract value, because every game they play is a ratings and attendance stinker.

      Maybe UNC + Duke to the SEC and UVA + VT for the B1G.

      I don’t see the Big Ten taking more than one Virginia school. In the scenario you’re talking about, they’d take UVA and cast about for a better #16.

      • @Marc Shepherd – Just throwing crap against a wall, what about a swap of that scenario?

        UVA and Duke to the Big Ten.

        VT and UNC to the SEC.

        I think Duke gets quite underrated in a lot of these discussions (and I’ll repeat this again – there’s no team in any sport pro or college that I hate more than Duke). I’ve seen the TV ratings data over the past decade and Duke is the *one* school where it can drive basketball ratings to football-type levels. Plus, they’re obviously impeccable in terms of academics. To me, they’re an easy call – if Duke wants to join the Big Ten (with or without UNC), then they’ll get an invite immediately. The university presidents wouldn’t think twice about that move any more than they’d think about Stanford if they wanted to join.

        • Brian says:

          Frank the Tank,

          “@Marc Shepherd – Just throwing crap against a wall, what about a swap of that scenario?

          UVA and Duke to the Big Ten.

          VT and UNC to the SEC.”

          As I noted below, that was Clay Travis’s opinion the day after UMD was added in the piece the article referenced.

          “I think Duke gets quite underrated in a lot of these discussions (and I’ll repeat this again – there’s no team in any sport pro or college that I hate more than Duke). I’ve seen the TV ratings data over the past decade and Duke is the *one* school where it can drive basketball ratings to football-type levels. Plus, they’re obviously impeccable in terms of academics. To me, they’re an easy call – if Duke wants to join the Big Ten (with or without UNC), then they’ll get an invite immediately. The university presidents wouldn’t think twice about that move any more than they’d think about Stanford if they wanted to join.”

          The big issues with Duke:
          1. Can they get BTN on in NC at the full rate? I doubt it. Most of their best hoops games would go on the CBS deal (or its replacement), so also not a BTN boon.
          2. No FB value at all.
          3. Cultural fit of a small private school in the B10.

          I’m just not sure Duke gets added without UNC.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            UVA and Duke to the Big Ten.

            Yeah, I think the Big Ten would take that deal.

          • psuhockey says:

            Duke has a large fan base in NYC and a heavy alumni presence both from and transplanted to the Northeast. It could help in both Northern New Jersey and NYC as well as Carolina.

        • opossum says:

          @FTT

          I have heard that UNC and Duke have a standing invitation to the SEC, and it wouldn’t surprise me if they had one to the B1G as well. They haven’t taken either invite because they both like playing all sports against NC State, Wake Forest, UVA, Virginia Tech, Clemson and Georgia Tech. I don’t know what would change that. Money wouldn’t.

    • vp19 says:

      For political reasons, Slive may have to take NCSU over Duke if he covets UNC. State can’t be left standing alone, and the Big 12 won’t accept it as a leftover.

      • Are we absolutely sure of this? Just because “little brother” has to be taken care of in some states doesn’t mean that it’s true in all states. Moreover, given the presence of a presumably powerful in its own right private (Duke) I wonder just how much influence NCSt truly has.

        It’s one thing to say “we’ll make life annoying for you if you leave us behind,” and it’s quite another to say “if you leave us behind we will cut your funding” (which is seemingly what happened in Texas during Big 12 formation). Just because “big brother” schools generally haven’t forced the issue doesn’t mean that there’s a veto power at work.

        • Nick In South Bend says:

          I think UNC and NCST share a board of governors, making it very unlikely NCST gets left out in a terrible ACC without UNC and UVA etc…

          I kind of find it difficult to believe that the board would split them up at all actually. They know that UNC is the prize, so they can mandate NCST as a travel partner, and pretty much any conference would take them.

          • Brian says:

            Nick In South Bend,

            “I kind of find it difficult to believe that the board would split them up at all actually. They know that UNC is the prize, so they can mandate NCST as a travel partner, and pretty much any conference would take them.”

            I disagree. The B10 is highly unlikely to take UNC and NCSU. The SEC might, but I think they’d really prefer two separate states.

          • bamatab says:

            If UNC & NCST are as tied to the hips as some are speculating, the it could ultimately come down to a point where their BOGs will have to decide whether or not they are willing to risk the athletic futures of one of the schools or of both schools. In the future when the revenue gaps becomes too big, if the SEC refuses to take UNC & NCST as a package deal, then what stand will the BOGs take? What if the SEC tells the BOGs that even if UNC goes to the B1G, they aren’t looking to take NCST? Whether that would be a bluff or not, would the BOGs risk UNC’s athletic future if they have no guarantee that NCST will get in the SEC? If it ever got to that point, that would be political suicide if you ask me.

  16. BuckeyeBeau says:

    Nice article, Frank.

    These emails are very interesting. Always fun to see some actual thoughts and whatnot from those inside the power structures. From the get-go, you said “think like a President,” and here we get to see some of that thinking. Fascinating that the “thinking” is not quite paying attention to factors like how much $$ the B1G is going to get.

    Gotta love the glacial pace of bureaucracies. The FOIA request was filed in February and now, in October, we see the results.

    Also a bit fun to relieve some history. For me anyway, seems hard to believe it has only been a year. Seems like forever ago that Maryland and Rutgers were announced.

  17. All of this assumes that the ACC is/will continue to be vulnerable, which may or may not be the case. The ACC has far and away the best demographic footprint of any conference, and also the one that is growing the fastest. Also, who knows what rule changes for safety will do to the popularity of football. In 10 to 20 years, basketball may have made enough serious inroads into the football’s ratings (though I extremely doubt that it will over take it) that the ACC’s status as the premier basketball conference may have much more monetary than it will today. In any case, as Frank has said basketball impacts the value of a conference network to a much greater extent than you would think because there are so many more basketball games available than football games. If the ACC network ever gets up and running that could prove a very serious factor as well. None of that even takes into consideration the possibility (however remote) that Texas decides to and can get a Notre Dame type in for all sports, partially in for football deal with the ACC, which would give the conference Texas, Notre Dame, FSU, Miami, Clemson, and Va Tech football and UNC, Duke, Syracuse, and Louisville basketball, as well as a host of other very decent schools in one sport or the other like Georgia Tech and Pitt. I think that the ACC’s value will only continue to grow over time and strengthen the conference.

    • Brian says:

      Jeffrey Juergens,

      “All of this assumes that the ACC is/will continue to be vulnerable, which may or may not be the case.”

      All of what? This post is mostly about the past.

      “The ACC has far and away the best demographic footprint of any conference, and also the one that is growing the fastest.”

      What are you basing that on?

      Using Wikipedia’s population numbers:

      If you use full values for split states, then the ACC has the largest footprint:
      ACC – 76M (inflated by NY and split states)
      B10 – 71M
      P12 – 63M
      SEC – 58M
      B12 – 37M

      However, we all know the ACC doesn’t have all of FL, GA, SC, KY or NY. Just giving them half of FL instead moves the B10 #1. If you give them half of each split state they drop to 57M. It drops to 46M if you split NY.

      Growth rate:
      B12 – 1.26%
      P12 – 1.03%
      SEC – 0.98%
      ACC – 0.89%
      B10 – 0.19%

      TX is almost the fastest growing state right now and it is the second largest. There’s no way the ACC footprint is growing the fastest.

      As far as fan interest, I think we’d agree it goes something like this:
      Tier 1 – SEC, B10 (B10 is higher in hoops, SEC in FB)
      Tier 2 – B12, ACC, P12

      Right now, you can make a good argument for the B10 having the best footprint. For the future, the SEC is well positioned for growth. The ACC is very solid, but not “far and away the best.”

      “Also, who knows what rule changes for safety will do to the popularity of football.”

      Or any of a thousand other unpredictable things. History shows football steadily gaining in popularity, though, with basketball far behind. For all we know lacrosse will be the growth sport to take any losses from FB. There’s no reason to assume it’ll be hoops.

      “In 10 to 20 years, basketball may have made enough serious inroads into the football’s ratings (though I extremely doubt that it will over take it) that the ACC’s status as the premier basketball conference may have much more monetary than it will today.”

      You’re assuming, of course, that the ACC actually is the premier hoops conference in 10-20 years.

      “If the ACC network ever gets up and running that could prove a very serious factor as well.”

      That’s a big if for now. And while hoops adds value, they still need FB to drive subscriptions.

      “None of that even takes into consideration the possibility (however remote) that Texas decides to and can get a Notre Dame type in for all sports, partially in for football deal with the ACC, which would give the conference Texas, Notre Dame, FSU, Miami, Clemson, and Va Tech football and UNC, Duke, Syracuse, and Louisville basketball, as well as a host of other very decent schools in one sport or the other like Georgia Tech and Pitt.”

      Nor does it take into account the remote possibilities of UT and ND ending up anywhere else. Your whole analysis blows up if UT and company join the P16 or if UT joins the B10 or SEC, as just one example.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        It drops to 46M if you split NY.

        The ACC’s mind-share in NY (due to Syracuse) is probably in single-digit percentages. New Yorkers’ sports loyalties are fragmented in so many different ways.

      • spaz says:

        PA is another state where the ACC definitely does not have the whole state — they basically have no presence in the more densely populated eastern half of the state.

    • psuhockey says:

      According to the those emails, the ACC will be down by 20 mil a year to the BIG by 2017. Thats a lot of growing to do in a decade before the GOR is up to catch up the BIG and SEC.

  18. Brian says:

    http://outkickthecoverage.com/the-sec-and-big-ten-will-have-16-members.php

    For those who care, this is the Clay Travis piece referenced in the article.

    Cliff’s Notes:
    SEC and B10 will go to 16. Why? Because of the money available via TV. Why these specific targets? To expand the footprint for their networks. Who will each conference add? SEC – NCSU and VT, B10 – UVA and GT. He assumes UNC and Duke are a pair and that neither conference would take 2 teams in one state. If they would split, he says Duke to the B10 instead of GT and UNC to the SEC instead of NCSU. He is adamant that the SEC won’t double up in any current SEC state.

    • Andy says:

      That’s stupid. Of course the SEC would take UNC and Duke.

      • vp19 says:

        And Slive would take a UNC/NCSU combo if left with no alternative. The SEC will pass on Duke if it means adding UNC (and State has a pretty capable hoops program, too).

      • Let’s think of it this way: if the Big Ten were able to add Berkeley, would that mean that they’d pass on Stanford because they’re in the same market? Heck no! No one is passing on the academics/athletics combo of Stanford even if they have the market already covered by Cal.

        Same thing with Duke, who is actually even more compelling on the athletics front because they are the #1 king in basketball from a national perspective. Duke is an incredibly valuable school in the conference realignment game – both the Big Ten and SEC would take them immediately even if UNC was already coming along. This isn’t a Baylor or Wake Forest-type private school – Duke is an elite academic research and basketball powerhouse. For the Big Ten’s purposes, the academic research capabilities completely dwarf any reservations about Duke being a private school. I don’t think it’s even a close call. We’ve certainly had plenty of wacky conversations here about shoehorning AAU members into the Big Ten that bring a heck of lot less academic and athletic firepower than Duke.

        I’m now going to take a shower after that show of support for the Dookies. Bleh.

        • vp19 says:

          Frank, what you’re saying about Duke is definitely true from a Big Ten perspective…but politics far more figures into a UNC-to-the-SEC move. NCSU and state politics isn’t a factor in a Big Ten expansion equation, but both certainly are where the SEC is concerned. Remember that both UNC and State are joined at the hip with the same ruling body, and would be more difficult to separate than Kansas and K-State or Oklahoma and Okie State. If it came down to UNC/NCSU to the SEC and UVa/Duke to the Big Ten, both conferences would be pleased, although Duke lacks the statewide appeal of its two Triangle brethren.

          • psuhockey says:

            You bring up an interesting point about the shared board. If UNC has to look out for NC State, that could very well push UNC to the BIG. IF the SEC will only take one school from North Carolina, then I could see UNC going to the BIG to give NC State a nice landing spot in the SEC since NC State would never get an invite from the BIG.

            As far as economics, it would make a ton of sense to put NC State in the SEC and UNC in the BIG. The football schedule alone would be a huge economic windfall for the local community. Imagine bring the fans of four or more of these teams, PSU,OSU, UM, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Georgia, Florida, S. Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, LSU, Texas A&M, to the triangle region every year. Why bring 2-3 when you can bring 4-6 giants traveling fan bases every year.

          • Andy says:

            The SEC doesn’t want NCSU. They’d take them to get UNC but probably not otherwise. Also UNC apparently doesn’t want to join the B1G anyway.

        • frug says:

          I think you are overestimating the interest the Big Ten would have in Stanford (especially if they were getting Cal). Stanford is a great school and non-revenue powerhouse but they have spent a good portion of history battling Washington St. for the title of Least Valuable TV Rights in the PAC (just check the revenue distribution numbers). Yes, Stanford is dominant right now but history (both at Stanford and elsewhere) have shown it is nearly impossible for small private schools to stay at the top for long.

          I think ultimately, Stanford would be another Northwestern and the Big Ten already has one of those to subsidize.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Mo money than anyone except Harvard…?

          • Andy says:

            ccrider, exactly right.

          • frug says:

            Unless Stanford was willing to start cutting the conference an annual check to cover the difference I don’t see how the size of Stanford’s endowment is relevant.

          • ccrider55 says:

            They add far more value to the academic side than they might not add to the athletic side. The athletics are still a part of the school, not an independent endeavor.

          • frug says:

            They add far more value to the academic side than they might not add to the athletic side. The athletics are still a part of the school, not an independent endeavor.

            Still don’t see how that would possibly make up for how little they would bring athletically. Conference distributions still dwarf the amount of money made/saved via the CIC.

            And I should add the fact that they have horrible attendance, compared to the current Big Ten schools, in FB and MBB, means the Big Ten would also lose a fortune from gate revenue sharing on top of the TV money. (The Cardinal would have had the second worst FB attendance in the Big Ten and worst MBB by a decent margin).

          • ccrider55 says:

            Ok, you pass on Stanford. They win how many directors cups, have shown a change to be FB friendly, have most coaching positions endowed, Phil Knight got MBA there, almost unlimited resources, tremendous political power, it’s not beholding to transient state politics. What’s to like?

          • frug says:

            They win how many directors cups

            Jim Delany is on record as criticizing the Directors’ Cup for causing schools to concentrate on the “wrong” sports. And the Big Ten has never really emphasized non-revenue sports when it comes to expansion. (Maryland just eliminated 7 and Rutgers has one of the Directors’ Cup ranks of any major conference school)

            have shown a change to be FB friendly

            They have had strong FB runs in the past but they have never lasted. Maybe they have turned the corner but it is more likely they will revert to established level of performance (the MBB team couldn’t sustain the level of performance they had under Montgomery and Johnson when people were calling them Duke West)

            most coaching positions endowed

            Ok.

            Phil Knight got MBA there

            Is he going to pay to the Big Ten they money they would lose on Stanford?

            tremendous political power

            Not sure how that helps the Big Ten

            it’s not beholding to transient state politics

            Nice, but given that the Big Ten has shown a preference for public schools not sure how much that helps Stanford’s case.

            Ok, there’s a lot to like about Stanford… just not enough, especially if the Big Ten were to add Cal like in Frank’s scenario.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “And the Big Ten has never really emphasized non-revenue sports when it comes to expansion. (Maryland just eliminated 7…”

            Perhaps not,. But happily every add has a wrestling team (as do UNC, Duke, UVA, VT) :) )
            Are you suggesting Maryland was chosen because of their reduced offerings? Sounds very UTish. I thought they moved in order to help alleviate that problem, and rumors some will come back in the future.

            Is Delany now dictating how schools ren their AD’s?

            ” “tremendous political power”

            Not sure how that helps the Big Ten”

            So you’re with Andy on Mizzu instead of working the corridor of power with the last add?

            “Big Ten has shown a preference for public schools not sure how much that helps Stanford’s case.”

            Just noting that unlike the Longhorns there aren’t any siblings that could be politically required to be cared for.

          • frug says:

            Are you suggesting Maryland was chosen because of their reduced offerings?

            No, I saying they added them in spite of it… because they don’t really care much about non-revenue sports (at least in the context of expansion)

            Is Delany now dictating how schools ren their AD’s?

            No, but he’s been with the Big Ten for quarter of a century virtually never voices an opinion that the conference members don’t share.

            So you’re with Andy on Mizzu instead of working the corridor of power with the last add?

            I’m not entirely sure what this is a reference to, but I do think that Missouri would be a better addition for the Big Ten than Stanford

            Just noting that unlike the Longhorns there aren’t any siblings that could be politically required to be cared for.

            Big Ten would want another school in California anyways so not that big of an advantage.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “Big Ten would want another school in California anyways so not that big of an advantage.”

            UC Riverside? ;)

          • frug says:

            Riverside isn’t AAU, but they would want a team from the Southern part of the state.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Ok! The Anteaters it is!

          • frug says:

            They’d win the baseball and men’s volleyball titles every year.

          • vp19 says:

            I assume Frank was being hypothetical about Cal and Stanford. A coast-to-coast conference might work with football-only members, but the travel and logistics of doing that for all sports would be prohibitive.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I assume Frank was being hypothetical about Cal and Stanford. A coast-to-coast conference might work with football-only members, but the travel and logistics of doing that for all sports would be prohibitive.

            Yeah, it’s amazing how many people didn’t realize that. He was just trying to name an in-state pair that’s somewhat comparable to UNC and Duke. (Obviously, Stanford is better at football than Duke; no analogy is perfect.)

            All he’s saying is that if the Big Ten were expanding into CA (which it of course is not), it would take those two for the same reasons it would take UNC and Duke.

          • frug says:

            I know he was being hypothetical, but I’m noting that even in hypothetical scenario where the travel and logistics weren’t an issue, I still don’t think the Big Ten would have much interest in Stanford for all the reasons I listed.

          • ccrider55 says:

            And I don’t think there is more than three schools that the COP/C would run faster to welcome. And none as a partner to a number fifteen.

          • Brian says:

            Hypotheticals:

            Which would the B10 choose if they could only take 1:

            1. Cal or Stanford?
            2. USC or UCLA?
            3. USC/Stanford, UCLA/Cal, USC/Cal, UCLA/Stanford, USC/UCLA or Cal/Stanford?

            1. I think they take Cal (larger fan base, state school more similar to other B10 schools) but it’s very close.
            2. USC easily. Very strong academics plus a FB king and dominant in the LA market.
            3. USC/Cal by a nose.

        • opossum says:

          Duke is not going to want to leave Wake Forest behind. Where do you see Wake Forest going?

          • frug says:

            The AAC. Duke may not want to leave Wake behind but if the ACC starts to collapse WF will be relegated.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Duke is not going to want to leave Wake Forest behind. Where do you see Wake Forest going?

            Duke doesn’t have enough negotiating power to force anyone to take Wake Forest. In the scenario where UNC and Duke leave the ACC, all of the remaining schools will band together (i.e., those who don’t leave, whatever the total turns out to be).

            A denuded “ACC” is still a far more valuable property than “The American,” so the remaining schools will continue to call themselves the ACC. They’ll decide how big they want to be, and invite whatever number of AAC schools needed to reach that number.

          • opossum says:

            Duke and Wake could propose to form the core of a “magnolia league” with Tulane, Rice and SMU. That would certainly tempt UNC-CH, Georgia Tech, UVA and Miami to join. Vanderbilt could even leave the SEC for that combination, if the “magnolia league” as a southern counterpart to the ivy league becomes a thing they would not want to be left out of. Get William & Mary and Emory up to division I-A level and it’s almost preferable to the current ACC, definately more preferable for any of those schools than the Big Ten or the SEC.

    • vp19 says:

      Keep in mind the piece is from last November. Many mindsets have changed since then.

      • Wes Haggard says:

        Seems to me the logic still holds sway. But because of the GOR, may not come to fruition until GOR expires or the Big Ten and SEC money becomes too large to ignore.

  19. kylepeter says:

    Just for shits and giggles I would have liked to read the 1 email in support of the BIG

  20. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    The 2016 LSU/Wisconsin game at Lambeau Field is official.

    http://theadvocate.com/home/7295542-125/its-official-lsu-vs-wisconsin

  21. loki_the_bubba says:

    Very surprised that the UNC admin would not be aware of the growing financial discrepancies between conferences. It makes me very worried that our admin also underestimates it. Do they know at Rice that we get tens of millions of dollars less than the big boys, even before a single ticket or t-shirt is sold? Do they realize that we bring in close to a hundred million dollars PER YEAR less than the Texas’s of the world? When they figure it out will they just say, “Damn, we can’t close that gap” and just pull the plug?

    • Wes Haggard says:

      It is really sad to an old SWC fan who remembers Dicky Moegle, King Hill and the glory days. If new realignment comes about, perhaps the Ivy League will come calling. Not just for Rice but maybe ask other possible left outs like Wake, Tulane and George Washington.

    • zeek says:

      Yeah that’s a very good point. It seems like quite a few of the administrators at schools outside of the $100m+ athletic revenue range are not aware of the differences in financial firepower among a lot of these places.

  22. Transic says:

    Knowing what we know now through those emails, I find it even more laughable the idea that the ACC could be strong enough to snatch a school from one of the other P5 conferences. Basically, the ACC was the winner in the ultimate battle to be the one major conference to represent the East Coast, and just barely. They still have to contend with the fact that the SEC/B1G have/will have flagships to their South and North, respectively. If they could do a ND-type deal with Texas, for example, then they would be OK for the long term. Ultimately, the demos would help solidify that conference.

    I also think that if they would have taken West Virginia that Maryland would find a bit too difficult to leave just because of the money they would have generated with WV/UMD games and the Backyard Brawl becoming a conference game. Louisville would have been #16. They could still pick up WVU as part of a partial deal with Texas, then add Cincy to solidify their presence in the Ohio Valley with UL, UC and WVU. That might help make FSU feel even more comfortable in the conference.

  23. Transic says:

    A high-level UT source says the university’s decision-makers are increasingly preoccupied with Texas A&M. The source said there is a palpable sense that Aggies successes since moving to the Southeastern Conference last year have raised the ante for Texas.

    “What they are concerned about is not just a football season or a football team,” the source said. “What they’re concerned about is that we’re going to lose this kind-of war to A&M. They are really paranoid about A&M.

    “And not just in sports, by the way.”

    http://www.dallasnews.com/sports/college-sports/texas-longhorns/20131011-source-ut-officials-really-paranoid-texas-will-lose-war-to-am-on-and-off-field.ece?nclick_check=1

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      fyi, the link is to a subscription required site.

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        http://collegefootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/10/11/report-texas-officials-paranoid-of-texas-ams-success/related/

        Here’s a general article discussing UTAustin/A&M. Inside this article is a link to the Dallas Morning News that bypasses the “subscription required” page.

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          More from the Dallas Morning News:

          “And during a nine-day span last month, Texas A&M announced a record enrollment of 58,809 for the 2013 fall semester (including a record 53,672 on the main campus) and that the university had received a record $740 million in donations and pledges from Sept. 1, 2012, to Aug. 1, 2013.

          “When those numbers came out,” the UT source said, “that kind of sent a shock wave.”

          Normally, Longhorns are loath to acknowledge Aggie prosperity, as evidenced by Texas’ refusal to schedule A&M since the Aggies’ move to the SEC. But these aren’t normal times in Austin, where the football team has lost 18 of its last 40 games and is 12-15 in conference play during that span.

          During an interview last week about the university leadership at Texas, prominent UT donor Red McCombs brought up A&M, citing the $285 million government contract A&M received in March to produce vaccines.

          “You didn’t ask me, but I’ll tell you: What I think was so great for the state was when John Sharp took over the [chancellor] role over at A&M,” McCombs said. “I think John Sharp will take A&M from a really good school to a great school.”

    • bamatab says:

      If the big boosters at Texas like Red McCombs are starting to worry, then that says a lot about the direction of the two schools. If aTm can sustain this momentum over the next 5 to 10 years, I think it could cement the UNC boosters, alumni, and fans fears of allowing NCST to join the SEC instead of them if it ever becomes evident that the ACC can’t compete financially with the SEC and B1G. They want no part of NCST becoming the football school in the state of NC.

      • Psuhockey says:

        It could be argued that Nc State has been the better football program lately. That being said the SEC making all who join a football power is stupid. A program success comes at the expense of another program. South Carolina’s success has coincided with Tennessee’s demise. Texas A&M is taking advantage of Auburn being down. The same goes for other conferences. Kansas State rose when Oklahoma was down and then Nebraska fell when Oklahoma rose. There are only so many top teams. Nc State, Oklahoma State, West Virginia or whoever would join the SEC and become fodder for the big schools. If anything, UNC would have more of a chance of becoming a football power with success in the BIG versus Nc State becoming another Kentucky.

        • bamatab says:

          It’s not about the SEC making NCST into a football power. It’s about creating more interest in the NCST football program because they would be in the SEC. Everyone is focusing on aTm’s facilaties upgrade and influx of donations by their boosters, but the same thing is happening at Mizzou (just to a lesser extent). Mizzou is also expanding and has seen an increase in donations due to moving to the SEC. That is what UNC does not want to see happen at NCST, because UNC won’t get the same response from their boosters since the vast majority of them will be ticked off that UNC turned the SEC down.

    • Wainscott says:

      I wrote it on the last thread and I will say it again: Texas’ creation of the LHN was a greedy move fueled by hubris, and by pushing a&m into a far stronger conference, it runs the risk of a reduction in prominence, prestige, and profit. Especially if it doesn’t rebound and A&M keeps its success going.

      Texas did it to itself, so it has no one else to blame.

      • @Wainscott – I do think Texas underestimated both the desire and ability for A&M to move to the SEC. Heck, I certainly underestimated the ability for quite a long time (although I knew the desire was there). If Texas knew what they know now, I think UT would have scratched the LHN and pushed through the Pac-16 deal with A&M in tow. UT had the leverage in that situation since it was heading to the Pac-16 in a group that protected all of the Texas-based schools except for Baylor – it would have been tough for A&M to scuttle that deal by heading to the SEC alone (as was rumored at the time). Once the LHN was established, though, that ended giving A&M the practical political authority to head out on its own.

        • bullet says:

          If the Pac 16 deal had gone through, A&M would have gone to the SEC at the time and Kansas would have just replaced A&M. That was Scott’s contingency plan A. A&M wasn’t going. Tech would have gone and Baylor would have been left behind.

          • ccrider55 says:

            I am split. What was happening is what bullet said. Frank was proposing what might have happened had UT et al been committed to going, as equals, the united forces in Texas might have impressed upon aTm the “need” to stick together. A mountain/plains division would have alleviated considerable travel concerns.

            But that would have required UT to be looking out for and consulting with others as the best way to protect their own interest. That would have been a surprising, fundamental change.

          • bamatab says:

            Yep, aTm was going to the SEC if Texas was going to the Pac 12. I remember having that discussion on this blog back at the time it was all going down. Gene Stallings, who was on their board of regents at that time, was on national radio at the time saying that if the Big 12 wasn’t viable and Texas was going to the Pac 12, then he was for going to the SEC (it came out latter that he had a majority backing by one vote by the regents and backing by the president to go to the SEC if Texas was headed to the Pac 12). And after looking at the aTm message boards, I knew there was no way they were following Texas to the Pac 12. At the time, I think politically they had to stay in the Big 12 if Texas was staying. But if Texas was taking Tech to the Big 12, then aTm had the political backing to go to the SEC and that is where they were headed. In reality, aTm had already made the decision to go to the SEC regardless, they just needed time to build their case politically to leave a Big 12 that still had Texas (which was made easier by the whole LHN hoopla). That much was obvious from reading their message boards and listening to their president and Stallings. That’s why when the rumors started up the second time a year latter that aTm was headed to the SEC, I was adamant on this blog that aTm was gone, even when the SEC was saying that they were happy where they were and weren’t looking to expand.

      • bullet says:

        You can say it all you want, but its still wrong. A&M, according to their own President, decided to move in 2010 when Colorado and Nebraska did. That was before the LHN was formed. The LHN was just used as a scapegoat to stir up the fanbase and justify what they had already decided to do. Like the LHN, A&M’s move was about branding and distinguishing themselves from other Texas universities, most importantly, distinguishing themselves from Texas universities other than UT.

        And greed had nothing to do with the LHN. Texas wanted to do it when they thought they might have to pay to put it on. That’s why A&M wasn’t interested when Dodds approached Bill Byrne about a “Lone Star” network.

        In a recent Dodds interview in the alumni magazine-Alcalde(http://alcalde.texasexes.org/2013/08/deloss-unplugged/):
        One thing I think is not well understood is the rights situation. Could you explain briefly the premise of the tier system and how that factored in the creation of the Longhorn Network?

        The Longhorn Network started 10 years ago, and we sat a staff meeting and we looked at tier-one TV. We looked at everything that wasn’t covered and we said, “Let’s try to build something that will allow us to televise tennis, golf, track, baseball, soccer, and volleyball.” There’s a lot good stuff there that wasn’t really getting exposure. That’s what we call tier three. Of all the things I’ve been associated with in 32 years in Texas—starting the foundation, building facilities, all those things—the Longhorn Network, 10 years from now, will maybe be the biggest thing we did.

        Why do you say that?

        It’s just going to separate us from everybody else. It probably will help the institution more than it helps Athletics in the end. I watched graduation on it, and it was really, really good. When we get distribution—and it takes time—everybody that said negative things about it will say positive things about it. And I’m not saying the SEC or Big 10 or Pac 12 did the wrong things by doing a conference network, because they’re going to have a beautiful network, and it’s going to be a lot of money. But Florida’s going to sit down there, and they’re going to be one-fourteenth of something. And Ohio State is going to be one-fourteenth of something and USC’s gonna be one-twelfth of something, and we’re going to be 100 percent.

  24. zeek says:

    My feeling/prediction at this moment is that 1) UNC will not move unless it is a part of some kind of “Pac-16″ type of “paradigm shifting” offer. More importantly, 2) I think that the Big Ten or SEC will make a “Big Ten-20″ or “SEC-20″ kind of offer in the next decade and a half.

    I think the game has changed. 1) The ACC is now at 14 (15 including ND) and the Big Ten and SEC are both also at 14. What does this mean? It means there aren’t that many slots in the Big Ten or SEC unless either is willing to blow up the current “common wisdom”…

    Right now, the common mantra is that anything at 16 or beyond starts to look unworkable in terms of maintaining important rivalry games, especially if you start to have to create rotating pods. The common idea also seems to be that conferences will be unwilling to test 18 or 20 given how unwieldy those kinds of setups will look.

    But what if that common wisdom is now wrong? It’s still a fact that UNC won’t be an early mover. They’ll move if the ACC is existentially threatened but not before. Thus, the Big Ten or SEC to 16 scenarios with UNC/Duke (or UNC + another 1) don’t really make much sense. They seem to rely on one of those two conferences going to 16 and then the other getting UNC/Duke as a response. But one of those two conferences going to 16 (for example Big Ten with FSU/UVa or SEC with FSU/Va Tech) isn’t as big of an existential threat to the ACC anymore with it’s current 14 (+ND) school lineup.

    To me, that means that the Big Ten or SEC has to blow up the paradigm and offer a 20-school conference setup if it wants to move UNC. This is exactly the situation that we were in 5 years ago when people were discussing whether Texas would move. Texas only seemed to seriously consider moving when the paradigm was blown up by the Pac-16 offer. It means one of the Big Ten or SEC has to step up to the plate and say “we’ll take UNC + 5″.

    For the Big Ten, that’s likely to look like UNC/Duke/UVa/Ga Tech/FSU + 1 of Va Tech or Miami (or possibly a dark horse like Kansas if the timing works out such that the Big 12′s GOR is nearly up if the expansion offer occurs in the mid-2020s).

    For the SEC, that’s likely to look like UNC/Duke/UVa/Va Tech/FSU + 1 of Ga Tech or NC State (or possibly OU or Kansas if the expansion offer occurs in the mid-2020s).

    (Don’t focus on the mix of schools; that’s not as important to this discussion; I think things will be fluid enough that the Big Ten and SEC will both easily look at taking multiple schools in NC and Va given how fast growing they are and that this kind of offer is contingent on a shock and awe kind of factor similar to how the Pac-16 offer came and went).

    The way these offers will come about is something like this. In the mid-2020s, the Big Ten reapproaches the conference discussion and has in hand something like a $13-17 million per year difference with the ACC. The Big Ten COP/C decides that they want to UVa and another, and they end up deciding to go after FSU because they need a football power to justify expansion to the TV people. In the course of those discussions, they decide to talk to UNC who tells them that they aren’t going anywhere unless the ACC is existentially threatened. They point out to UNC that the money differences are only getting bigger (not smaller) and that UNC will have to move at some point. UNC tells them that they’d have to take a big chunk of the ACC to make that happen.

    There’s other ways that this can obvious come about such as the SEC poking around at Va Tech and UVa when it’s looking at ways to expand its cash flow and network’s reach in the 2020s.

    Getting to the second point: 2) The point of all of this is that I think we’re likely to get to a point in the 2020s where the Big Ten or SEC makes the 6 school offer and attempts to take a big chunk of the ACC in order to grab UNC. This doesn’t mean that UNC will accept; in fact, the most likely outcome is that such an offer crashes and burns like the Pac-16 situation did given just how many moving parts there are to an offer such as this, and just how many constituencies around the country (from network executives to other school ADs/commissioners) do not want this kind of thing to happen and will mobilize against it.

    I would however prepare for a world in which a 20 school conference set of offers is on the table. I think it’s coming up in the next round of realignment.

    • zeek says:

      Here’s one relatively plausible scenario in which both conferences make 6 team offers to UNC:

      Let’s say the Big Ten is poking around at expansion candidates in the mid-2020s. It decides that it needs more football prowess and more population footprint as a result of the shifts of the next 12 years and another look at longer-term demographic challenges. They decide to focus on FSU/UVa in a move to 16, but also talk to UNC to make sure that UNC knows that the differences between the Big Ten and ACC and what the future differences look like (let’s say it’s around $13-17 million per school per year if the ACC doesn’t get a network by that time).

      The SEC realizes that the Big Ten is making a move on the Southeast and also decides that they want to get in on this to make sure that they have access to markets in Virginia and North Carolina. They’ve probably been poking around at Va Tech all of this time for Va Tech’s presence in the D.C. and east Virginia TV markets. They go straight to UNC and start to talk with them. UNC tells them that they have an NC State problem (UNC and NC State seem to be more tied to one another than Texas and Texas Tech in terms of how the boards of the two schools are intertwined and this has been discussed ad nauseam around here) but that they don’t want to blow up the ACC and create a mad scramble unless the ACC is existentially threatened. They also mention to the SEC that they want to be in the same conference as UVa if possible along with NC State and Duke. The SEC realizes this and offers UNC/NC State/Duke/UVa/Va Tech (likely along with FSU although they may offer that spot to OU first).

      The Big Ten realizes this is going on and then counteroffers to take UNC/Duke/UVa/Va Tech/FSU/Ga Tech and tries to get the FSU/Ga Tech/Duke/UVa people to try to sway UNC to the Big Ten based on the academic prestige that a 20 team configuration like that could have while also offering similar money.

      Obviously, this still leaves the NC State problem unsolved in the Big Ten offer, but I’m just giving an example of how both conferences could make 20 team offers and how they would get to them.

      • bamatab says:

        I still have a hard time seeing how an athletic conference can justify going to 20+ teams. At some point it becomes an issue of diminishing returns. If either the SEC or B1G goes to 20+ teams, they will not only be duplicating one market, but they’ll have to duplicate at least two markets. At what point does the per school revenue start to diminish instead of increase?

        • Brian says:

          bamatab,

          The thinking would have to be that you’re basically forming leagues that will have subsets that act like conferences used to.

          • bamatab says:

            Brian,

            But that still doesn’t explain where the additional revenue will be coming from to justify adding duplicate markets into the same league (especially since the schools we are discussing would most likely be part of the same division/league). I don’t see either the B1G or the SEC taking schools if it means that they lose money.

          • Brian says:

            There’s more inventory for the TV deals and the conference network. You can approach a critical mass that forces your payouts to go up. The network may become national if the conference is big enough. If they’re doing this, they may also be adding a round of conference semis. Basically, it would be more like the NFL and less like the current NCAA.

          • bamatab says:

            Brian,

            The conference networks are basically already available on a national basis regardless of how many teams are in the conference. Unless the plan is to create a B1G2 or SECN2 channel, you already have plenty of teams to fill the tv spots.

            ccrider55,

            I still don’t see how losing per school payouts is best for either the conference as a whole or the individual schools.

          • BuckeyeBeau says:

            on the $$ point, I would say this: if the 7 best ACC teams join/merge with the B1G, essentially, all the ACC $$ accrues to the B1G including the Orange Bowl tie-in. And you can now get the BTN on basic at $1 per subscriber in the new states, rather than 10-15 cents per subscriber. In earlier threads, we looked at the cable/sat. households in these states and that is a massive jump in revenue for the BTN.

            FWIW, the 7 lesser ACC schools are: BC, WF, Pitt, NCST, Syr, Clemson and VTech.

            The better teams from the AAC leave and merge and make a pretty decent old-Big-East-level “new ACC.” Let’s say: Cincy, Cent. Flor, S. Florida, UConn and E. Carolina. Not completely awful.

            Again, none of this is happening.

          • bamatab says:

            “Again, none of this is happening.”

            Agreed.

            I am still totally shocked that UNC and UVA willingly tied their hands with a GOR when they seemed to admit that there would eventually be a revenue gap between the ACC and the SEC/B1G. I realize that UNC likes to rule the roost, but why tie yourself down and not keep your option open?

          • Brian says:

            bamatab,

            “The conference networks are basically already available on a national basis regardless of how many teams are in the conference.”

            They’re available, but in low demand. By making them national I mean getting more than $0.10 per household out of the footprint and/or greatly increasing demand outside the footprint.

            “Unless the plan is to create a B1G2 or SECN2 channel, you already have plenty of teams to fill the tv spots.”

            Yes, but more inventory means better choices for the tier 1 deal, and thus increased value. That trickles down to all the TV deals. More teams also mean a lot more games fans care about. The ACC and B10 footprints combined are well over 100M people.

            “I still don’t see how losing per school payouts is best for either the conference as a whole or the individual schools.”

            You have assumed diminishing returns without proving it. Say the B10 takes UVA, UNC, Duke, GT, FSU and Miami. Where is the overlap? Duke is a national hoops brand, and also helps in NJ and NYC. They don’t add NC by themselves, but they help the hoops ratings everywhere (like NE football, in other words). The others are in different states or on opposite ends of a giant state.

          • bamatab says:

            Brian,

            More inventory doesn’t necessarily mean better choices. I would argue that you would actually be reducing the chances of having tier 1 games. By adding the likes of Duke, UVA, GT, and even UNC, you are actually diluting the overall pool of teams that draw real national interest. I doubt folks out in California will be demanding to watch Duke vs Michigan or UVA vs OSU football games. From a true national standpoint, adding FSU and Miami are really and truly the only football teams that would help increase your chances of having nationally demanded games. The only reason adding UVA, Duke, GT, or even UNC is even worth it is to gain the tv markets regional demand for the conference networks. I don’t see them doing anything for national demand.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Nobody’s dieing to see Indiana/Miami or Purdue/FSU.

          • Brian says:

            bamatab,

            “More inventory doesn’t necessarily mean better choices”

            Actually it does, especially in the bad weeks. You have much higher odds of having a decent game if there are more games to choose from. I agree it doesn’t guarantee more elite games.

          • frug says:

            I gotta go with Bama on this one. While more inventory usually means better choices, that doesn’t always hold. 9 game conference schedules reduce the total inventory of games compared to an 8 game schedule, but TV network generally pay more for 9 game conference schedules since it improves the total quality of the TV package.

            And it holds for expansion also. Wake Forrest and Vanderbilt (for example) would increase the total inventory of Big Ten games but reduce the total quality of the package since it reduce the number times the Big Boys play each other (every game tOSU would play WF would be game they wouldn’t be playing against Wisconsin, Nebraska, etc.)

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “I gotta go with Bama on this one. While more inventory usually means better choices, that doesn’t always hold.”

            No, of course it doesn’t always hold. Adding UMass and WKU wouldn’t improve inventory. But that’s not what we’re looking at.

            “9 game conference schedules reduce the total inventory of games compared to an 8 game schedule, but TV network generally pay more for 9 game conference schedules since it improves the total quality of the TV package.”

            It’s also because it increases their choices during most of the year. Most OOC games come in September. The conference schedule fills up October and November. Going from 48 to 54 conference games (12 teams, 14 is 56 to 63) gives TV a lot more choices.

            Look at this year with the double bye week. The B10 has roughly 48 games to fill 10 weeks of TV, or 4.8 games per week. Going to 14 would bump that to 5.6 games per week, or 1 extra choice every week for the tier 1 package. It won’t raise the ceiling for that game, but it does raise the floor.

            Rough order of value (12 = 1 vs 2 in that division):
            6 teams – 12, 13, 14, 23, 15, 24, 16, 25, 34, 26, 35, 36, 45, 46, 56
            7 teams – 12, 13, 14, 23, 15, 24, 16, 25, 34, 17, 26, 35, 27, 36, 45, 37, 46, 47, 56, 57, 67

            Crossovers – 11, 12, 13, 22, 23, 14, 33, 15, 24, 16, 25, 34, 44, 17, 26, 35, 27, 36, 45, 37, 46, 55, 47, 56, 57, 66, 67, 77

            But remember, everyone is a touch more valuable now since they should have fewer losses on average than they did before. If you added #7, everyone else benefits from getting to beat them and thus appearing to be better than they were before.

            “Wake Forrest and Vanderbilt (for example) would increase the total inventory of Big Ten games but reduce the total quality of the package since it reduce the number times the Big Boys play each other (every game tOSU would play WF would be game they wouldn’t be playing against Wisconsin, Nebraska, etc.)”

            Would it? It’s also games they aren’t playing IN or PU, plus it means more wins for all the teams above WF and VU so they have better records.

        • ccrider55 says:

          At 20 you are two conferences that have joined in a joint marketing and administration venture. As long as the schools buy into “what’s good for the conference is in the individual school’s interest” it would work. The B1G and PAC haven’t had much problem sharing interest in the Rose Bowl for many decades. It might be like expanding that kind of association (like the B1G/PAC scheduling agreement that almost happened without an actual consolidation).

      • vp19 says:

        Could the Big Ten realistically go to 20 by taking from both the ACC and Big 12? Imagine a dozen years from now, at or near the end of the ACC and Big 12′s GORs, that the B1G pursues UVa, UNC, Duke and GaTech from the ACC and Texas and Kansas from the Big 12. That would create an academic/athletic superconference while adding a football king in Texas and basketball kings in UNC and Kansas (and possibly Duke if it can continue to thrive post-K; there’s no guarantee it will). Chapel Hill would have enough southern neighbors on hand for its fans to be satisfied. The SEC would take the strongest of what’s left not covered by its “gentlemen’s agreement” (Virginia Tech, N.C. State, Oklahoma and Okie State), while the ACC and Big 12 leftovers would merge into a conference that would be a clear #5 on the conference totem pole.

        • fredem says:

          In the event that Texas left the XII without Oklahoma, the SEC would invite Oklahoma, but not OkSt.  After Texas leaves, everyone in Oklahoma will know the XII is a sinking ship, so the political problem will be solved except if the PAC will take both, and the PAC already rejected them.  SEC could  pair OK with VT, NCSU, or FSU.  What is left of the ACC and XII will form the 4th best conference since one will be eliminated.  The American or MWC will be 5th best.      

          • vp19 says:

            Your scenario would lead to a 16-member Big Ten and SEC, the Pac remaining at 12 because of geographic isolation, and a 20-team ACC/Big 12 hybrid. Assuming Virginia Tech is SEC #16, you could divvy them up into two 10-team divisions for football:

            Coastal Division: Boston College, Syracuse, Virginia, Duke, N.C. State, North Carolina, Wake Forest, Clemson, Georgia Tech,, Miami
            Continental Division:West Virginia, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Baylor, Texas Christian, Florida State

          • vp19 says:

            The divisions would be strictly separated, with teams playing a 9-game conference schedule (no crossover games). FSU vs. Miami or SU vs. Pitt could be scheduled as non-conference games.

            As for Notre Dame, it could keep playing five designated games against this league, rotating foes over a four-year cycle (eight years by sites). Opponents would be set up on a 3/2 basis, so ND wouldn’t find itself facing five former Big 12 members in a single season.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            After Texas leaves, everyone in Oklahoma will know the XII is a sinking ship, so the political problem will be solved except if the PAC will take both, and the PAC already rejected them.

            The PAC would take them. When the PAC rejected the OK/OKSt pair, they had better things in mind. A decade from now, they’re going to see that expansion options are limited, and they’ll be worried about being stuck at 12 with nowhere to go.

            Therefore, in the scenario you’ve envisioned (with Texas gone, and their peers at 16 or more), they’d take OK/OKSt as the best deal they’re ever going to get.

            The divisions would be strictly separated, with teams playing a 9-game conference schedule (no crossover games). FSU vs. Miami or SU vs. Pitt could be scheduled as non-conference games.

            No league is ever, ever, ever, ever, going to organize such that one of its most valuable games (FSU/Miami) is forced OOC. It would be like the SEC scheduling Alabama/Auburn as a non-conference game. It is hard to imagine a dumber move that a league could make.

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      @ Zeek:

      a few thoughts.

      adding a block of southern schools helps UNC, et. al., get over the cultural fit problem. particularly, since the new group of five or six are “reunited” with their old ACC buddy Maryland.

      despite the fascination with rotating mini-divisions, if the B1G goes to 20, IMO, the B1G should just admit that it is more a merger-type situation and simply split the teams east and west, do a round-robin in division (with one protected cross-over (The Game)) with the champs ending up in the CCG. Winner of the CCG goes to the Rose Bowl; loser off to the Orange Bowl.

      East tOSU, Rutgers and PSU and ACC7 (MD, UNC, Duke, UVa, FSU, GT & Miami).

      West is current B1GW plus MI, MSU and Indiana.

      yes, howls of outrage from the traditionalists.

      btw, why stop at 20? 24 works just as well. Add UT + 3 and MI/MSU can be shifted to the East. Add UT, OKLA to the West and Pitt and VirTech/Clemson to the East? (the AAU requirement and the one-team-per-state rule will need to be relaxed).

      the BTN is a big factor here particularly if the ACCN never gets done. I honestly think the BTN will out distance the SECN.

      the CIC is a big factor here too.

      IMO, none of this is happening.

      • Brian says:

        BuckeyeBeau,

        “adding a block of southern schools helps UNC, et. al., get over the cultural fit problem. particularly, since the new group of five or six are “reunited” with their old ACC buddy Maryland.

        despite the fascination with rotating mini-divisions, if the B1G goes to 20, IMO, the B1G should just admit that it is more a merger-type situation and simply split the teams east and west, do a round-robin in division (with one protected cross-over (The Game)) with the champs ending up in the CCG. Winner of the CCG goes to the Rose Bowl; loser off to the Orange Bowl.”

        Under the current rules, I agree divisions might be A better choice. Your split is terrible, though.

        “East tOSU, Rutgers and PSU and ACC7 (MD, UNC, Duke, UVa, FSU, GT & Miami).

        West is current B1GW plus MI, MSU and Indiana.”

        Why should OSU get kicked out of the B10 and forced to join the ACC? They aren’t going to agree to a plan that isolates them from the rest of the B10.

    • Wes Haggard says:

      Good argument for both conferences to expand. Historically, SEC does not expand with a school already in their footprint, certainly not in the same state. FSU for example and history could be the teacher here. The exception could be for new territory. Say three North Carolina schools and two Virginia schools and a surprise. Maybe Pitt and a whirl at the huge Pennsylvania TV market.

      • bamatab says:

        Actually, historically the SEC never had an issue with having multiple schools from the same state in the conference. That stance apparently has only occurred recently, and has primarily been a result of the ability to increase per school revenue due to the addition of new tv markets for the upcoming SECN (a secondary reason may also be a result of how crazy recruiting has become). But even as recently as the early 90s, the SEC was more than willing to take a school like FSU that shared a footprint with an existing school.

        • zeek says:

          Yeah, and I think it largely comes down to the fact that those are big enough states to support multiple schools.

          This is not like having 2 schools in Mississippi.

          There’s more than enough population for 2 schools in Virginia and North Carolina given their demographics.

    • Brian says:

      zeek,

      16 is fun to play with for the symmetric pods, but larger may be better in some ways.

      18:
      2 divisions of 9
      Schedule = 8 division games + 1 crossover game (maybe 2)

      20:
      2 divisions of 10
      Schedule = 9 division games + 1 crossover game? or 8 division games (no full round robin)

      Also, potentially look for 13 games in 2019 and 2024-5. Those are double bye years so the schools may push to add a 13th game.

      • Andy says:

        2 divisions of 9 means it’s not really even a conference anymore. More like a partnership between two conferences.

        • ccrider55 says:

          So?
          Wouldn’t that be something anti expansion advocates would embrace? And it brings more revenue.

          • Brian says:

            ccrider55,

            “So?
            Wouldn’t that be something anti expansion advocates would embrace? And it brings more revenue.”

            I wouldn’t say embrace, but it could be better than the status quo. It depends who you add, how you split the teams and how often you play everyone.

      • zeek says:

        Yeah that’s something I was considering. It also solves some of those issues like old Big Ten versus new Big Ten if you can get most of the old schools together. The tradition minded folks will like that kind of outcome.

    • Andy says:

      zeek, I really don’t see how you can interpret a Big 20 out of that article. I just don’t see it. I also don’t see what the incentive would be. Splitting the pot 20 different ways would likely be a lossy endeavor.

      • zeek says:

        Not really seeing anything in the article to indicate that the decision makers at UNC were leaning any which way other than keeping the ACC intact.

        The incentives for the Big Ten and SEC to consider 20 team configurations are the same as the Pac-10′s for considering 16 team configurations; namely, that the extra 6 teams are revenue additive on the whole. Everyone would likely believe in particular that the cable network money is there.

        Maybe that changes in 15 years, but I doubt it.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I really don’t see how you can interpret a Big 20 out of that article. I just don’t see it. I also don’t see what the incentive would be. Splitting the pot 20 different ways would likely be a lossy endeavor.

        You can split it as many ways as you want, as long as each addition is positive. They remain ahead, as long as any new market they enter is worth more than the average value of the markets they’re already in.

        They’d certainly get net wins out of Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, assuming the other drawbacks of expansion could be surmounted (and I’m not saying they necessarily could).

  25. Andy says:

    Go Mizzou – beat the Dawgs

    • Mack says:

      Mizzou won and will go up in the polls. Next up Florida. If Mizzou wins next week they will have a chance at the SEC East.

      • Andy says:

        6th straight Mizzou win by 15 pts or more, this time vs a top 10 team on the road in front of 93,000 hostile fans.

        Time for duffman to eat some crow.

        • ccrider55 says:

          Everyone loves a gracious winner…

        • bamatab says:

          Andy,

          It’ll be interesting to see how hurt Franklin really is. You guys are going to really need him for your next 3 games which includes both USCe & UF. I hope you guys can pull it out. I think it would be good for the conference as a whole to see Mizzou in the SECCG.

          • Andy says:

            I’m hearing he’ll be out 2-3 weeks unfortunately. His backup, Matty Mauk, is a redshirt freshman, but he was a 1st team Parade All American, he’s supposed to be pretty good. We’ll see.

          • Ross says:

            ESPN saying 6 weeks.

          • Brian says:

            ESPN now says he’s done for the regular season.

          • Andy says:

            Totally unconfirmed at this point. Missouri officials are denying it. Sounds like it could be anywhere from two weeks to the season, he’ll have more tests tomorrow.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Missouri officials don’t have authority to reveale students med conditions without permission.

          • Andy says:

            Only one guy is reporting Franklin as out for the season, an ESPN guy. Several other local reporters are disputing it. We’ll find out more tomorrow or Monday.

          • Andy says:

            Coach Pinkel now denying the reports that Franklin is out for the season, but says Franklin will likely be out for “a few games”, maybe longer.

            Matty Mauk, the backup, holds the national high school record for passing yards and was the Gatorade Player of the Year in Ohio a couple of years ago. He’s probably a better passer than Franklin, but he’s inexperienced.

        • duffman says:

          Andy,

          Nice win, but the season is still only half way there. If Franklin is out and the rest of the team piles on injuries the win today was easily a loss. As depleted as Georgia is with lost linemen, 3 elite receivers, and 2 draft picks they still played a very solid game. The Tigers were fortunate not to turn the ball over once while the Bulldogs did so 4 times. Again the win was good for Missouri but they only had 375 yards and were totally shut down in the 3rd quarter. The Georgia team had 454 yards and were still scoring in the 4th quarter with a very limited roster.

          I know you are all gung ho for your team and nothing wrong with that, but the season is not over until the last down is played.

          • Andy says:

            you are such a douche. All I said was that I thought they’d win 8 games. That still looks very likely.

          • Andy says:

            duffman tells me no way Missouri can hang in the SEC, no way they win 8 games, then Mizzou beats the #7 ranked team on the road and duff dismisses it. Shows a real lack of character by him if you ask me.

          • duffman says:

            Andy,

            I congratulated you on a good win. I just noted you used the injuries last year to explain Missouri. If your assessment was correct last year then the same would apply to Georgia this year. That is being a realist and not a douche just because you think things only work for your Tigers and nobody else. Hanging in the middle of the SEC is not the same as beating the top teams like Bamatab’s Tide and Alan’s Tigers. I think both of those schools are well above your Tigers. I think a Georgia team with no injuries is better than your team, as are the TAMU, Florida, and South Carolina teams. If you beat all 3 of these teams then I will agree your Tigers but they have to show me first.

            Auburn was terrible last year but they are currently 5-1 and have already played 3 SEC schools. I might put them ahead of Missouri right now just because they have played a better slate of games. What you mistake as me being a douche is me looking at Missouri and not seeing them in the Top 7 teams in the SEC at the end of the season. You may be right and I may be right but I do not call you names while the jury is still out on your Tigers. Alan can attest my feeling that his Tigers may be the better SEC team that nobody is talking about. They are currently 6-1 and have already played 4 conference games and a ranked non conference team on the road. They are 3 points away from an undefeated season with that loss coming on the road to a team you beat but when that team was not as injured.

            Try to not be so consumed by Tiger Punch that you forget the diversity of this board.

          • Andy says:

            duffdouche, all I said was that Mizzou would likely win 8 or more games this year. You loudly disagreed. Mizzou is now 6-0 with 6 games left. 8 wins seems all but assured.

            Yes, Georgia had injuries. But Missouri lost their QB in the third quarter and rallied to outscore Georgia 13-0 in the 4th to win the game.

            Florida’s starting QB is out too. I suppose that means that win won’t count either.

            Mizzou will win at least 8 games. Your dismissiveness is and has been unwarranted.

          • Raisuli says:

            As a sometimes lurker on the blog this season, watching “duffman” move the goalposts week after week re:Mizzou has been pretty amusing. I don’t think Andy is saying Missouri is the best team in the country, duffman, so why the comment about the season not being over until the last down? What are we waiting to see and conclude upon the last down of the season? Will what we see at that time change what has happened up until now? Will losing several of the next six games mean that Missouri didn’t play some pretty good football in these games so far?

            I can only assume that after watching his team get one of the program’s best road wins in decades, especially given what transpired last season, Andy was sure that you would finally admit that the Tigers have been pretty good this season. Instead you basically came back once again with a variation of ‘just wait, you’ll see.’…as you said last week, or the week prior, etc.

            “Nice win, but the season is still only half way there.”

            ..half way to where, duffman?

          • bullet says:

            UGA couldn’t overcome Murray having his worst game of the year. 4 turnovers vs. 0. The injuries could have been overcome. But they needed Murray to have a good game.

          • Andy says:

            That was Missouri’s defense. Mizzou has 13 interceptions on the year, which is tied for 1st in the nation.

          • bullet says:

            I’m sure they contributed, but Missouri hasn’t played anyone as good as Georgia. Murray only had 3 interceptions prior to today against Clemson, UNT, LSU, South Carolina and Tennessee. But had 2 interceptions and a fumble leading directly to two TDs yesterday.

          • Andy says:

            Mizzou makes turnovers the focus of their defense. They’ve ranked in the top 10 in the country in turnover margin most years for the past 7 or 8 years now.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Mizzou makes turnovers the focus of their defense. They’ve ranked in the top 10 in the country in turnover margin most years for the past 7 or 8 years now.

            If you find me a coach who’ll say that’s not the focus, it’ll be the first. It’s right up there with “playing physical” that every coach from Pop Warner to the NFL says they intend to do. Whether the Missouri coaches actually have a teachable skill the rest of the country lacks is an interesting question.

          • bullet says:

            Franklin certainly has had some bad breaks. Maybe the bad karma in Athens was contagious (top 2 running backs out-1 for the season, top 3 receivers + 1 reserve gone for the season, 2 starting safeties have been out and even the punter got a concussion and missed Mizzou).

          • duffman says:

            half way to where, duffman?

            Missouri first half only 2 conference games played
            Murray State (FCS) 4-3, 2-1
            Toledo (MAC) 3-3, 2-1
            OPEN
            @ Indiana (B1G) 3-3, 1-1
            Arkansas State (Sun Belt) 3-3, 1-0
            @ Vanderbilt 3-3, 0-3
            @ Georgia 4-2, 3-1

            Missouri second half half 6 conference games remain
            Florida 4-2, 3-1
            South Carolina 5-1, 3-1
            Tennessee 3-3, 0-2
            @ Kentucky 1-5, 0-3
            OPEN
            @ Mississippi 3-3, 1-3
            Texas A&M 5-1, 2-1

            If you can not see the difference between the first 6 games and the final 6 games then I do not know what to say? 1st half with easy schedule and full roster vs 2nd half with hard schedule and depleted roster. Drinking the Tiger Punch I could say the second 6 = the first six but my choice would not be that rosy view. Tigers can easily drop the next 2 and I view the game with Tennessee as a toss up right now. Texas A&M is real and Mississippi has already played the toughest part of their schedule. The Fighting Ackbar’s have a much easier second half of the season to recover in.

            Will losing several of the next six games mean that Missouri didn’t play some pretty good football in these games so far?

            No, not taking anything away from the first 6. Just saying the next 6 are much more uphill than downhill. Not sure why this seems to be such an issue.

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      congrats to Mizzou (and Andy).

  26. Mark says:

    Which pair would be better for the B1G’s 15th and 16h teams? North Carolina and Virginia or Texas and Kansas.

    • vp19 says:

      Probably Texas/Kansas, as each are a king of sorts. UVa and UNC have some synergy with each other and Maryland, and are part of growing states, but a UT/KU combo would have more impact.

    • frug says:

      Before the Maryland and Rutgers additions it would have been UT and KU by huge margin, now I still think those two would be best but it would close.

    • Brian says:

      Mark,

      “Which pair would be better for the B1G’s 15th and 16h teams? North Carolina and Virginia or Texas and Kansas.”

      First look:
      UT and KU because TX adds so much value to the BTN

      Deeper look:
      UT would not be in a contiguous state and a cultural outlier as well. They’d have to deal with the LHN issue. KS isn’t useful as a state to the B10. On the other hand, UNC and UVA add 2 large and rapidly growing states that would build on the UMD addition.

      Depending on how the LHN issue is resolved, UT still adds so much value that you have to take them.

    • Richard says:

      Those pairs aren’t coming like that.

      To get Texas or UNC, you probably have to add 3 other schools that they like. UNC has too many rivalries that they don’t want to break (NCSU, Duke, & UVa) & share a board with NCSU. Texas likes TX.

  27. Transic says:

    Column by Tom Lindley: Game attendance drops as college football fans shun a bad deal

    http://www.cnhinews.com/cnhins_sports/x134974944/Game-attendance-drops-as-college-football-fans-shun-a-bad-deal

    • Mark says:

      Thanks for the link. The ideal college stadium of the future will probably look like an NFL stadium with less than 70k seats but all seats will be real seats, not benches and lots of luxury boxes and seating. Wonder if places like ND and Mich will put in more actual seats to reduce capacity. It takes a special person to pay close to $100 to sit on a crowded bench for 3.5 hours. I’d really enjoy the experience more with fewer folks at the games.

      • duffman says:

        It is bigger and any farmer can tell you holding back some seed for next years crops is preferred to harvesting all the seeds and hoping things will grow in the barren dirt. The issue has been out there for quite some time, just the folks in the decision making positions are in touch with what it now costs the fans to actually go.

        http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=091005yankeestickets

        Here is a link I put up on here early in this blog and I think it resonates even more today

        • bullet says:

          They’ve got a balance. They want to maximimize stadium revenue like the pros, but they want to keep alumni connected by bringing a lot back to campus.

          • duffman says:

            Coke and Pepsi want to hook you when you are a kid and make you a lifelong consumer. The big drops in the students going to games may be the canary in the coal mine for large empty stadiums in 10 or 20 years. Baby boomers will begin to die off and those seats will become empty. If they have not engaged kids and students to fill them will this picture become the future of live sports?

            http://usatthebiglead.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/tcu-stadium-empty.jpg

            This was halftime and not 1/2 hour before or after the game

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            duff – in defense of the TCU picture you posted, TCU does allow you to leave the stadium at halftime and return for the third quarter. The tailgating area is very close to the stadium. I attended two games in the new Amon Carter Stadium last season and plan to go to the Texas game in two weeks. At halftime, I’ll probably go to my friend’s tailgate and drink a beer.

  28. vp19 says:

    Maryland, without its first-string QB, clawed past Virginia 27-26. The Terps are now 5-1 with a trip to Wake Forest coming up, and while they won’t go any higher than a minor bowl, they regained some self-confidence after the disaster in Tallahassee.

    • gfunk says:

      Sure you were without your starting QB, but Va is pretty GD awful. Ball State! And for the love of God, did Oregon truly destroy them. Unlike your game against FSU, which I believed hinged on the brutal loss of your QB, they got smoked and toyed with at home.

      The ACC is top heavy this year, but at least its 3 teams (Clem, Miami and FSU), which is better than past years. I am not overlooking Miami, they could win the ACC, they have a lot speed and power & their game against FSU is a rivalry game, the type where all bets are off But, FSU seems destined & it would not shock me if they run away with the ACC.

      BC definitely proved to be competitive against Clemson and FSU. Md has plenty of tough games left. Syracuse is better than advertised as well.

  29. Anthony London says:

    Andy,

    Congrats to your Mizzou Tigers!!!! Big and costly win today.

    Has anyone read the League of Denial yet? I just finished it, looking to hear some of your thoughts…
    It is a good read.

    AL

  30. ccrider55 says:

    Mariota played in the fourth quarter for the first time this year.

  31. Pablo says:

    Interesting read on the perspective at UNC. Maryland bolting to the B1G forced acceptance that the BTN is a game changer in terms of potential revenue growth. The ACC needs to start its own successful network in order to keep up with the revenue potential of its neighbors. The GOR does not make sense for a UVA or FSU unless they believe that there is a realistic chance of an ACCN.

  32. Transic says:

    Utah proving, once again, why they earned a spot in the P5.

    Also, nice game between Mich and PSU, although both teams benefitted from mistakes.

  33. gfunk says:

    Nothing revealing in this current blog, nothing at all. Piecing together this research is about a year late. Some of us were genuinely remarking, months ago, various threads, that UNC to the BIG was far fetched and we were often citing the overwhelming sentiments of various UNC boards where fans were frankly disgusted with a possible BIG move & it was constant, consistent & often barbaric.

    Nearly every UNC to the BIG thread I ever read was loaded and often locked with content filled with venomous criticisms against a possible BIG move. The often countered polite BIG fans with insults, jokes and claims of the BIG being nothing a has been symbol of the “the dreary, apocalyptic, decaying Rust Belt” where “slow football & boring basketball” is played. If you’ve had any credible time as a resident in NC then you shouldn’t be surprised. Their general dislike, sports wise, of the BIG is common – for these fans its continuous king status in the ACC is priority one, next is basketball & kicking Duke’s ass, partly because they are the school with out of state elites – then good ole NASCAR. If UNC is to make a move, then the vast majority of these fans want to try their luck & egos in the SEC – somehow their delusional “sleeping giant” status will awaken in the SEC, as if Tar Hell football is the Kraken of CF. There is simply no brief or extended period of dominate UNC football in the history books. These fans definitely bombed the emails of UNC administrators – declaring NO BIG. Yet, some of you persisted with your fantasies, disguised in academic and economic in-speak, sometimes confidently stating it was only a matter of time before UVa, UNC, & perhaps GT would join the BIG. Absurd! Culture matters so much more than we think in expansion & not primarily at the so-called academic administration level. I think Delany, a Tar Heel alum, knew this long ago. My belief is that he targeted GT and UVa, and maybe, just maybe FSU. But GT and ND have an unspoken, understated alliance that challenged Delany. GT’s new AD has a strong ND pedigree & it’s been obvious for many years now that ND, athletic side & most alum, are not interested in the BIG. They’ll do most anything to benefit recruiting down South & they’re attitude is that they are above their Midwestern roots – which is a crock of shvt.

    The prospect of the ACC folding is quite slim. I remain confident that the only major conference at risk of dissolution is the Big12, which should have been obvious with the last major exodus – Mizzou, aTm, Neb and Colorado. Their failure to capture Lville and Cincy as partners with WVa was simply a further sign of their weakness, a head scratching-dumb move. I do think the Big12′s days are numbered & GD the BIG should try very hard to stretch into Tx & build the BIG West, though I think Wisky and Neb will hold their own against OSU, PSU, Mich, etc.

    Moreover, the bright side of a viable ACC means the SEC will at times lose their dominating grip of the Southeast in football: FSU and Miami, especially, can’t be down for too long & this season is marking their comeback. CF needs a competitive ACC. There’s plenty of room down there for two major conferences, esp one with a decent northern influence (ACC) – it’s a nice cheque and balance.

    • bamatab says:

      First off, you are right in that it was quite obvious that the alumni, boosters, and fans wanted no part of the B1G to anyone that went over to their boards. I remember when the very first rumors of FSU possibly jumping to the Big 12 started, I went over to their boards and was somewhat surprised. I had a very strong feeling at that moment that UNC was not joining the B1G, and the anti-B1G sentiment on their boards only got worse as time went on.

      Now I will have to take exception to your statement that the SEC loses their grip on Southeastern football. Even during the heydays of FSU and Miami in the 80s – early 2000s, Southeast was still tied more to the SEC than the ACC or Big East (which Miami was apart of for some of that time).

      Also if the ACC is to remain a viable conference for the long term that can keep up financially with the SEC and B1G, then they better find some new revenue streams quick. Maybe they can get an ACCN started, but there hasn’t been a whole lot of talk about it since the ACC schools signed the GORs. If the ACCN doesn’t come to fruition, then the ACC may be in more trouble for the long term than some think.

      • vp19 says:

        If ACC members find Swofford has sold them a bill of goods with the ACC Network, the situation changes drastically — especially if they discover their Big Ten and SEC brethren are making twice as much money, or more.

        • duffman says:

          The widening gaps will be at issue for both the ACC and B12. If the stable 3 (B1G + PAC + SEC) put real distance between the other 2 the better schools will jump or disband both conferences (ACC and B12) to reform as a single strong one.

      • gfunk says:

        bamatab,

        What I say probably seems like wishful thinking since the SEC has truly dominated the BCS era.

        But, I believe the ACC has upside due to their kings, though it will be hard for them. They have annual rivalry games to exploit such opportunities: GT-UGa, UF-Miami-FSU, Clem – USC, as well as shared culture, esp access to prep football. I think the latter 3 matchups can go either way on an annual basis. GT-UGa heavily favors the Bulldogs. But honestly, I usually root for the SEC in matchups against the ACC, so I don’t mind the difference.

        The GD ACC has spoiled a lot of BIG runs for a NC in Men’s Basketball – 5 NCG’s – since 1992. Ouch!. But, all in good fun & fair play : ).

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I remain confident that the only major conference at risk of dissolution is the Big12, which should have been obvious with the last major exodus – Mizzou, aTm, Neb and Colorado. Their failure to capture Lville and Cincy as partners with WVa was simply a further sign of their weakness, a head scratching-dumb move.

      It wasn’t “dumb” or “head scratching”; it was the only thing they could do. They were NOT going to get a better TV deal if they added Louisville and Cincinnati. They would’ve had to split their existing deal two more ways. No one expands to lose money.

      I agree that UNC fans don’t want to move to the Big Ten. Having said that, I think you place too much reliance on fan message boards, as if they were indicative of what the administration would do.

      • gfunk says:

        I don’t think so. The active letter campaigns by alum & simple t-shirt fans that Frank cited above were all over the UNC boards long ago. These campaigns were pretty detailed with logistics – contact info.

        Bottom line, I’d hate to see any conference add a member where hostility and disappointment characterize their overwhelming feelings of a new conference home. That’s not right. I’d be pissed to see my alma mater, Minnesota, ever leave the BIG, no acceptable alternatives. This state would never let it happen, never.

        As for FSU, I just don’t think they would have ever subjected themselves to “island status” in the BIG. Money doesn’t supersede culture in such a case.

        • vp19 says:

          Educating the fan base about the benefits of the new league plays a part in it. By the end of 2012, after learning about the CIC and how the move would help Maryland football — both at the gate and in recruiting — many in the College Park community became convinced the move from the ACC to the Big Ten was a wise one. Then again, Maryland has no in-state rivals to speak of; around the Research Triangle, UNC, State and Duke people are in virtually constant contact with each other, and the same holds true around the state, principally for UNC and NCSU (and for Wake and Duke to a lesser extent).I can’t think of any other state where “U. of” and “State U.” are both BCS members and in such geographic proximity.

    • bob sykes says:

      I’m not sure B1G fans (as opposed to the Conference leadership) want southern schools, either. Maryland might be the extreme limit. Ditto most Big 12 schools. Iowa State, Kansas and Missouri (SEC) might be a good cultural fit, but I don’t get Oklahoma, and why in the name of all that’s Holy would the B1G want Texas? They’ve destroyed every conference they’ve been in.

      Similarly, B1G fans might not want Notre Dame. It might have been possible 10 to 20 years ago,but there is too much bad blood now. And ND seems to be ditching its long term B1G series. Purdue will go next. They’ll just keep MSU. Part of this is due to their five-game commitment to the ACC, part to bad blood. John Cooper’s comment, “just don’t play them”, is coming true.

      It is probable the we will not see any further realignment for a generation, even after the current GOR’s end. The ACC and the Big 12 will survive, especially the ACC. Orphaned schools like Uconn might find a home in the MAC or some other second tier conference.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I’m not sure B1G fans (as opposed to the Conference leadership) want southern schools, either. Maryland might be the extreme limit.

        B1G fans are too large a group to attribute a consensus opinion to them. Those who like the Maryland addition would probably favor its logical implication, which is to continue expanding in that direction. Those who oppose further expansion are probably not happy with Maryland either, because it means fewer games between traditional Big Ten foes.

        B1G fans might not want Notre Dame. It might have been possible 10 to 20 years ago,but there is too much bad blood now. And ND seems to be ditching its long term B1G series. Purdue will go next. They’ll just keep MSU.

        This is a classic case of what FTT warns against: thinking like a fan, rather than a university president. The presidents have none, I repeat, none of the animosity towards ND that the fans do. Of course, ND is not available anyway, but if they were, the Big Ten would take them in a heartbeat.

        If ND goes down to one annual Big Ten game, Purdue is probably the one they’d keep. They have more tradition with Purdue, and it’s a game they win more often. It’s also a game that Purdue is desperate to keep, because no other high-profile program is willing to play them home & home. MSU is a bit sexier, and has been able to schedule good series without needing Notre Dame.

        Orphaned schools like Uconn might find a home in the MAC or some other second tier conference.

        I’m not sure how you get UConn to the MAC. If they ever leave the AAC, the only direction they’re going is up, not down.

        • bob sykes says:

          I was giving what I thought was thebfan viewpoint, and you are correct that the prezs etal think differently. But the MAC is a substantial step up from the AAC.

    • gfunk says:

      I continue to fvck up the proper use of there, they’re and their : ).

    • bullet says:

      Why is it a headscratcher to lower your revenue and add someone who is below the conference average like Louisville and Cincinnati? Neither of those programs was any different than Memphis a couple decades ago. It was a sign of strength not to panic and take those two. Although, without knowing what the TV people said, I would have been inclined to take UL and WVU over TCU and WVU. I suspect the TV people said TCU was the most valuable because of their success in the BCS era. TV is very much, “What have you done for me lately?”

      • gfunk says:

        Lville & revenue are only going up for the time being. They have a bigger stadium than half the current Big12 and one of the most profitable M-W’s basketball pairs in the country. Lville can win the football claims in Ky – basketball, different story. Plus a combo of Lville, WVa and perhaps Cincy helps reduce travel expenses.

        • bullet says:

          Last 4 years average football attendance when UL has done well, they are behind all of the Big 12 schools other than the two privates. They’re even behind Kansas. Basketball doesn’t generate enough TV revenue to the conferences to be particularly relevant.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          …a combo of Lville, WVa and perhaps Cincy helps reduce travel expenses.

          Travel expenses would be a rounding error in the budget, if they had to split the same TV deal 12 ways instead of 10. It would certainly have been better for the Mountaineers, but I’m not seeing that it would have been better for the other nine.

          There’s also the division-split problem. On a pure geographical split, you’d have:

          South: Texas, TT, Baylor, TCU, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State
          North: Kansas, KState, Iowa State, Cincy, Louisville, West Virginia

          Those two divisions would be ridiculously unbalanced. I don’t know how many votes the Big XII needs to expand, but I think Kansas, KState and Iowa state would hate the schedule implied by this alignment, replacing annual TX/OK games with lesser teams they have no history with. The Texas/Oklahoma bloc won’t agree to split up either.

          Because of all this, they’d need to be offered a very financially compelling picture, before they’d expand again, and I don’t think they can get that without adding at least one king. Louisville and Cincy aren’t kings.

  34. Craig Z says:

    Go Bucks.

  35. Psuhockey says:

    I think you are right that the ACC will stay together mainly because UNC is stuck in a no win situation right now. Their fans, alumni, and boosters overwhelmingly favor the SEC however the administration and academic side will never go for that move. As In_Fan posted above, look who UNC considers its peers: UPenn, USC, northwestern, Duke, John Hopkins, Michigan, Wisconsin, Berkley, ucla, Minnesota, UMD, UVA, Pitt, and Washington. That is the cream of the crop. The SEC is slumming it comparatively.

    I agree that the big 12 is next to go but there will be defections from the ACC. $20 million less by 2017 is a huge number. You could fund a giant portion of all the nonrevenue sports just on that number. More and more athletic departments are borrowing from the university to pay its bills. The economics will be too much to ignore for some. That being said, I could see the ACC becoming the new Big 12 when their GOR comes up after a few defections: a couple of top schools with UNC playing the part of Texas and the rest serfs with nowhere else to go.

    • Psuhockey says:

      That was in response to gfunk.

    • David Brown says:

      I do not see major implosions or Defections when it comes to Big 5 (ACC, Big 10, Big XII, PAC & SEC) Schools. If Football Playing Schools need extra revenue they could add an extra game. Now I know that University President’s do not like that, but it is better alternative then implosion.
      If you look at the B10, you can make the argument that the worst program Top To Bottom is Purdue (potentially they could sink further behind if one day Notre Dame drops them). If the B10 decided to go to a 10 Game Conference Schedule (13 overall), they can be guaranteed to have Michigan or Ohio State visit every Ross-Ade more often, which (along with extra TV $$$$$) would really help them to compete. Of course, for the bigger Schools, it becomes important as well (look at the impact that yesterday’s Michigan classic had on Penn State? Recruiting, attendance, and TV Coverage). Going forward, we will have either Michigan or Ohio State every year at Beaver Stadium, and Pitt every other year (we just need to have another “Big School” come every year Pitt does not. It could be a Nebraska, or a Wisconsin or a West Virginia? But it would mean 107,000 people like last night, and that pays a lot of bills ps. Don’t think the B10 noticed that )). I predict this will happen.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I do not see major implosions or Defections when it comes to Big 5 (ACC, Big 10, Big XII, PAC & SEC) Schools. If Football Playing Schools need extra revenue they could add an extra game. Now I know that University President’s do not like that, but it is better alternative then implosion.

        Here is where I think your rationale breaks down:

        The reason for expansion is income disparity. Maryland sees that it can earn $20 million more per year in the B1G, and there’s just no way they can turn that down.

        If you add a 13th game, the income doesn’t just go up for Purdue. It goes up for everyone. If there was a $20 million disparity with 12 football games, there’s a $20 million disparity with 13. Indeed, it could be that adding football games just amplifies the disparity, because Penn State earns a lot more for the extra home game than Purdue does.

        • David Brown says:

          I agree with you that income goes up for everybody (and that would be a good thing, wouldn’t it?) But the “Have Not Schools” (like Purdue) need it even more so they can upgrade their facilities and programs. Again using Purdue versus Penn State, the capacity at Ross-Ade is 62,500 compared to 107,282 at Beaver Stadium. Basically the worst attendance you can expect to see at Penn State is about 30,000 more than you will find at Purdue for their most desirable match-up (and that means Notre Dame, Indiana, Ohio State or Michigan in town to play the Boilermakers). Speaking of Indiana, with the guarantee of either Ohio State or Michigan visiting Bloomington every year, I could actually see IU surpass Purdue in the Big 10 football pecking order, if Purdue loses the Notre Dame Game.

    • Pablo says:

      PSUhockey,
      A $20M per year per team disparity amongst the Power 5 conferences is economically unsustainable. Possibly it could occur for a year or two, but the large disparity means that there is too much inefficiency and someone will innovate to address the problem. This disparity means that the B1G television value is worth at least double the ACC (comparable number of schools as the B1G).
      If the revenue growth from the BTN is going to be that dramatic, then an ACC Network would likely make a lot of additional revenue for the ACC schools…as well as ESPN. No one wants to leave money on the table for too long.

      • ccrider55 says:

        Their inventory (all of any value) is all spoken for. Expect ESPN to pay the 2M/school in leu of an ACCN, as their agreement called for.

        • vp19 says:

          And as years go by, that $2M will carry less and less weight for ACC members, especially as they recruit against schools from conferences who do have active networks..

          • ccrider55 says:

            Oh, I know. I’m actually wondering how they got that commitment as they have no “free” inventory. Even if they do start an ACCN (and buy back inventory) it won’t be very productive until current contracts expire. But with the GOR what choice do they have? Perhaps 2M/yr was the price to sign it.

      • Psuhockey says:

        Pablo,
        Why is the $20 million gap unsustainable? If all the power 5 were equally valuable than yes there is a market inefficiency but the conferences are not. These are entertainment properties with a different level of popularity. Popular shows pay their actors more than unpopular shows in perpetuity. Unless ratings across the board even out, the $20 million difference could continue forever.

        • ccrider55 says:

          Far greater disparity exists inter conference with athletic dept. budgets (Mich/Purdue, UT/ISU, WSU/USC, etc).

          If the media revenue reflects a failure to realize proper value it can be a problem. Ironically it is a much more significant portion of the lesser schools AD budgets than the coveted schools, who hold the fate of their conferences.

          • bullet says:

            Texas likely makes more than anyone on TV, but it is still less than 20% of their revenues. I think FSU was around $80 million in total revenue, so it was only around 20% of theirs. You have to consider if maximizing TV revenues hurts other revenues. Colorado was willing to go to the Pac 12 even if it meant less TV revenue because they figured they would more than make it up based on their fund-raising success in previous trips to California.

          • psuhockey says:

            “Far greater disparity exists inter conference with athletic dept. budgets (Mich/Purdue, UT/ISU, WSU/USC, etc).”

            This is true and it will lead to more consolidation IMO at some point. There is a lot of dead weight in the Big 12 and to a lesser extent the ACC as far as television appeal. These conferences are being held together by a couple of big brands willing to subsidize the other schools athletic programs. The BIG ten can be said to be similar but doesn’t have as many noncontributors as those two conferences. The rankings are my opinion based not just on recent success.

            BIG: Football Kings: PSU, OSU, Michigan, Nebraska
            Basketball Kings: Indiana, Michigan State
            Hockey Kings (actually matters in specific states in Midwest and New England): Minnesota
            State Headliners: Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Maryland, Rutgers plus above Kings
            None of the Above:Purdue, Northwestern

            Big 12: Football Kings: Oklahoma, Texas
            Basketball Kings: Kansas
            State Headliners: West Virginia plus above Kings
            None of the Above: Okie State, Kansas State, TCU, Texas Tech, Baylor, ISU

            ACC: Football Kings: No top 10 alltime except partial member ND
            *Football Princes: Clemson, FSU, Miami, Va Tech, GT
            Basketball Kings: UNC, Duke, Syracuse, Louisville
            Hockey Kings: BC(Hockey East, no ACC conference)
            State Headliners: UVA
            None of the above: Nc State, Wake Forest, Pitt

            *I made up another category to describe the football schools of the ACC. These schools have a better tradition than the Okie State and Kansas States of the world but not on the traditional level of Texas, OU, ND, Michigan, etc. They have value but are a step below IMO.

            Now every school brings something to a conference so it would be complete false to say TCU or Baylor or Louisville add nothing. But Sports Kings and State Headliners bring a certain level of interest outside of their alumni base (Rutgers is debatable) for television purposes. The Big 12 only has 4 such programs out of 10. How long will those programs want to prop up the other 6? How long will networks want to give a ton of money to Iowa State, TCU and the rest just to get UT and Oklahoma? The ACC is a weird case in that they have a lot of valuable programs but very few headliners (only two state headliners in UVA and UNC and a few basketball kings). The ACC looks like it could stay together long term as long as those schools were content with making less money than the BIG or SEC.

          • psuhockey says:

            *edit Michigan State is not a state headliner

          • ccrider55 says:

            Bullet:

            “Texas likely makes more than anyone on TV…”

            Temporarily, and only as an anti P16 bribe.

            PSU:

            Unless the kings want to join in a cingle conference (and all become .500 teams), the others are essential to a conferences well being.
            “The Big 12 only has 4 such programs out of 10. How long will those programs want to prop up the other 6?”
            Who’s the fourth?
            None of the B8 got left when forming the B12.
            It’s a matter of who another conference invites. The invitee doesn’t get to dictate who and when they join. They need the others, until they can move.

          • Psuhockey says:

            Ccrider,
            The fourth is West Virginia. They are at least are the state’s headlining school even though West Virginia isn’t exactly a populous state. The reality is that Oklahoma and Texas and to a lesser extent Kansas make up the Big 12′s worth but at least West Virginia adds something.

            As far as the kings all joining and being .500: the point is that the “bad” football teams in the BIG bring something to the television pie. Texas and OU can beat up on Indiana and Minnesota in football while enjoying there contributions to the leagues television pot in the winter thru basketball and hockey. What does Texas get for being associated with Iowa State in television when ISU isn’t even the headliner for the state? Is it a coincidence that the two richest conferences have the least overlap in states and the most state headlining schools?

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            That’s an interesting analysis by @psuhockey. I hadn’t ever thought of it that way.

            Leagues need doormats to beat up on; as someone pointed out, no one wants a league of all .500 schools. Someone needs to be the perennial loser, so that others can be winners. That’s why Temple is the only modern example of a school kicked out of a league for being bad at football.

            There is a certain collegiality in conference make-up, which is why there aren’t more Temples. Leagues don’t go out and acquire dead wood (if they can avoid it); but they don’t eliminate the dead wood they’ve already got.

            But as @psuhockey pointed out, most football doormats contribute something else of value, such as being a king in another major sport, or being the flagship school in their state. Among P5 leagues, the Big XII has the highest proportion of schools that do neither.

          • Completely agree with psuhockey. A major strength of both the Big Ten and SEC is that there’s very little complete deadweight from a conference realignment perspective. Even the Big Ten schools outside of the kings and state headliners bring value: Northwestern is an academic powerhouse located directly in the Chicago market (which is the alumni center of the Big Ten and needs multiple schools to be “delivered” for TV purposes), while Michigan State and Purdue would be flagships in the vast majority of other states and have large fan bases (the former very solid across all of the major Big Ten sports of football, basketball and hockey, while the latter brings more basketball fans from the most basketball-mad state).

          • ccrider55 says:

            We need another term for the less prominent members. Dead weight, leaches, etc are not the true discription of them. A poor analogy might be an OG or deep snapper aren’t a drag on a FB team, or even noticed much except when they screw up (but a QB will still be a star inspite of occasional picks). They are in fact essential.

          • frug says:

            We need another term for the less prominent members. Dead weight, leaches, etc are not the true discription of them. A poor analogy might be an OG or deep snapper aren’t a drag on a FB team, or even noticed much except when they screw up (but a QB will still be a star inspite of occasional picks). They are in fact essential.

            They are not essential. The ACC gains nothing from dragging along Wake Forrest. WSU adds nothing to the PAC they don’t have already, Miss St. and Northwestern take more than bring to the Big 10 and half the Big XII could be best described as Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas opponents.

            The fact is many of these cases simply tossing out those teams and splitting pie fewer ways would be an upgrade and even if they needed to be replaced (say for CCG purposes or whatever) the freely available teams (UNLV, Nevada, BSU, New Mexico, Cincy, UConn or even USF and UCF) would be upgrades.

          • bullet says:

            Don’t agree. You are forgetting fan support, rivalries and the actual competitiveness. There may be addition by subtraction, but replacing those schools would rarely be an improvement.

            Most of those schools you mentioned are terrible in football. When you look at long run average attendance, Air Force, Fresno, Hawaii, UTEP, East Carolina and South Florida are the only schools ahead of any P5 school other than Wake Forest and Duke. If you look only more recently, the last 4 years, UConn and UCF join that group plus a few schools pass Washington St. who has been awful lately.

            In the last 4 years, only ECU and USF crack the top 62 in attendance other than P5 schools, ND and BYU. Remaining P5 schools are BC #64, Vandy #67, NW #72, WF #77, WSU #81 and Duke #82. The P5 has the best schools and there really is a gap with only a few schools near or above the gap.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Frug:

            They are, through rivalries and history, essential to the conference. Wake and WSU may not be essential to FSU or USC, but they are to enough other members the conference. Unless they are willing and able to leave for another conference (which one has no equivalent members?) or independence, the conference is essential to the Seminoles and Trojans.

          • frug says:

            @bullet

            Attendance isn’t always a huge issue. The Big Ten, PAC, SEC and ACC all lowered their average attendance as a result of expansion but still made more money by adding media markets. Cincy and UConn might have lower attendance than ISU (just as an example) but they would do a much better job of addressing the Big XII’s biggest weaknesses (small population footprint and lack of attractive media markets).

            This also goes with WSU being dropped in favor of Boise, UNLV, New Mexico or Nevada or any number of replacements for Vanderbilt or Northwestern.

            @ccrider55

            If WF left the ACC, the ACC would make more money. If FSU or UNC left the ACC would collapse. Wake is not “essential” in any sense of the word.

          • frug says:

            I should say that I am not advocating that the SEC, PAC or Big 10 actually start kicking out members (since they can afford drag along their have-nots), I’m just saying that the Northwesterns and Vandys of the world are by no means essential.

          • bullet says:

            As I said, there could be addition by subtraction. SEC probably wouldn’t lose a dime without Vandy and Mississippi St., but I don’t think anyone in the G5 would make more for them than staying at 12. I don’t see any of those schools from small population states where the Pac 12 already has some interest doing any better than breaking even vs. Washington St. Maybe UConn or Cincinnati adds a little over Wake Forest. But I don’t see either of those adding vs. Iowa St. UConn is really on an island and Cincinnati has a limited radius of interest.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            As I said, there could be addition by subtraction. SEC probably wouldn’t lose a dime without Vandy and Mississippi St.

            The various conferences have been pretty ruthless over the years, and I don’t recall any of them even thinking about booting out their dead wood, aside from Temple in the Big East, a decision that was eventually reversed.

          • bullet says:

            frug and I are talking about value and hypotheticals, not actions. I don’t think anyone believes there is any chance the SEC kicks out Vandy or the Pac 12 kicks out WSU.

        • Pablo says:

          Psu hockey,
          Two reasons:
          1) The Power 5 conferences compete in the same industry/market. There is a pecking order, but the similarities are greater than the differences. These conferences are growing in order to expand markets, gain leverage in negotiations with broadcasters, and control TV inventory. Although the recent run of SEC on-field performance is impressive, I’d argue that each of the Power 5 conferences football products are more comparable than different. Last year the B12 was strong; this year the PAC is strong and the cream of the ACC is producing. The non Power 5 FBS conferences are in no way in the same league.
          2) $20M per team differential = $300M to entire B1G = $600M overall profit (50% owned by TV partners)…the TV payout would be double the ACC amount for a comparable inventory. Assuming ESPN wants to have a going relationship with the ACC, they will have to pay a somewhat comparable rate…not equal, but similar. ESPN’s own statements when announcing contracts with both the SEC and ACC acknowledge this understanding.

          • frug says:

            ESPN has the ACC locked up for 16 years, what incentive do they have to give them a raise?

          • @frug – They don’t. I’m someone that doesn’t think that the ACC will collapse during this grant of rights period, but a lot of their fans seem to be getting overconfident. The TV money gap between the Big Ten and ACC is very real and it’s going to be in place for a long time. A lot of arguments that I see from ACC fans in thinking that the gap will shrink tend to be some combo of (a) the BTN model will collapse when the basic cable model collapses overall and (b) the “shrinking” population of the Rust Belt. The problem with those arguments is that even if (a) were to occur, it’s been well-established that the Big Ten fans are as intense as anyone next to the SEC, so they’d still have an advantage over other power conferences in an a la carte model (not to mention that the basic cable model also completely supports the ESPN money going to the ACC, so it’s not exactly smart to cheer for that to occur). Under (b), it’s an argument that drives me crazy because the Big Ten population base is NOT shrinking. It’s simply in slow growth mode today. That’s not to say that there aren’t demographic challenges in several Midwestern markets, but places like Chicago, Minneapolis, Indianapolis and Columbus are hardly looking like Rust Belt cities in terms of growth. The fast growth of the Sun Belt won’t last into perpetuity (see the tepid growth of California recently). Plus, the ACC added some slow growth Rust Belt areas itself (Upstate New York and Western Pennsylvania) in its expansion last year.

          • Wainscott says:

            @FranktheTank:

            You are correct, but forget that B1G fans in non-Big Ten states are equally rabid and will pay extra for the BTN. I remember Stewart Mandel talking about meeting Nebraska fans who live in Phoenix who were quite happy and anxious to subscribe to the BTN down in Arizona. I am sure that replicates itself somewhat in California, Florida, New York, and other areas with critical masses of Big Ten alumni who would rather spend $5 bucks a month to get the games vs. $35 worth of booze at a nearby sportsbar every Saturday.

          • David Brown says:

            I agree with Pablo’s evaluation, and I will expand on what is also wrong and (or) missing from PSU Hockey’s opinion of certain Schools & Conferences. 1: Where is the PAC & SEC? I will add them. A: PAC: Football Kings: Oregon & USC. Football Princes: Washington. Basketball Kings: Arizona & UCLA. State Headliners: Arizona State, Colorado & Utah. None of the above: Cal Berkeley, Oregon State, Stanford & Washington State (although no one in their right mind puts Cal & Stanford in the same boat as Oregon State & Washington State). B: SEC: Football Kings: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, LSU. Football Princes: Auburn, South Carolina, Tennessee, & Texas A&M. Basketball King: Kentucky. State Headliners: Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri. None of the above: Mississippi State & Vanderbilt. 2: You brought in Hockey, but do not mention MICHIGAN with NINE National Championships being a King, or Michigan State & Wisconsin as Princes? 3: Since you want to bring Hockey into the Conversation, what about Baseball? Schools that would qualify as “None of the above” like Mississippi State, Oregon State & Vanderbilt certainly qualify as “Princes” (you can actually argue that the Beavers (with two National Championships within 10 years), should qualify as a King). 3: I do not see where Georgia Tech is a “Football Prince” and should be listed on the same level as Clemson, FSU or Miami. 4: Certain Schools qualify as a “King” in multiple sports (such as LSU, North Carolina, Texas & USC), that must be noted as well. 5: You have to look at the size of a School. For example: UVA might be a a “State Headliner” in Virginia, but it is not on the same level as the Number 3 or 4 in California (Cal & Stanford). Nice try though.

          • Psuhockey says:

            David brown,
            I didn’t do the SEC and PAC because those conferences are secure now and in the future IMO. The SEC as you broke broke down only doubles up in 3 states with Auburn being a very good football school. Miss State and Vanderbilt don’t add much to a sports television factor. The PAC is a stable league due as much to geography and time zone as anything else.

            As far as not mentioning Michigan hockey or Wisconsin football: both those schools fall under other categories adding worth to television. Wisconsin is good at football and a state headliner. Michigan and OSU for that matter are good at multiple sports as well as being a state headliners. I only did the prince category for the ACC because Clemson, FSU, Miami, GT and Va Tech are not the flagship but do have worth. GT won a national championship in the last 25 years so I put them in there as well. As I stated, state headliners often have a decent portion of fans outside of their alumni bases typically stronger than other schools from that state. An example: are there as many Iowa State fans as their are Iowa fans? Prince schools will also have a significant fan following outside of their alumni base but not on the level of the kings. Virginia tech has made things interesting in the state of Virginia with their recent success and UVA hard times, but at one point UVA was the unquestioned school of choice for residents of Virginia. Size of alumni does matter as far as rabid fans but televisions is also about getting casual fans not directly associated with the universities which state headliners and kings and princes often do.

            The reason I mentioned hockey and not baseball is that hockey has a passionate following in parts of the country and generates a decent portion of revenue. Baseball I believe is not on the same level. Here is a list of the revenue generated per division I hockey program in 2010. http://www.gopherpucklive.com/index.php?page=blogfull&id=11205
            The total revenues of all 56 (army and Air Force not given) was over $100 million with an average of about $1.8 mil. I tried to find baseball statistics but was unable. However I found article that had some numbers. http://seamheads.com/2012/07/18/college-baseball-economics/
            Here is the part I found intersting

            “Sports Finance. The NCAA reported that a typical baseball program in Fiscal Year 2010 generated median revenue of $338,000 in Division I-A and $71,000 in Division I-AA. Although baseball ranked fourth in revenue among the former group of schools, its median amount exceeded each woman team sport. In other words, football games and then those in men’s basketball, ice hockey, and lacrosse provided more money from ticket sales, their conferences, and other outside sources than did baseball.
            In amount of net revenue, which is generated revenue less expenses, baseball teams in Division I-A had the highest median loss among men sports at ($605,000), second highest in Division I-AA at ($137,000), and fifth highest in Division II at ($7,000). As a result, schools had to subsidize their baseball programs although football in Division I-A and men’s ice hockey and lacrosse, and women’s crew, ice hockey, and volleyball in Division II each had net revenue greater than $0.”

            So according to this baseball is not only behind hockey but also lacrosse. Now more schools play baseball so that does bring down the average but did a single baseball program in America make $6.7 million dollars last year with a profit of $4.7 like Minnesota hockey did? I would love to see the actual statistics if anybody can find them.

          • bullet says:

            Crew had net positive revenue? Find that hard to believe.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            psuhockey – Less than 60 schools field D-1 Men’s Hockey programs. By contrast there are over 300 D-1 baseball programs. Only nine AQ schools field a hockey team. Only four AQ schools don’t field a baseball team. Only two schools make a profit of more than a million dollars in hockey (Minnesota $4.01mm and North Dakota $1.47mm). Only two baseball programs make a profit of more than one million dollars (LSU $2.11mm and Texas $1.92mm). LSU’s profit numbers are only that low as its paying off the bond on a 5 year old $40mm new baseball stadium.

            http://college-sports.findthedata.org/

            Hockey teams play about 20 home games per year. Most baseball teams play at least 30 home games. 46 hockey teams average 1500 or more for attendance. 42 baseball teams average 1500 or more for attendance. LSU averaged over 11000 over 43 home dates last season while Minnesota averaged about 9500 in 2010-11. I’m not trying to denigrate hockey but the sports are different. The baseball season is longer. Hockey is played inside when there is nothing else to do on many campuses where hockey is their only or main sport. Baseball is played outdoors in the spring when the weather is nice.

          • David Brown says:

            PSU Hockey, the real problem is many Schools choose not to compete, and are quite content with losing, as long as they collect $$$$, and until there is a real threat of throwing teams out of a Conference, it may not change. You mentioned Iowa State versus Iowa (I would bet on the Cubs winning the World Series before ISU getting to (not even winning) a Major Bowl Game). They choose not to compete for talent, and for fan interest. Look at Cael Sanderson. You can make an argument he is the greatest athlete ever produced at Iowa State. But they instead of spending $$$$ to keep him at Coach, they let him go to Penn State, and what happened? Not only do the Nitts have the best Wrestling Program in America, but ISU is behind Iowa as well. That is my problem with Penn State hoops: Dave Joyner (like Curley before him) really does not care, if we lose at Basketball to the Pitt Panthers. Pitt is even worse when it comes to Football: They should not be sharing a Stadium with the Steelers, when even Baylor is building an On-Campus Stadium. What has happened hurts Recruiting? Pitt: ONE Four-Star Recruit (Mike Grimm), Baylor and Penn State FOUR. Nuff said

          • Brian says:

            Frank,

            I think the lesson will hit home for most fans once the B10 actually completes their new TV deals. Right now there are just projections for what UMD would make in the B10 vs the ACC. In 2017, it will be facts (including the new playoff money, too).

          • vp19 says:

            If we’re going to include hockey and baseball in the equation, we must include women’s basketball, too. Queens: Tennessee, Connecticut, Stanford. Princesses: Maryland, LSU, Louisville, Notre Dame, Duke, North Carolina, Baylor, Purdue. A step below them, Michigan State, Iowa State (attendance-wise), Georgia, Kentucky and a few others.

          • Psuhockey says:

            Alan,

          • Psuhockey says:

            Alan,
            Thanks for the baseball numbers. It does look like a there are a few very profitable baseball team especially in the SEC, LSU, Mississippi State, and Vanderbilt to name a few. It should do well on the SECN network. My original point that I was trying to express is that hockey in Minnesota matters to the point of adding a decent amount to the television package. Minnesota is the home of hockey in the US and the gophers. Much like football in Texas, all be it at a much smaller level as football is religion in that state, high school hockey is hugely import in the state. Kids grow up watching and wanting to play for the gophers. I never lived in Mississippi or Louisiana so I cant speak to the popularity of baseball down there. However as an avid hockey fan, I know the importance of hockey in Minnesota and that hockey on the BTN and other television formats, as it has deals to air games national with both ESPN and NBC and regionally with fox sport networks, will be a good contributor to the overall television money of the conference.

  36. duffman says:

    This post was getting long so broke it into Big 5 schools and non Big 5 schools
    Part 1 of 2 = Big 5 schools

    ************ Top 10 SoS for week 7 according to Sagarin ************
    01 Georgia = @ Clemson + S Carolina + BYE + N Texas + LSU + @ Tennessee + Missouri
    02 Ole Miss = @ Vanderbilt + SEMO St + @ Texas + BYE + @ Alabama + @ Auburn + TAMU
    03 UK = WKU (TN) + Miami (OH) + Louisville + BYE + Florida + @ South Carolina + Alabama
    04 Cal = Northwestern + Portland St + Ohio St + BYE + @ Oregon + Washington St + @ UCLA
    05 Col = Colorado St + C Ark + Fresno St + BYE + @ Oregon St + Oregon + @ Arizona St
    06 SMU = Texas Tech + Montana State + BYE + @ Texas A&M + @ TCU + Rutgers + BYE
    07 UW = Boise State + BYE + @ Illinois + Idaho State + Arizona + @ Stanford + Oregon
    08 UNC = @ S Carolina + MTSU + BYE + @ Ga Tech + ECU + @ Virginia Tech + BYE
    09 Utah = Utah State + Weber State + Oregon State + @ BYU + BYE + UCLA + Stanford
    10 Texas = N M St + @ BYU + Ole Miss + Kansas State + BYE + @ Iowa State + Oklahoma

    Updated Sagarin after week 7 run with SoS rank mid season point :
    first 8 numbers are Sagarin Rank by week (preseason included)
    last 7 numbers are Sagarin SoS by week (weakest SoS in group in BOLD)

    ACC – Atlantic
    018 014 011 008 004 005 003 003 Florida State – 41 / 25 / 70 / 108 / 73 / 57 / 51
    016 011 017 014 014 012 006 009 Clemson – 27 / 117 / 109 / 37 / 74 / 61 / 56
    063 062 053 049 032 020 033 046 Maryland – 147 / 193 / 164 / 146 / 142 / 90 / 101
    067 064 068 064 062 060 073 059 Syracuse – 42 / 18 / 42 / 103 / 77 / 42 / 45
    091 090 083 090 086 076 072 064 Boston College – 127 / 156 / 114 / 84 / 38 / 70 / 22
    050 042 054 060 064 069 078 089 N Carolina State – 106 / 147 / 173 / 121 / 162 / 134 / 112
    070 093 094 101 093 104 091 093 Wake Forest – 205 / 185 / 153 / 152 / 109 / 104 / 102

    ACC – Costal
    028 030 023 020 021 022 017 020 Miami (FL) – 144 / 99 / 79 / 190 / 161 / 95 / 96
    029 025 027 031 038 024 025 026 Virginia Tech – 1 / 63 / 43 / 58 / 9 / 20 / 38
    046 048 032 024 024 034 035 040 Georgia Tech – 169 / 215 / 140 / 82 / 76 / 41 / 19
    056 058 057 063 059 063 061 055 Pittsburgh – 43 / 21 / 85 / 38 / 60 / 69 / 23
    086 095 071 071 072 079 080 071 Duke – 199 / 195 / 124 / 85 / 113 / 113 / 104
    043 040 046 048 047 075 074 073 North Carolina – 5 / 46 / 41 / 3 / 12 / 5 / 8 Top 10 SoS
    068 061 064 062 067 078 090 082 Virginia – 70 / 19 / 6 / 55 / 22 / 27 / 17

    .

    B1G – Leaders
    009 013 014 015 015 013 015 011 Ohio State – 128 / 157 / 123 / 165 / 119 / 84 / 87
    017 021 020 016 018 015 018 013 Wisconsin – 160 / 217 / 200 / 182 / 135 / 133 / 99
    033 033 038 035 031 031 048 042 Penn State – 74 / 142 / 83 / 116 / 108 / 77 / 48
    071 068 069 055 056 064 050 047 Indiana – 143 / 134 / 117 / 72 / 79 / 63 / 37
    099 103 072 059 063 054 064 061 Illinois – 142 / 113 / 57 / 53 / 103 / 72 / 58
    074 074 101 093 097 119 114 133 Purdue – 23 / 91 / 46 / 12 / 21 / 19 / 26

    B1G – Legends
    030 035 044 045 046 041 024 023 Michigan State – 124 / 164 / 182 / 161 / 168 / 106 / 78
    019 019 012 027 034 040 030 034 Michigan – 129 / 81 / 145 / 110 / 133 / 122 / 97
    021 029 029 040 029 047 042 035 Nebraska – 116 / 152 / 99 / 98 / 121 / 108 / 107
    054 054 060 061 055 036 045 044 Iowa – 80 / 137 / 103 / 139 / 85 / 71 / 72
    041 036 035 036 041 039 043 049 Northwestern – 44 / 71 / 107 / 129 / 123 / 96 / 62
    066 066 065 065 061 072 083 077 Minnesota – 141 / 169 / 196 / 184 / 156 / 132 / 127

    .

    Big 12
    026 023 010 010 007 003 004 005 Baylor – 133 / 167 / 165 / 178 / 172 / 149 / 105
    008 008 008 007 011 004 007 018 Oklahoma – 112 / 108 / 113 / 118 / 89 / 65 / 40
    037 032 033 022 022 019 016 021 Texas Tech – 53 / 128 / 74 / 119 / 100 / 93 / 94
    004 002 006 005 003 021 023 022 Oklahoma State – 46 / 78 / 126 / 101 / 63 / 64 / 65
    013 016 024 043 037 044 044 029 Texas – 158 / 94 / 45 / 41 / 35 / 23 / 10 Top 10 SoS
    014 015 022 025 026 030 022 030 Texas Christian – 17 / 74 / 12 / 5 / 28 / 1 / 21
    024 028 034 034 044 045 039 039 Kansas State – 82 / 100 / 132 / 83 / 64 / 28 / 14
    057 063 063 075 074 065 065 060 Iowa State – 108 / 105 / 105 / 68 / 42 / 39 / 24
    042 052 052 053 071 057 062 063 West Virginia – 149 / 53 / 154 / 69 / 13 / 6 / 11
    082 070 081 087 096 099 110 105 Kansas – 212 / 136 / 136 / 170 / 175 / 110 / 52

    .

    PAC – North
    002 007 002 002 002 002 001 001 Oregon – 188 / 136 / 76 / 76 / 104 / 94 / 67
    040 026 021 018 017 010 011 012 Washington – 55 / 40 / 35 / 73 / 40 / 14 / 7 Top 10 SoS
    007 003 003 011 009 006 008 014 Stanford – 93 / 93 / 111 / 77 / 41 / 13 / 13
    025 037 042 041 048 050 049 037 Oregon State – 109 / 148 / 100 / 74 / 92 / 98 / 69
    094 085 066 056 050 046 041 050 Washington State – 31 / 9 / 20 / 70 / 17 / 38 / 35
    059 059 074 080 077 086 102 107 California – 68 / 124 / 60 / 57 / 7 / 10 / 4 Top 10 SoS

    PAC – South
    020 018 016 012 010 011 014 006 UCLA – 103 / 110 / 48 / 115 / 130 / 66 / 92
    022 017 018 017 019 016 020 019 Arizona State – 201 / 116 / 116 / 13 / 10 / 7 / 18
    058 055 045 047 042 032 034 025 Utah – 83 / 138 / 88 / 52 / 39 / 15 / 9 Top 10 SoS
    049 044 026 023 020 028 026 036 Arizona – 140 / 143 / 158 / 155 / 98 / 109 / 71
    023 024 037 028 027 038 040 038 Southern California – 84 / 96 / 97 / 66 / 30 / 30 / 29
    103 102 091 088 088 083 092 099 Colorado – 119 / 153 / 142 / 142 / 78 / 34 / 5 Top 10 SoS

    .

    SEC – East
    038 046 040 037 025 027 019 007 Missouri – 170 / 174 / 171 / 90 / 134 / 81 / 43
    012 012 015 013 013 018 013 015 Florida – 98 / 39 / 23 / 27 / 36 / 22 / 16
    005 005 004 003 005 009 012 016 Georgia – 7 / 6 / 2 / 6 / 1 / 2 / 1 Top 10 SoS
    010 009 009 009 012 017 021 017 South Carolina – 72 / 16 / 21 / 8 / 5 / 17 / 20
    039 053 028 039 045 058 047 045 Tennessee – 198 / 204 / 143 / 42 / 80 / 24 / 30
    034 034 043 038 040 042 056 048 Vanderbilt – 54 / 171 / 38 / 88 / 126 / 91 / 89
    075 083 080 089 090 089 081 086 Kentucky – 96 / 160 / 121 / 117 / 46 / 8 / 3 Top 10 SoS

    SEC – West
    001 001 001 001 001 001 002 002 Alabama – 34 / 22 / 1 / 10 / 6 / 33 / 36
    006 004 005 006 006 007 005 004 Louisiana State – 15 / 65 / 120 / 78 / 31 / 12
    003 006 007 004 008 008 009 010 Texas A&M – 95 / 119 / 64 / 92 / 50 / 51 / 36
    044 045 036 032 033 035 028 027 Auburn – 114 / 112 / 87 / 39 / 33 / 25 / 54
    027 020 031 021 023 025 032 031 Mississippi – 24 / 118 / 25 / 23 / 2 / 3 / 2 Top 10 SoS
    035 039 056 050 039 048 053 052 Mississippi State – 10 / 163 / 19 / 75 / 82 / 16 / 33
    047 041 049 046 051 049 052 066 Arkansas – 105 / 150 / 163 / 130 / 86 / 45 / 27

  37. duffman says:

    This post was getting long so broke it into Big 5 schools and non Big 5 schools
    Part 2 of 2 = non Big 5 schools

    ************ Top 10 SoS for week 7 according to Sagarin ************
    01 Georgia = @ Clemson + S Carolina + BYE + N Texas + LSU + @ Tennessee + Missouri
    02 Ole Miss = @ Vanderbilt + SEMO St + @ Texas + BYE + @ Alabama + @ Auburn + TAMU
    03 UK = WKU (TN) + Miami (OH) + Louisville + BYE + Florida + @ South Carolina + Alabama
    04 Cal = Northwestern + Portland St + Ohio St + BYE + @ Oregon + Washington St + @ UCLA
    05 Col = Colorado St + C Ark + Fresno St + BYE + @ Oregon St + Oregon + @ Arizona St
    06 SMU = Texas Tech + Montana State + BYE + @ Texas A&M + @ TCU + Rutgers + BYE
    07 UW = Boise State + BYE + @ Illinois + Idaho State + Arizona + @ Stanford + Oregon
    08 UNC = @ S Carolina + MTSU + BYE + @ Ga Tech + ECU + @ Virginia Tech + BYE
    09 Utah = Utah State + Weber State + Oregon State + @ BYU + BYE + UCLA + Stanford
    10 Texas = N M St + @ BYU + Ole Miss + Kansas State + BYE + @ Iowa State + Oklahoma

    Updated Sagarin after week 7 run with SoS rank mid season point :
    first 8 numbers are Sagarin Rank by week (preseason included)
    last 7 numbers are Sagarin SoS by week (weakest SoS in group in BOLD)

    AAC
    031 027 019 019 016 014 010 008 Louisville – 111 / 159 / 131 / 168 / 174 / 140 / 125
    052 057 039 030 030 023 031 032 Central Florida – 162 / 172 / 134 / 138 / 69 / 78 / 74
    048 043 047 054 052 053 054 053 Rutgers – 35 / 158 / 206 / 160 / 155 / 115 / 84
    064 077 061 074 068 059 059 056 Houston – 194 / 184 / 209 / 137 / 137 / 136 / 135
    036 031 051 044 049 055 069 070 Cincinnati – 104 / 83 / 133 / 148 / 158 / 152 / 150
    069 072 085 082 092 098 086 094 Sou Methodist – 67 / 90 / 72 / 14 / 3 / 4 / 6 Top 10 SoS
    126 116 127 127 105 100 099 102 Memphis – 103 / 102 / 102 / 111 / 122 / 86 / 63
    061 091 102 135 129 162 123 115 South Florida – 138 / 128 / 128 / 113 / 54 / 43 / 53
    072 088 084 086 082 108 111 122 Connecticut – 125 / 80 / 80 / 49 / 34 / 31 / 60
    093 084 100 122 113 142 141 143 Temple – 6 / 24 / 110 / 81 / 95 / 60 / 42

    .

    CUSA – East
    084 089 086 076 085 056 055 065 East Carolina – 145 / 188 / 138 / 154 / 84 / 80 / 90
    097 094 071 073 066 062 057 067 Marshall – 146 / 219 / 198 / 123 / 124 / 145 / 126
    140 133 146 121 130 114 097 103 Florida Atlantic – 22 / 20 / 31 / 60 / 44 / 54 / 59
    111 118 111 117 102 110 108 121 Middle Tennessee – 183 / 121 / 168 / 134 / 90 / 73 / 68
    124 122 115 109 112 112 136 139 Alabama – Birmingham – 89 / 17 / 8 / 89 / 29 / 76 / 111
    106 125 130 148 138 156 165 163 Southern Mississippi – 151 / 73 / 24 / 18 / 8 / 29 / 39
    136 137 154 175 182 197 180 170 Florida International – 47 / 34 / 52 / 9 / 4 / 26 / 66

    CUSA – West
    081 065 070 066 075 077 076 072 Rice – 2 / 1 / 17 / 35 / 59 / 68 / 73
    131 120 113 100 091 080 084 076 North Texas – 168 / 144 / 129 / 62 / 57 / 55 / 86
    147 148 150 131 128 102 107 100 Tulane – 190 / 218 / 197 / 156 / 141 / 139 / 117
    045 056 067 078 079 101 106 104 Tulsa – 51 / 87 / 33 / 24 / 24 / 46 / 64
    181 171 144 132 106 115 119 124 Texas – San Antonio – 122 / 57 / 11 / 31 / 52 / 35 / 50
    079 078 105 118 119 147 143 146 Louisiana Tech – 29 / 139 / 172 / 132 / 129 / 137 / 131
    115 108 128 123 136 157 156 158 Texas – El Paso – 194 / 194 / 195 / 186 / 164 / 171 / 153

    .

    MAC – East
    087 069 058 072 070 067 067 058 Bowling Green – 86 / 88 / 66 / 107 / 140 / 159 / 129
    127 107 112 116 121 094 088 075 Buffalo – 9 / 2 / 5 / 2 / 16 / 103 / 134
    083 081 092 085 076 082 071 081 Ohio – 19 / 52 / 73 / 106 / 83 / 102 / 119
    102 110 108 111 120 123 115 112 Kent State – 171 / 154 / 90 / 29 / 58 / 59 / 46
    161 155 156 140 134 137 148 144 Akron – 40 / 77 / 18 / 48 / 25 / 36 / 32
    164 153 175 176 175 171 173 165 Massachusetts – 14 / 62 / 13 / 17 / 11 / 11 / 34
    132 136 160 161 167 184 194 189 Miami (OH) – 66 / 44 / 44 / 36 / 19 / 50 / 76

    MAC – West
    053 047 048 057 058 052 051 054 Northern Illinois – 38 / 26 / 77 / 93 / 68 / 83 / 109
    076 067 076 067 065 074 070 068 Toledo – 8 / 4 / 9 / 22 / 20 / 48 / 44
    090 087 077 084 083 073 063 069 Ball State – 136 / 175 / 148 / 175 / 153 / 128 / 130
    114 109 118 142 144 153 147 134 Central Michigan – 13 / 51 / 93 / 80 / 61 / 87 / 88
    107 099 131 139 159 176 181 182 Western Michigan – 25 / 120 / 28 / 16 / 26 / 21 / 41
    151 162 165 168 174 175 186 183 Eastern Michigan – 201 / 132 / 37 / 61 / 48 / 52 / 58

    .

    MWC – Mountain
    016 022 025 029 035 033 036 028 Boise State – 18 / 72 / 122 / 65 / 114 / 125 / 83
    051 050 041 042 036 026 038 041 Utah State – 39 / 28 / 78 / 47 / 45 / 37 / 28
    105 092 079 069 060 071 075 085 Wyoming – 21 / 98 / 175 / 144 / 116 / 129 / 144
    130 130 120 108 101 096 105 109 Colorado State – 97 / 60 / 98 / 51 / 91 / 111 / 106
    073 075 093 102 111 120 120 131 Air Force – 166 / 151 / 58 / 59 / 53 / 49 / 70
    155 170 151 151 148 152 142 140 New Mexico – 172 / 146 / 104 / 97 / 136 / 156 / 136

    MWC – West
    055 051 055 058 057 061 058 051 Fresno State – 77 / 106 / 125 / 71 / 75 / 118 / 113
    077 071 062 068 078 087 087 088 San Jose State – 150 / 56 / 62 / 21 / 14 / 53 / 61
    080 073 078 095 087 090 093 095 Nevada – 12 / 82 / 4 / 54 / 107 / 88 / 91
    062 086 104 099 094 106 104 096 San Diego State – 137 / 49 / 29 / 33 / 51 / 74 / 75
    128 126 140 138 117 117 112 118 UNLV – 49 / 37 / 54 / 109 / 132 / 123 / 133
    121 113 125 113 132 130 132 126 Hawaii – 58 / 27 / 15 / 15 / 27 / 44 / 47

    .

    Sun Belt
    078 076 089 077 080 081 079 079 Louisiana – Lafayette – 28 / 14 / 30 / 63 / 56 / 99 / 108
    110 098 098 105 108 088 082 080 Western Kentucky – 85 / 29 / 63 / 120 / 94 / 92 / 100
    174 177 163 150 152 113 113 114 South Alabama – 156 / 161 / 151 / 164 / 93 / 100 / 98
    095 101 096 097 115 131 122 117 Arkansas State – 191 / 130 / 147 / 133 / 71 / 75 / 120
    157 144 136 144 125 085 101 120 Texas State – 91 / 199 / 211 / 126 / 118 / 89 / 123
    120 121 114 104 122 125 130 135 Troy – 139 / 227 / 178 / 141 / 110 / 131 / 140
    089 082 107 098 104 141 149 138 Louisiana – Monroe – 4 / 129 / 71 / 11 / 55 / 67 / 77
    200 201 208 213 216 208 200 194 Georgia State – 155 / 182 / 141 / 180 / 163 / 117 / 124

    .

    IND
    032 038 030 033 043 043 029 024 Brigham Young – 45 / 32 / 36 / 30 / 47 / 32 / 25
    011 010 013 026 028 037 027 033 Notre Dame – 113 / 42 / 53 / 56 / 32 / 9 / 15
    065 060 059 052 053 070 060 074 Navy – 35 / 35 / 115 / 104 / 70 / 101 / 79
    108 128 139 137 150 129 117 119 Army – 211 / 190 / 75 / 96 / 128 / 79 / 114
    158 164 180 162 166 163 172 171 Idaho – 88 / 61 / 162 / 28 / 37 / 47 / 55
    165 150 170 186 185 189 204 201 New Mexico State – 11 / 33 / 81 / 26 / 62 / 85 / 85

  38. gfunk says:

    Only two BIG teams ranked in this week’s AP25. That’s just sad, very sad. I don’t think NW deserved to fall out – but a blowout loss will do that. Outside Wi, they could beat anyone of the teams ranked 15-25 on a neutral field. Iowa proved as competitive as Tx or TT, but unlike those two, they didn’t need home field or controversy to beat Iowa State. Yet TT sits comfortably in the top 25 at 16.

    All is fine in the end, Neb and either NW or MSU will end up ranked in the end. I think MSU and Neb are blooming in nice ways right now.

    I see Michigan fighting for the top 25 the rest of the way. The have horsecrap lines, both sides of the ball & Gardner continues to produce costly to’s at the worst time, or is it just the fact that every one of his to’s turns into points for the other team? I’m also thinking that Hoke is an average coach in situational contexts. The ever overrated Mattison needs to hang it up at the college level – his schemes are better fitted for the NFL. But hey now, it’s up to the players to hit the weight room and work on technique and speed.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I’m also thinking that Hoke is an average coach in situational contexts.

      I am not sure he is even average. Aside from legacy, on what planet does his resume get you hired at a program like Michigan? If he didn’t have a stint as a Michigan assistant, he wouldn’t have gotten a sniff.

      The ever overrated Mattison needs to hang it up at the college level – his schemes are better fitted for the NFL.

      Mattison has been a collegiate coach for most of his lifetime, so I don’t know where that is coming from. When he was with the Ravens, some of the fans there thought he belonged back in college. He didn’t cover himself in glory yesterday, but on the list of problems Michigan has to fix, they’d have a lot more pressing issues before replacing Mattison would be on the table.

    • Brian says:

      gfunk,

      “Only two BIG teams ranked in this week’s AP25.”

      #4, 25, 26, 27, 28 and 34. They had to make room for 8 SEC teams somehow.

      • gfunk says:

        I hear you. Mizzou deserves to be ranked. I’m not sold on Auburn.

        But the Big12 has 4 teams, OkSt’s resume is no better than MSU or Neb – neither have an ugly loss like WVa.

        VTech’s record is no more distinguished than Neb or MSU. They’ve had a lot more close calls than Neb.

    • I have to disagree about NW. I would probably take at least 40 to 50 teams on a neutral field against them. Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Michigan State are all probably top 25 teams though, provided Sparty’s QB keeps improving.

  39. Andy says:

    Current Sagarin rankings of teams involved in conference realignment:

    7. Missouri
    8. Louisville
    10. Texas A&M
    25. Utah
    30. TCU
    33. Notre Dame
    35. Nebraska
    46. Maryland
    53. Rutgers
    55. Pitt
    59. Syracuse
    63. West Virginia
    99. Colorado

    • vp19 says:

      I want to see what happens if Oregon and Ohio State both go 13-0 and no SEC team finishes unbeaten. Could the SEC be bypassed for the national title game (much to the delight of the rest of the country)?

      • duffman says:

        Oregon is probably in because the rest of the PAC is doing well in the public eye. With Michigan losing last night, it costs B1G perception points. Ohio State is winning, but like Louisville, they are losing on schedule. The biggest non conference game was Cal, and they are 1-5 and becoming a big anchor to the Buckeyes quality of wins. If the Ducks win out and Alabama is at 1 loss, this seems to be the game the non B1G part of the country folks want to see.

        Oddly, if Oklahoma had won out I could have seen demand for them but even if Baylor or Texas Tech sweep, it seems like both will be passed over.

        • gfunk says:

          Michigan lost perceptions points after Akron and then UConn, who got destroyed by Buffalo.

          • duffman says:

            gfunk, I agree in principle but Michigan is still a brand and if they were undefeated going into the Ohio State game the Akron and Uconn games would have been brushed aside – think of Notre Dame last season as example – to allow the end of season buildup between 2 unbeaten teams. With the loss to Penn State the Akron and Uconn wins come back to haunt them.

      • gfunk says:

        It could be argued a 1-loss SEC or ACC team would get the nod over OSU. The ACC, despite a miserable BCS record, has a nice 3-team race going on and all of those schools have NC pedigree – Clemson, Miami and FSU. Fans would truly think a 1-loss ACC team simply endured a greater challenge throughout the season.

        In another hypothetical, I wonder what happens if the ACC and SEC both have very strong 1-loss teams like FSU or Bama and Baylor finishes undefeated?

        Who do you take amongst a crop of Oregon, OSU, Baylor (all undefeated) and a 1-loss FSU and Bama.

        I’d think Baylor would be the furthest on the outside amongst the undefeated teams. This could be a slam against the Big12′s preferential hierarchy. If OU or Tx were on the same boat, we’d likely have an Oregon vs OU or Tx NCG, any other year.

        The country, outside Ohio and some BIG fanatics, would go apeshit if OSU got in. Oregon would be a lock for one of the spots.

        • I don’t think that there’s any question an undefeated Oregon or UCLA would get in the title game over a 1-loss SEC team or an undefeated Ohio State. For that matter, I don’t think there’s any question an unbeaten ACC team would get the nod over an undefeated Ohio State or a 1-loss SEC team either. On the flip side, an undefeated Ohio State, 1-loss SEC, ACC, or Pac team would get in over undefeated Louisville or Houston (still technically a BCS team). The real question for me would be where an undefeated Baylor squad would fit in. I think that based on strength of schedule, quality of wins, and the eye test undefeated Baylor trumps an undefeated Ohio State and 1-loss team SEC/ACC/Pac 12.

          • David Brown says:

            I do not see it happening but if Texas Tech wins out (that means winning @ Oklahoma, West Virginia, & Texas & beating Baylor @ Home) they would be ahead of Ohio State).

      • Brian says:

        vp19,

        “I want to see what happens if Oregon and Ohio State both go 13-0 and no SEC team finishes unbeaten. Could the SEC be bypassed for the national title game (much to the delight of the rest of the country)?”

        At some point, OSU’s hypothetical 25 game winning streak would become a factor. Even if you think the B10 stinks, winning 17 straight games against them is difficult. If you suppose OSU had a 90% chance of winning each B10 game, that’s only a 17% chance of going 17-0. Extend that to OOC, and you’re talking a 7% chance of being 25-0. Nobody really believes OSU had 90% in every game, either. Make it 80%, and OSU had a 0.4% chance of going 25-0. In other words, OSU has to be better than you think to get 25-0 or ridiculously lucky.

        Also, look at the SEC. In the East, only 6-0 MO (minus their QB as they get ready to play UF and SC back to back and then finish with TAMU) and 5-1 SC (still have MO, UF and Clemson) have 1 or fewer losses. A 10-2 champ is likely (maybe 9-3). In the West, you have 6-0 AL, 6-1 LSU, 5-1 TAMU and 5-1 Auburn. LSU still has to play AL and TAMU, and Auburn has yet to play AL and TAMU, plus the aforementioned TAMU/MO game. AL has the easiest remaining path, but the others would find it tough to finish at 12-1 I think.

        If SC wins the East, their result against Clemson could be huge. If anyone other than AL wins the West, that would be huge. I think a 12-1 AL would have a strong shot at the NCG, but I’m not sure another SEC team would get the same treatment. Remember, in your scenario OSU would probably be #2 in the polls (voters love undefeated teams) and they’d move up in the computers as other teams lose (Stanford is gone, FSU/Clemson loser will drop, Clemson/SC loser will drop, etc).

        • bullet says:

          I don’t think there is any chance a 1 loss SEC team (i.e. LSU or Alabama) gets in over an unbeaten Pac 12, Big 10, Big 12 or ACC champ. AP voters don’t count. Coaches respect what it takes to go unbeaten, even against weaker opposition. And the computer polls normally weight wins more heavily than SOS. Baylor, Ohio St. and Florida St. still have the meat of their schedule ahead of them.

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “I don’t think there is any chance a 1 loss SEC team (i.e. LSU or Alabama) gets in over an unbeaten Pac 12, Big 10, Big 12 or ACC champ.”

            P12 or ACC I agree. OR would be #1 in all the polls and Clemson/FSU/Miami would have a win over an SEC rival plus the CCG win (I think UCLA is much less likely to win out).

            The B12 is down to Baylor and TT, and neither has beaten anyone of note yet. Both have 3 ranked teams left to play, so I doubt either survives. Even if they do, the computers won’t love them. The lack of a 13th game to boost their SOS could be important, too.

            I could see the computers lifting AL over OSU potentially. They’d be #2 and #3 in the polls, but the computers hate OSU for their weak schedule.

            “AP voters don’t count. Coaches respect what it takes to go unbeaten, even against weaker opposition.”

            True, but they’re only 2/3 of the system. If AL is a close #3 in the polls, then the computers could bump them up to #2 in the BCS.

            “And the computer polls normally weight wins more heavily than SOS.”

            OSU isn’t even top 10 in Sagarin. 4. LSU, 10. TAMU, 11. OSU. And LSU would add wins over #2 AL, #7 MO and #10 TAMU plus the CCG.

            “Baylor, Ohio St. and Florida St. still have the meat of their schedule ahead of them.”

            Not OSU. We play IA, PSU, @PU, @IL, IN and @MI (plus the CCG). WI and NW back to back were the meat of our schedule. MI is the toughest game left.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The BCS left an undefeated USC team out of the NCG. If they can do that to a Pac-12 king, they could do it to a Big Ten king.

          • frug says:

            @Marc

            USC had one loss that year and they changed the BCS formula immediately afterwards to incorporate human voters.

          • bullet says:

            Baylor is already #5 in Sagarin and they haven’t played anyone yet.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @frug: Oh, sorry…I forgot.

      • acaffrey says:

        I just want the two best teams, be they SEC or MAC.

        Alabama/Oregon would be a great game. Chess match between offense and defense. We could do a lot worse.

        • duffman says:

          I think this is a real issue and can see that very matchup even if either has 1 loss by the end. Big 12 is already done because neither Baylor or Texas Tech have brand status. With no other undefeated B1G teams left it will make Ohio State look weaker. Not saying it is fair but the perception is what drives the country as a whole. While I may be happy with Indiana winning it is not helping the conference as a whole. I really felt an undefeated Michigan State meeting an undefeated Ohio State in the CCG would keep more focus on the B1G as a whole as the season progressed. The loss to Notre Dame followed by Notre Dame not being pegged with 2 losses means less visibility for Sparty.

          PAC is now in the #2 spot in the national eye and the ACC darlings still have much work to do. With Clemson and Florida State meeting, one will drop out. Virginia Tech still has to play Miami and the early loss to Alabama has put them on the forgotten list. They still have to play Miami and if they win Miami will not make a MNC over a 1 loss Alabama or 1 loss Oregon. Maybe my view is skewed but I can see this BCS MNC as a SEC vs PAC matchup and just the teams have yet to be determined. I still see Alan’s Tigers with 1 loss at the end as a very real chance to slip into the MNC over undefeated Louisville / Baylor / Texas Tech and possibly even an undefeated Ohio State.

  40. duffman says:

    The Ranks of the undefeated (14 teams) after Week #7 – season midpoint :

    Big 5 schools 10 of 62 = 16.13% of population : 10 of 125 = 08.00% of total
    ACC = 03 of 14 => 21.43% : Florida State, Clemson, and Miami (FL)
    B 12 = 02 of 10 => 20.00% : Texas Tech and Baylor
    PAC = 02 of 12 => 16.67% : Oregon and UCLA
    SEC = 02 of 14 => 14.29% : Alabama and Missouri
    B1G = 02 of 12 => 08.33% : Ohio State

    Non Big 5 schools 04 of 63 = 06.35% of population : 04 of 125 = 03.20% of total
    AAC = 02 of 10 => 20.00% : Louisville and Houston
    MWC = 01 of 12 => 08.33% : Fresno State
    MAC = 01 of 13 => 07.69% : Northern Illinois
    IND = 00 of 06 => 00.00% : NONE
    SunB = 00 of 08 => 00.00% : NONE
    CUSA = 00 of 14 => 00.00% : East -> NONE \\\\//// West -> NONE

    .

    .

    ******** Undefeated schools ( schools that did not play are highlighted in bold ) ********

    ACC Atlantic : 6-0 Clemson and 5 – 0 Florida State :::: ACC Costal : 5 – 0 Miami (FL)

    B1G Legends : NONE :::: B1G Leaders : 6-0 Ohio State

    B 12 : 6-0 Texas Tech and 5-0 Baylor

    PAC North : 6-0 Oregon :::: PAC South : 5-0 UCLA

    SEC East : 6-0 Missouri :::: SEC West : 6-0 Alabama

    AAC : 6-0 Louisville and 5-0 Houston

    MAC East : NONE :::: MAC West : 6-0 Northern Illinois

    MWC West : 5-0 Fresno State :::: MWC Mountain : NONE

    .

    .

    ******** Undefeated teams playing in week #8 (both undefeated in bold) ********

    AAC vs AAC
    4-1 Central Florida @ 6-0 Louisville | Friday 8:00 pm | ESPN
    4-2 Memphis @ 5-0 Houston | Saturday 3:30 pm | ESPN / ESPN2 / ESPNU

    ACC vs ACC
    5-0 Miami (FL) @ 1-4 North Carolina | Thursday 7:30 pm | ESPN
    5-0 Florida State @ 6-0 Clemson | Saturday 8:00 pm | ABC

    B12 vs B12
    6-0 Texas Tech @ 3-3 West Virginia | Saturday 12:00 pm | FOX 1
    1-4 Iowa State @ 5-0 Baylor | Saturday 7:00 pm | ESPNU

    B1G vs B1G
    4-2 Iowa @ 6-0 Ohio State | Saturday 3:30 pm | ABC

    MAC vs MAC
    6-0 Northern Illinois @ 3-4 Central Michigan | Saturday 3:00 pm | ESPN3

    MWC vs MWC
    4-2 UNLV @ 5-0 Fresno State | Saturday 10:00 pm | ????

    PAC vs PAC
    5-0 UCLA @ 5-1 Stanford | Saturday 3:30 pm | ABC / ESPN2
    4-3 Washington State @ 6-0 Oregon | Saturday 10:00 pm | Fox 1

    SEC vs SEC
    4-2 Florida @ 6-0 Missouri | Saturday 12:21 pm | ESPN3
    3-4 Arkansas @ 6-0 Alabama | Saturday 7:00 pm | ESPN / ESPN2

    ******** Undefeated teams not playing in week #8 ********
    NONE

    ******** Undefeated teams who lost in week #7 ********
    Oklahoma lost to Texas
    Stanford lost to Utah
    Michigan lost to Penn State

    ******** Teams who have (6) wins this week (#7) ********
    AAC 6-0 Louisville
    ACC 6-0 Clemson
    ACC 6-1 Virginia Tech
    B 12 6-0 Texas Tech
    B1G 6-0 Ohio State
    MAC 6-0 Northern Illinois
    MAC 6-1 Ball State
    PAC 6-0 Oregon
    SEC 6-0 Missouri
    SEC 6-0 Alabama
    SEC 6-1 Louisiana State

    • bullet says:

      There are only 15 once beaten teams as well, 13 in the P5 + Ball St. and UCF.

      • duffman says:

        Were you going to make the list?

        • bullet says:

          UCF 4-1
          Ball St. 6-1
          Maryland 5-1
          Virginia Tech 6-1
          Oklahoma 5-1
          Oklahoma St. 4-1
          Michigan 5-1
          Nebraska 5-1
          Michigan St. 5-1
          Oregon St. 5-1
          Stanford 5-1
          LSU 6-1
          South Carolina 5-1
          Auburn 5-1
          Texas A&M 5-1

          • bullet says:

            Most of these have little chance at the MNC as many have bad losses or, as in the case of Michigan, bad wins. Virginia Tech & Oklahoma might play themselves in. Stanford definitely has a shot. The SEC quad has a shot. UCF, Ball St., Maryland, Nebraska and Oregon St. have no chance unless everyone else loses at least two.

          • duffman says:

            UCF 4-1 = NO
            Ball St. 6-1 = NO
            Maryland 5-1 = NO
            Virginia Tech 6-1 = YES, if they run the table and get some breaks
            Oklahoma 5-1 = NO, even if they run the table, “Texas is down” mantra is an anchor
            Oklahoma St. 4-1 = NO, Mississippi State is going to hurt not help
            Michigan 5-1 = NO, even if they run the table because of Akron and Uconn
            Nebraska 5-1 = ??, must win out and UCLA must win out but lose PAC CCG
            Michigan St. 5-1 = NO, sad because if they win out they should get the love
            Oregon St. 5-1 = NO, because they are not Stanford or Oregon
            Stanford 5-1 = YES, because they are Stanford
            LSU 6-1= YES, because they are in the SEC and they are LSU
            South Carolina 5-1 = ??, if they win out they have the OBC as ace in hole
            Auburn 5-1 = ??, feels like a no but who knows if they win the rest + SEC CCG
            Texas A&M 5-1 = YES, SEC + JFF + TX = ratings magic

  41. duffman says:

    Results of week #7

    AP – Michigan and Northwestern dropped out / Auburn and Wisconsin moved in
    (8) SEC : #1 Alabama, #6 LSU, #7 TAMU, #11 USC, #14 MU, #15 UGA, #22 UF, #24 AU
    (4) PAC : #2 Oregon, #9 UCLA, #13 Stanford, #20 Washington
    (4) ACC : #3 Clemson, #5 Florida State, #10 Miami, #19 Virginia Tech
    (4) B12 : #12 Baylor, #16 Texas Tech, #18 Oklahoma, #21 Oklahoma State
    (2) B1G : #4 Ohio State, #25 Wisconsin
    (1) AAC : #8 Louisville
    (1) MWC : #17 Fresno State
    (1) MAC : #23 Northern Illinois
    Michigan (118) / Nebraska (94) / Michigan State (69) / Utah (47) / Notre Dame (39)

    USA – Northwestern dropped out / Missouri moved in
    (7) SEC : #1 Alabama, #7 Texas A&M, #8 LSU, #9 S Carolina, #14 MU, #16 UGA, #22 FL
    (4) PAC : #2 Oregon, #10 UCLA, #13 Stanford, #25 Washington
    (4) ACC : #4 Clemson, #5 Florida State, #11 Miami (FL), #20 Virginia Tech
    (4) B12 : #12 Baylor, #15 Texas Tech, #17 Oklahoma State, #18 Oklahoma
    (3) B1G : #3 Ohio State, #21 Nebraska, #24 Michigan
    (1) AAC : #6 Louisville
    (1) MWC : #19 Fresno State
    (1) MAC : #23 Northern Illinois
    Wisconsin (124) / Michigan State (83) / Auburn (67) / Notre Dame (60)

    .

    .

    B1G : B5 = 4-4 : NB5 = 0-0 : FCS = 0-0 : OFF = FOUR :: U = OHIO STATE
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (4-4) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) :::::::: FCS (DNP)
    AAC (DNP) : IND (DNP) : CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SunB (DNP)

    ACC : B5 = 4-4 : NB5 = 1-1 : FCS = 0-0 : OFF = FOUR :: U = CLEMSON/FSU/MIAMI
    ACC (4-4) : B1G (DNP) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) :::::::: FCS (DNP)
    AAC (DNP) : IND (1-1) : CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SunB (DNP)

    B 12 : B5 = 4-4 : NB5 = 0-0 : FCS = 0-0 : OFF = TWO :: U = BAYLOR / TEXAS TECH
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : B12 (4-4) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) :::::::: FCS (DNP)
    AAC (DNP) : IND (DNP) : CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SunB (DNP)

    PAC : B5 = 6-6 : NB5 = 0-0 : FCS = 0-0 : OFF = NONE :: U = OREGON / UCLA
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (6-6) : SEC (DNP) :::::::: FCS (DNP)
    AAC (DNP) : IND (DNP) : CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SunB (DNP)

    SEC : B5 = 5-5 : NB5 = 1-0 : FCS = 1-0 : OFF = TWO :: U = ALABAMA / MISSOURI
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (5-5) :::::::: FCS (1-0)
    AAC (DNP) : IND (DNP) : CUSA (DNP) : MAC (1-0) : MWC (DNP) : SunB (DNP)

    xxx : B5 = xxx : NB5 = xxx : FCS = xxx : OFF = xxx :: U = (x) teams
    ACC () : B1G () : B12 () : PAC () : SEC () :::::::: FCS ()
    AAC () : IND () : CUSA () : MAC () : MWC () : SunB ()

    .

    PAC was all conference games with nobody off and SEC had a FCS game but both scheduled well. Big 12 was in the middle while both the ACC and B1G had 4 idle teams this past week.
    .

    Observations :
    Wisconsin moved back in the polls – the good
    Michigan and Northwestern dropped out – the bad
    The beatings both Northwestern and Purdue took – the ugly

  42. Wainscott says:

    Btw, was anyone else concerned that when ESPN reported that Mizzou’s QB was injured, that he was going to be out “for the rest of the regular season?” Regular season??

    Part of college football’s charm is that the weekly games constitute both the regular season and the playoffs. The BCS era, for all its flaws and faults, created more interest in week 6 matchups than I fear a playoff will. Jockeying to stay in the top 4 will still be close, but with each expansion of the playoffs, these week 6 games will take on less meaning.

    Lets use a quick example from the NFL: The Steelers beat the Jets and are now 1-4. In CFB, they would have no chance to complete for the national title/top 4. But in the NFL, they can get win a few games, capture the wild card (like the ’93 Oilers), and have an equal shot at the title as, say, the Saints or Patriots.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Part of college football’s charm is that the weekly games constitute both the regular season and the playoffs. The BCS era, for all its flaws and faults, created more interest in week 6 matchups than I fear a playoff will. Jockeying to stay in the top 4 will still be close, but with each expansion of the playoffs, these week 6 games will take on less meaning.

      People keep saying that when other sports expand their post-seasons. I see no evidence of it. Did NCAA basketball lose interest when it expanded its post-season? Not as far as I can see.

      When four teams make the playoff, rather than two, there are more games throughout the season that can affect who those four will be. The regular season becomes more relevant, not less.

      I understand the purist view that in the current system, one loss eliminates you from championship contention, and wild-cards can’t qualify. Except that it’s a fantasy. How else do you explain the 2011 season, when Alabama (which didn’t even win its conference) got a second chance at an LSU team it had already lost to, while Oklahoma State went to a consolation bowl and didn’t get a chance to prove its worthiness on the field.

      Unlike most fans outside of SEC country, I didn’t disagree with Alabama’s selection that year. But don’t try to tell me it would have diminished the regular season, if Oklahoma State had been invited to the party along with them.

      Lets use a quick example from the NFL: The Steelers beat the Jets and are now 1-4. In CFB, they would have no chance to complete for the national title/top 4. But in the NFL, they can get win a few games, capture the wild card (like the ’93 Oilers), and have an equal shot at the title as, say, the Saints or Patriots.

      Wild cards do not have an “equal shot” at the title. The playoffs make their path more difficult: they don’t get a first-round bye, and they don’t get a home game. A few teams, over the years, have surmounted those obstacles, but they certainly don’t have the same shot. That’s one of the reasons that the regular-season games remain important, even for teams that have already clinched a playoff berth.

      There are occasions in the NFL where a team in the final week of the season has sewn up both its playoff berth and its seeding, and has literally nothing left to play for. But those occasions are vastly outnumbered by the teams who have more to play for, all year long, by virtue of not being eliminated so early in the season. In a system with smaller playoffs, teams are eliminated sooner, making the rest of their seasons basically meaningless exhibitions.

      I can understand the view that you’d just rather not have the possibility of wild cards winning it all. But to say that an expanded post-season diminishes the regular season is just mathematically wrong. The more you expand the post-season, the more the regular season games matter.

      • ccrider55 says:

        I don’t have much interest in basketball reg season. The move to even 32 diluted my interest. And having regular season conference place be almost irrelevant (thanks to conf tourney auto qualifiers)? Thirty something wild cards? The season is a beauty contest to gain selection rather than a competition to win a spot.

      • ccrider55 says:

        “In a system with smaller playoffs, teams are eliminated sooner, making the rest of their seasons basically meaningless exhibitions.”

        Yes. The eliminated teams shouldn’t have anything but pride and a spoiler roll to play for. I find a championship deminished if almost half the league is elligible. And almost meaningless if the last team in wins it. Really, what is the reg season value really? 80% to qualify for post season, 10% home field, and 10% more for a bye?

      • @Marc Shepherd – I generally agree with you, although college basketball probably isn’t the best example. That’s a sport where the postseason format has made the regular season largely inconsequential outside of being a seeding exercise.

        The NFL, though, has managed to create the right balance between keeping interest in the regular season very high and providing enough playoff spots where a good number of teams are still mathematically in contention late in the season, but not having too many playoff spots where the impact of each regular season game is diluted too much.

        I’m a firm believer that an 8-team playoff (5 power conference champs and 3 at-large bids) wouldn’t dilute interest in the regular season at all. It would turn most of the focus back to conference races as opposed to rankings and gets closer to the “determining it on the field” ideal that most of us want. That translates into many more games mattering during the course of the regular season (as opposed to the ones involving just the top 3 or 4 teams in a given week).

        Now, I do think going to a 16-team playoff would really dilute a lot of the power of the regular season, so there’s always a risk of over expansion. However, I think there’s a check against that in the desire of the power conferences to maintain control. As long as the 5 power conference champs are involved in the playoff, I don’t see them having a desire or much of a financial incentive to go beyond that (particularly since their own conference championship games will turn into guaranteed de facto playoff games that they get to control all of the revenue for).

        • bullet says:

          An 8 team playoff becomes a 12 or 13 team playoff. Although the 5 ccg losers aren’t necessarily eliminated (although you could set it up that way by selecting wildcards separate from the ccgs).

        • ccrider55 says:

          FtT:

          40% NFL qualifying for playoffs? 9-7, possibly 8-8 qualifying while better records don’t is not deminishing? I guess the citizens don’t care who the gladiators that entertain them are.

          • @ccrider55 – The point is that I (and I believe most of the American viewing public) still feel that every week in the NFL has a lot of impact. The fact that there are 12 playoff teams doesn’t take away from the fact that games in, say, week 6 of the NFL season matter both mathematically and psychologically.

            That’s why I don’t buy the argument that a limited expansion of the college football playoff (for me, a max of 8 teams) would detract from the interest in week 6 of the college football regular season. Yes, those instances where the planets align and you get #1 LSU vs. #2 Alabama or #1 Ohio State vs. #2 Michigan would no longer be “Games of the Century”, but I think we’re romanticizing those relatively rare highlights to the detriment of ignoring the 99% of other games in any given week. Plus, as Marc Shepherd noted, that LSU-Bama result didn’t end up being a de facto playoff game, anyway. College football already has a small sample size of games to work with in determining who is best, so it’s not really a “week to week” playoff when it’s often arbitrary how one 1-loss team gets ranked higher than another 1-loss team.

            Look – I’m not one of those guys that wants to see massive NCAA Tournament-style playoff for football. However, I do think an 8-team system that gives a automatic spot to all 5 power conference champs would ultimately be an improvement. I can’t see how having 8 teams out of 120-plus FBS schools (or even just looking at the universe of 65 power schools) in a playoff is going to dilute interest of the regular season for the general public. (I understand some old school fans may feel otherwise, but I think that’s a vocal minority.)

          • Wainscott says:

            @FrankTheTank:

            Giving an automatic spot to a power conference champ is much worse, as it presents the possibility that a 6-6 team that wins a division and upsets a top-tanked foe in a conference title game goes to the playoffs.

            Which year was it, for example, that Colorado won the B12 north at like 7-5? And didn’t UCLA win their division last year at 6-6? Why on earth should such mediocrity be rewarded with a potential playoff birth? It devalues the “regular” season at that point.

            The NFL Week 6 is much fun to watch, but utterly meaningless as far as the playoffs go. College week, 6, if a top ranked team loses, they might not get another shot at the title. Hence, the fun results from the heightened stakes.

          • @Wainscott – I’m just saying that there’s a balance. For the top 5 or 6 teams in any given week in college football, I agree there are massive stakes compared to the NFL. The issue is that there are low or no stakes for the other 100-plus FBS teams (at least at a national level), whereas in the NFL, the “stakes” are distributed further down the food chain. You don’t get many truly meaningless games until the last couple weeks of the season in the NFL.

            Is the NFL model necessarily better for determining the very best team? Maybe not. However, I do think it’s much better in terms of keeping the bulk of its fan bases (as opposed to a select handful) heavily invested in the regular season while not having an oversupply of postseason access (in the way that the NBA and NHL do). When every power conference division race matters on a national scale, that’s going to drive a lot more national interest for a lot more games. That’s going to matter quite a bit in the long-term as this Millenial generation and their kids will inevitably divide their time among even more entertainment options in the future than we have now. We already see attendance issues across much of college football. Fans are increasingly going to want to watch their teams have more than just a chance to get to a lower tier bowl game in order to invest their time and money.

            I know a lot of people point to the weak Pac-12 South and Big Ten Leaders division champs last year, but that was the byproduct of once-in-a-generation occurrence of multiple high level teams not being eligible for bowls. Even then, we don’t seem to get bothered by the notion of a lower record team getting into the postseason in any other sport as long as they actually clinched a championship (midmajor conference tournaments in basketball, winning bad divisions like the NFC East in the NFL this year, etc.), which is at least determined on-the-field/court as opposed to a third party ranking system that the teams involved have little control over.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Giving an automatic spot to a power conference champ is much worse, as it presents the possibility that a 6-6 team that wins a division and upsets a top-tanked foe in a conference title game goes to the playoffs.

            I entirely agree with you: I am not a fan of auto-bids for football. In an 8-team playoff, in most years the Big Ten champion will make it to the dance; but why a guarantee? I say, make them prove it.

            And yet, some people (including @ccrider55) believe precisely the opposite: that it devalues the playoff, when qualifying is not dependent on first winning your conference. I believe @ccrider55 said in another post that he thinks the new playoff is a misnomer: in his view, it ain’t a playoff if conference champs don’t get autobids.

            This, I think, is why you have to look at objective criteria, rather than one’s personal, abstract, tradition-based preference for how a national champion ought to be decided. You can read tradition any way you want, and just about every tradition was at some point new.

            Years ago, the polls used to decide the national champion before the bowls. And so, oddly enough, the games that now determine the championship were once considered meaningless exhibitions, having nothing to do with it at all! That was long ago, but I suspect most here recall the various changes to the way the national champion was decided, including multiple changes to the BCS and its predecessor, the Bowl Alliance, each being (in some sense) the abandonment of an older “tradition” in favor of another.

            The reality is, in terms of measurable fan interest, expanding the post-season generally does not make the regular season less meaningful, but rather the opposite. It’s just mathematically true, to the point of obviousness, that when more teams qualify, more of the games have national championship implications.

            You’re welcome not to like it personally, but it has been demonstrated over and over again that most of the fans do not react that way.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “Plus, as Marc Shepherd noted, that LSU-Bama result didn’t end up being a de facto playoff game, ”

            Because the BCS isn’t a playoff. It’s a selection – an invitational. The reg season derives much of its meaning because it serves as the elimination rounds.

            We would/will be in an 8-10 team playoff next year if the selection process eliminates all but conference champs. Here’s to hoping the committe applies the lesson of the Ala/LSU non-championship (in many eyes).

            I am not a staunch opponent of an actual playoff, but I resent the usurping of the Rose and other major bowls (and the direct qualification/elimination through conf play).

          • @ccrider55 – If I had my way, the bowls wouldn’t be usurped. The 8-team playoff would look like this:

            Rose Bowl: Big Ten champ vs. Pac-12 champ

            Sugar Bowl: SEC champ vs. at-large

            Orange/Peach: ACC champ vs. at-large

            Cotton/Fiesta: Big 12 champ vs. at-large

            That’s actually more of a throwback to how the bowls used to be while still advancing the notion of an expanded playoff. Call me crazy, but I find that lineup to be a more compelling set of games on and around New Years Day compared to the new CFP system while providing more of the traditional matchups. The practical business case for the power conferences is also there, as the bowls are the means through which they can continue to control the playoff. That’s a direct financial and control interest for the power conferences for the playoff to stop at 8 (as opposed to going to 16 and beyond as some fans fear).

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Because the BCS isn’t a playoff. It’s a selection – an invitational. The reg season derives much of its meaning because it serves as the elimination rounds.

            Well, whatever term you use for it, the participants are being decided by votes and computers, rather than on the field. College Football is the only sport I can think of that does so.

            (Other sports have selection committees, but they invite enough participants that anyone with a credible argument for being there, IS there.)

            We would/will be in an 8-10 team playoff next year if the selection process eliminates all but conference champs. Here’s to hoping the committee applies the lesson of the Ala/LSU non-championship (in many eyes).

            That ship has sailed, and not to the port you desire. There is no such rule, and there is no way there could be, given that there are more leagues than playoff slots, and the system needs to accommodate independents who don’t even have any conference championship to win.

            It would be a bizarro world where Wisconsin last year, a very mediocre Big Ten champion who won a weak league with a weak schedule, was seeded above the SEC #2. I don’t think you could find very many people who’d sign up for that result.

          • bullet says:

            NFL planning on going to 14. Its starting to look more like basketball and hockey.

            When you have a playoff you have to balance two major things (other than all the financial impacts): 1) You don’t want it so big it makes it hard for the best team to win because they might have an off day; and 2) You don’t want to exclude anyone who might be the best team. That’s why I think 8 to 12 is a good number for college football. With 4, sometimes you might leave out the best team. With 8 and autobids for the major conferences, you have all the teams that have earned their way in and room for 3 from minor conferences or who were otherwise very good and may have gotten knocked out by a tie-break or only lost on the road in overtime to someone in the tourney.

            From the financial side, I’m not convinced that 16 necessarily devalues the regular season, but it is definitely close to that point. 24 like in FCS definitely would. It would also depend on how you select the teams. 16 with 10 conference champs gives you 6 pretty good wildcards even though some of the conference champs won’t be that great. 16 with 5-6 conference champs and you start getting some 3 loss wildcards who are 3rd or 4th or 5th best in their own conference, making it a little too easy to get in and the regular season less relevant.

          • bullet says:

            @marc
            The bowls really were an exhibition is the past. Occasionally you would have one that was a defacto playoff. But mostly it was a reward to a good season and a nice trip. Many teams still approach it that way. IMO polls give way too much emphasis to bowl results.

          • Brian says:

            Frank the Tank,

            “The point is that I (and I believe most of the American viewing public) still feel that every week in the NFL has a lot of impact. The fact that there are 12 playoff teams doesn’t take away from the fact that games in, say, week 6 of the NFL season matter both mathematically and psychologically.”

            What you need to remember is that the CFB and NFL fan bases are not the same. There is overlap, but even those who like both tend to favor one over the other. Many CFB fans don’t like the NFL precisely because of it’s postseason. Why watch during the season when 9-7 has a decent shot at the title? Those losses meant next to nothing.

            Of course NFL fans would be fine with CFB expanding their playoff. The CFB fans that don’t like the NFL might not be so keen on the idea.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Brian: I agree with you that the NFL and CFB fan bases are different sets of people.

            But I cannot imagine that you think it’s a terrific system to have a couple of polls and a bunch of computers decide which two teams get the chance to play for a national championship.

          • Brian says:

            Frank the Tank,

            “I’m just saying that there’s a balance. For the top 5 or 6 teams in any given week in college football, I agree there are massive stakes compared to the NFL. The issue is that there are low or no stakes for the other 100-plus FBS teams (at least at a national level),”

            I disagree. Many of those teams are playing for bowl eligibility, rivalries, or the chance to spoil someone else’s season. You may not care about the lesser bowls but they are important to the players.

            “You don’t get many truly meaningless games until the last couple weeks of the season in the NFL.”

            Except for all those losses that don’t knock teams out of the playoffs, you mean?

            “Is the NFL model necessarily better for determining the very best team? Maybe not.”

            There’s no maybe about it. The NFL doesn’t even try to find the best team. They find a tournament champion. Otherwise a 9-7 Giants team wouldn’t get to play the 16-0 Patriots again for the title.

            “However, I do think it’s much better in terms of keeping the bulk of its fan bases (as opposed to a select handful) heavily invested in the regular season while not having an oversupply of postseason access (in the way that the NBA and NHL do).”

            What works for a league of 32 teams of fairly similar talent levels doesn’t necessarily work for 10 conferences plus independents that total to 125 teams of widely varying talent levels.

            “When every power conference division race matters on a national scale, that’s going to drive a lot more national interest for a lot more games.”

            What’s good for casual fans is rarely good for true fans. This is just like NASCAR going national to chase more total fans while losing a bunch of diehards. It works great for the bottom line unless the casual fans tire of it, because the diehards are still angry.

            “We already see attendance issues across much of college football.”

            Skyrocketing ticket prices have a lot to do with that.

            “I know a lot of people point to the weak Pac-12 South and Big Ten Leaders division champs last year, but that was the byproduct of once-in-a-generation occurrence of multiple high level teams not being eligible for bowls.”

            Was it? It’s happened 50% of the time for the B10 and P12.

            The B12 had 3 unranked teams in their 15 CCG. They all at least tied for best record in their division, but still weren’t impressive.

            1996 7-4 (6-2) UT upset #3 NE
            2004 7-4 (4-4) CO lost to #2 OU
            2005 7-4 (5-3) CO lost to #2 UT

            3 more were ranked outside the top 15:

            2006 9-3 (6-2) #18 NE lost to #10 OU
            2008 9-3 (5-3) #19 MO lost to #4 OU
            2009 9-3 (6-2) #21 NE lost to #3 UT

            The ACC was even worse. They’ve had 3 unranked teams in 8 games, plus 6 more ranked outside the top 15.

            2005 7-4 (5-3) #23 FSU won
            2006 10-2 (6-2) #16 WF beat 9-3 (7-1) #22 GT
            2008 8-4 (5-3) VT beat 9-3 (5-3) #17 BC
            2009 8-4 (6-2) Clemson lost to #10 GT
            2010 9-3 (6-2) #20 FSU lost to #11 VT
            2011 9-3 (6-2) #21 Clemson won
            2012 6-6 (5-3) GT lost to #12 FSU

            No 3 loss team should even have a chance to be in the playoff, but your autobid plan would do that somewhat regularly based on CCG history.

            “Even then, we don’t seem to get bothered by the notion of a lower record team getting into the postseason in any other sport as long as they actually clinched a championship”

            Who is this “we” you are talking about. Lots of people take issue with letting bad teams that win something into the playoffs at the expense of much better teams.

            “midmajor conference tournaments in basketball”

            Most people hate tournament winners getting in, they just don’t get that upset because they aren’t knocking out a good team.

            “winning bad divisions like the NFC East in the NFL this year”

            I’ve heard plenty of NFL fans advocate for taking the top 6 teams by record rather than letting an 8-8 (or even worse, 7-9) division champ in.

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “I entirely agree with you: I am not a fan of auto-bids for football. In an 8-team playoff, in most years the Big Ten champion will make it to the dance; but why a guarantee? I say, make them prove it.”

            The people that want an autobid generally don’t trust “the system” to be fair, so they want to avoid anyone getting screwed over by bias. They also tend to believe that winning a bad conference is still a better qualification than being runner up in a great one. If you aren’t the best in your conference, how can you be the best in the nation?

            “This, I think, is why you have to look at objective criteria,”

            Here’s the problem. What objective criteria can you get everyone to agree upon? You just mocked ccrider55 for choosing “conference champs” as his objective criteria, and those are at least decided on the field. You think people will agree to trust computer rankings instead?

            “The reality is, in terms of measurable fan interest, expanding the post-season generally does not make the regular season less meaningful, but rather the opposite.”

            Yes it does, but most true fans will watch anyway. Casual fans only ever watched the big games anyway, so nothing changes for them.

            “It’s just mathematically true, to the point of obviousness, that when more teams qualify, more of the games have national championship implications.”

            Yes, but equally true is that the implications of each game are diminished by the increased size of the playoff. Now it’s the second or third loss that’s huge rather than the first one.

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “Well, whatever term you use for it, the participants are being decided by votes and computers, rather than on the field. College Football is the only sport I can think of that does so.

            (Other sports have selection committees, but they invite enough participants that anyone with a credible argument for being there, IS there.)”

            How many sports have a 12 game season and can only be played head to head and weekly? It’s apples and oranges to compare different sports because they are all so different. CFB is limited by only being able to play 2 teams at a time (many sports can have 8-100+ competing at once), once per week (most sports can play several times per week), with a limited season length (most sports play a lot more times). On top of that, the NFL has 1/4 the number of teams and they are all much more equal than the I-A schools are. There is no reason to believe that the best solution for another sport is also the best solution for CFB.

            “There is no such rule, and there is no way there could be, given that there are more leagues than playoff slots, and the system needs to accommodate independents who don’t even have any conference championship to win.”

            He didn’t say there was, he merely hoped the committee would basically impose a high standard on any runner up they let into the top 4 (as in, never do it).

            “It would be a bizarro world where Wisconsin last year, a very mediocre Big Ten champion who won a weak league with a weak schedule, was seeded above the SEC #2.”

            Unless, you know, you valued being the best in your subset as a qualification for being the best in the superset.

            “I don’t think you could find very many people who’d sign up for that result.”

            Actually, I think previous discussions of this issue has shown a decently large minority that feel that way. Some opted to stick to 4 and take the best 4 champs or independents rather than going to 8 and letting all 5 AQ champs in just to avoid the WI scenario you described. On the other hand, I could point out that said mediocre team gave Stanford a very tough game in the Rose Bowl so perhaps they weren’t all that mediocre.

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “NFL planning on going to 14. Its starting to look more like basketball and hockey.”

            What a shock to see the NFL doing a money grab.

            “When you have a playoff you have to balance two major things (other than all the financial impacts): 1) You don’t want it so big it makes it hard for the best team to win because they might have an off day; and 2) You don’t want to exclude anyone who might be the best team.”

            I agree. Only the best should get in. That’s why MLB, NBA and NHL should only have the finals. They have 162 or 82 games to decide the best team in each conference. The runner ups had their shot already. The NFL can justify at least having semifinals, maybe even an elite 8. There is still no need for runners up, though.

            CFB is in a hard place because the number of teams and the short season say they could have a large playoff, but the playoff length is actually limited by school factors plus, unlike in the pros, we know that most of the schools never had a shot of being the best.

            “That’s why I think 8 to 12 is a good number for college football. With 4, sometimes you might leave out the best team.”

            How often have 5 or more teams all had valid arguments for being the best team in the country? You lose a game, your argument goes away. You win a crappy conference without playing a tough OOC schedule, you lose my sympathy.

            “With 8 and autobids for the major conferences, you have all the teams that have earned their way in and room for 3 from minor conferences or who were otherwise very good and may have gotten knocked out by a tie-break or only lost on the road in overtime to someone in the tourney.”

            I will never understand how a runner up has a valid claim to be #1. If you said 8 to take the 8 best independents or conference champs, at least I could understand your reasoning. I’ve never seen a #8 team that deserved to be #1, though.

            I still believe that the old system was better than any playoff CFB will ever come up with. Play the games and let the fans sort it out.

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “But I cannot imagine that you think it’s a terrific system to have a couple of polls and a bunch of computers decide which two teams get the chance to play for a national championship.”

            No, I’m not a huge BCS advocate. Personally, I’d go back to the old system of letting the fans argue it out. But if you must do it, then I’d rather the NCAA spend $10M financing research into the most valid ways to rank CFB teams based on the latest math and stats knowledge. I believe the result will be that there is no optimum way to rank teams, but many solid ways. Then put together several computer systems that vary widely and use them (all code open to the public, including the input data sets so people can check them, and no limitations on what they can consider). Drop the highest and lowest ranking for each school and average the others. No bias, just pure objective rankings.

            I think the real issue is that people fundamentally disagree on what describes the “best” team. Is it the one that accomplishes the most or the one that best passes the eye test or something else? If we don’t agree on that, why should we agree on the champ?

          • ccrider55 says:

            Marc:

            “That ship has sailed, and not to the port you desire.”

            Perhaps you misunderstand what I meant. A defacto 8 to 10 team playoff is here with CCG’s as the qtr finals (B12 champ assumes a qtr bye if a CFP participant) simply by selecting conf champs (or independents).

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “Well, whatever term you use for it, the participants are being decided by votes and computers, rather than on the field. College Football is the only sport I can think of that does so.

            How many sports have a 12 game season and can only be played head to head and weekly? It’s apples and oranges to compare different sports because they are all so different.

            But as you know, the other divisions of college football (below FBS) have a playoff, and have had for many years, so the lack of one is obviously not an intrinsic limitation of the sport.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Haven’t the majors always had a playoff (aka the regular season) that led to their reward (Rose, Orange, Sugar, Cotton, etc)? Which was the more interesting, followed, valuable?

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “But as you know, the other divisions of college football (below FBS) have a playoff, and have had for many years, so the lack of one is obviously not an intrinsic limitation of the sport.”

            The financial disparity between schools in I-AA (and below) is much less than in I-A. I-AA teams can’t afford as many intersectional OOC games. I-AA teams play a shorter season, leaving even more questions about which team is best. The money involved is smaller so the NCAA runs their posteseason. There are autobids at the lower levels. There are no bowls. The playoffs use home fields in the lower levels. In other words, almost everything is different.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Haven’t the majors always had a playoff (aka the regular season) that led to their reward (Rose, Orange, Sugar, Cotton, etc)? Which was the more interesting, followed, valuable?

            I don’t want to go dictionary on you, but whatever the merits of that system, I’d challenge you to find very many people who would’ve called it a “playoff” by any known definition.

            But even that system changed many, many times over the decades. It was by no means static. If the commissioners and ADs have proven anything, they know how to count money and viewers. It would be very surprising if you could demonstrate that every time they changed it, they made it less valuable and less followed.

            I do realize that VERY recently (like, last year or two), TV ratings and attendance have gone down. I am quite sure that if that condition endures, they’ll change it again. (Well, they’ll probably change it again no matter what.)

          • ccrider55 says:

            “I don’t want to go dictionary on you, but whatever the merits of that system, I’d challenge you to find very many people who would’ve called it a “playoff” by any known definition.”

            Please do.

            A)The B1G and PAC both spent a long time playing seasons with only the champion going to the Rose (except when that team declined the honor).
            B) A poll based system selects participants, on field results being informative…but not determinative.

            In which system have you actually played off against the competition?

      • Wainscott says:

        @MarcShepard: Yes, I suppose the more you expand the playoffs, the more the regular season games matter, but for the wrong reasons. The regular season should not be a mere seeding exercise for the playoffs. There should be a more definite, concrete reward for success in the regular season than a first round bye or an extra home game–like a legitimate shot at the playoffs.

        My ideal was how MLB used to do it, before the wild card round, where the two division winners faced off in the LCS, and the winner went to the World Series (I would have done away with the divisions, and just had the top 2 in the League play in the LCS, but anyways).

        The NFL is also decent, in that 12/32 makes the post season. But teams like the Giants a few years ago catching fire at the right time and winning the Super Bowl shows that the regular season lacks as much value as it did before.

        I understand the financial windfall that comes from expanding playoffs, which is why I am concerned that college adopted it in the first place. We all know intuitively that a 4 team playoff will expend to 16 eventually, ruining CFB’s uniqueness in the process. Just because something would make more money doesn’t make it good for the game.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          The regular season should not be a mere seeding exercise for the playoffs.

          In college, even a 16-team playoff (which has practically zero chance of happening in our lifetimes) would eliminate roughly 85% of the teams. So obviously, for the overwhelming majority of them, the issue would not be seeding, but the far more substantial question of whether they get in at all.

          My ideal was how MLB used to do it, before the wild card round, where the two division winners faced off in the LCS, and the winner went to the World Series.

          I am old enough to remember the days when baseball traditionalists considered that system an abomination. The original LCS format took a lot of getting used to, for people who grew up under old system of sending the league’s best overall team directly into the World Series.

          It just goes to show that if tradition is your lodestar, all it really means is that you prefer what you grew up with, and nothing would ever change.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Marc Shepard:

            “In college, even a 16-team playoff (which has practically zero chance of happening in our lifetimes) would eliminate roughly 85% of the teams. So obviously, for the overwhelming majority of them, the issue would not be seeding, but the far more substantial question of whether they get in at all.”

            That’s true, but misses my point. Its not that 85% of the teams are eliminated, its that a 14th ranked 9-3 team is in the same playoff structure, and has the same shot to win, as a 12-0 or 13-0 number 1 or 2 seed. That regular season should not come down to jockeying to be in the top 16, or even a top 8.

            The number 8 team in the land should not have a shot at the national title. That is, in essence, my opposition to the potential 8-team playoff.

            By giving said #8 team a shot, the sequence of events (read; regular season) that made them #8, and not #1 or #4, is thereby devalued, because as long as they are in the playoffs, how they got there loses meaning.

            Further, in college, where rivalry games are played in the last game before conference title games, top-ranked teams will have a disincentive to play their best players or to win, knowing that they are secure. A #1 ranked Alabama playing a 5-6 Auburn would have no incentive to win the Iron Bowl, or to risk having key players get hurt a week before the SEC title game. Without a playoff, they have to win. Even in a 4 team playoff, they have to win. That’s the difference, especially when the Colts sat players for the last few weeks a few years back to rest up for the playoffs. I don’t want Alabama resting players vs. Auburn, or players sitting out OSU- Michigan. Those games differentiate college from the pros, and such charm should not be lost.

            As for the MLB playoffs, I definitely agree about people liking the system they grew up with, but I happen to feel that system worked best because it balances fan excitement with rewarding regular season achievement. I also think that since there is a wild card, the new play-in game for the WC is far more equitable, as it gives incentives and tangible rewards to division winners.

          • bullet says:

            I still think its an abomination that a #9 team in a college basketball conference who has failed to win in the regular season and failed to win in a conference tournament gets another chance in the NCAA.

      • Brian says:

        Marc Shepherd,

        “People keep saying that when other sports expand their post-seasons. I see no evidence of it. Did NCAA basketball lose interest when it expanded its post-season?”

        From 64 to 68? No, because that was a trivial change. From 8 to 16 to 24ish to 32 to 48 to 64? Yes. A lot more people used to care about the regular season back when the games mattered. When only the conference champ could make the tournament, every regular season game was vital. Now, the tournament is a bigger deal but most “fans” ignore college hoops until March.

        “When four teams make the playoff, rather than two, there are more games throughout the season that can affect who those four will be. The regular season becomes more relevant, not less.”

        You state this like fact when it’s actually opinion. Some people lose interest when even a #1 vs #2 game actually doesn’t matter. They’ll just wait until January to start watching. Others will stay interested longer because their team still has a chance. The bigger of an event you make the postseason, the less the regular season matters and more fans will just wait until the postseason to watch.

        “How else do you explain the 2011 season”

        Bribes.

        “But don’t try to tell me it would have diminished the regular season, if Oklahoma State had been invited to the party along with them.”

        How important would the first AL/LSU game have been if we all knew both would make the playoff (or in that case, the NCG)?

        “Lets use a quick example from the NFL: The Steelers beat the Jets and are now 1-4. In CFB, they would have no chance to complete for the national title/top 4. But in the NFL, they can get win a few games, capture the wild card (like the ’93 Oilers), and have an equal shot at the title as, say, the Saints or Patriots.”

        You say that like it’s a good thing.

        “But to say that an expanded post-season diminishes the regular season is just mathematically wrong.”

        You’re assuming math is applicable to calculate whether or not the season is diminished. I don’t think it can because it’s an intangible quality.

        “The more you expand the post-season, the more the regular season games matter.”

        No. More games might matter, but they all matter less than they used to matter.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          “When four teams make the playoff, rather than two, there are more games throughout the season that can affect who those four will be. The regular season becomes more relevant, not less.”

          You state this like fact when it’s actually opinion.

          As I interpret your post (further down), you aren’t disputing that I’m mathematically right. You’re arguing that the regular season is diminished in some abstract way. In that sense, I agree that my view is just opinion, and so is yours. But among factors that can be measured, is there any evidence? For instance, did college basketball attendance and ratings go down when they expanded the tournament? Those, at least, are things we can quantify.

          Otherwise, “diminishing the regular season” is a standardless concept, capable of infinite manipulation according to whatever version of “tradition” one happens to like.

          Some people lose interest when even a #1 vs #2 game actually doesn’t matter.

          It’s hard to come up with many cases where such a game truly wouldn’t have mattered, even assuming you can demonstrate the dubious proposition that a significant number of people actually lost interest.

          How important would the first AL/LSU game have been if we all knew both would make the playoff (or in that case, the NCG)?

          At the time it was played, no one knew that. Whether or not you approve of the re-match, other events had to happen in the ensuing weeks, for Alabama to scratch its way back to #2. At the time, I think everyone believed it was an elimination game.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “#2. At the time, I think everyone believed it was an elimination game.”

            You make our case. Now everyone knows it won’t be.

          • vp19 says:

            To me, eight teams is the ideal balance — especially if all five power conferences get automatic bids, and one spot is reserved for a non-power 5 team. It also lessens the influence of “brand names” on the process without too much watering down, so a Oklahoma State or Kansas State that wins its conference title wouldn’t be shafted because it wasn’t a traditional “king.”

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “As I interpret your post (further down), you aren’t disputing that I’m mathematically right.”

            I’m disputing your basic statement that the regular season matters more with an expanded playoff. I don’t believe you can measure exactly how much the season matters in the first place because that’s intangible. But I believe your statement would be true if you said that more regular season games will matter for the playoff if the playoff is bigger (there are other ways games can matter, but I don’t think you’re talking about those definitions of matter). My counter point is that while that’s true, each one of those games individually will matter less than they used to when the playoff was smaller.

            “You’re arguing that the regular season is diminished in some abstract way.”

            You’re arguing that it gains value in some abstract way.

            “But among factors that can be measured, is there any evidence?”

            You weren’t talking about any such factors.

            “For instance, did college basketball attendance and ratings go down when they expanded the tournament? Those, at least, are things we can quantify.”

            MBB ratings are down from what they used to be, and the tournament expanded to 64 a while ago. I’d argue there is some causation there, but I can’t prove it.

            “It’s hard to come up with many cases where such a game truly wouldn’t have mattered, even assuming you can demonstrate the dubious proposition that a significant number of people actually lost interest.”

            In this world of CFB, what loser of a #1 vs #2 game is going to miss the playoff without losing a second game? Heck, AL made it to the BCS NCG and MI almost did.

            The ratings were way down for the AL/LSU NCG because a lot of people weren’t interested. If people knew in advance that the loser of the first game would make the playoff anyway, how many of them would have still watched?

            “At the time it was played, no one knew that.”

            Because the BCS only takes 2 teams, and even then the possibility was being discussed. If the BCS took 4 teams, nobody would have doubted that the loser would have been #4 at worst that year.

            “At the time, I think everyone believed it was an elimination game.”

            But now, we’ll all know it won’t be. That’s the point.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “#2. At the time, I think everyone believed it was an elimination game.”

            You make our case. Now everyone knows it won’t be.

            The fact that the first LSU vs. Alabama was NOT an elimination game, despite outward appearances, just goes to show that the system the playoff is meant to replace is not the greatest.

            You can like the playoff, or not like it, but I think the games that “everyone knows” are meaningless will be comparatively rare, in relation to the many more games that have added meaning.

            Whether you like the NFL or not, meaningless games involving contenders are not the norm. Of course, there are plenty of meaningless games where both sides have already been eliminated, and no one has proposed to change that.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “Whether you like the NFL or not, meaningless games involving contenders are not the norm.”

            Unless you equate playoff positioning to playoff inclusion they certainly are for a significant number of the top teams at the end of every reg season.

            “The fact that the first LSU vs. Alabama was NOT an elimination game, despite outward appearances, just goes to show that the system the playoff is meant to replace is not the greatest.”

            And the response it to codify one of the former system’s failing?

          • bullet says:

            It should have been an elimination game. My philosophy is that it should be the most “deserving” teams. With a two team playoff, Alabama had no business in the playoff. They had their shot and lost at home. There was no objective way to tell who was better, Oklahoma St. or Alabama, but Oklahoma St. won when they needed to. Alabama lost when they needed to win. That was the bottom line.

            I could be for a champs only if you had clear champs like baseball. But you don’t have 162 games or playoff games to break ties. You have to use tiebreaks. And sometimes you get 3 way ties which are really messy like the Big 12 in 2008. And had Arkansas upset LSU in the last game of the season in 2011, we would have had a 3 way tie with Arkansas, LSU and Alabama that would have been even messier.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Bullet:

            I agree, but suggest that a three way tie indicates perhaps all three didn’t grab the brass ring when presented. I’m not saying they all should be eliminated. But to those outside the affected schools does it really matter who the representive is? Conferences set the criteria to break ties and they should live with it, or change it preseason.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            [AL/LSU] should have been an elimination game. My philosophy is that it should be the most “deserving” teams. With a two team playoff, Alabama had no business in the playoff.

            I can respect that viewpoint. But the thing is, the BCS had multiple shots at coming up with the “most deserving” formula. It kept failing, and they kept tweaking it. Then it failed again. And they tweaked it again. Failed again. Tweaked again.

            If you’d like, they could put in yet another tweak to disallow re-matches. And then, you know what? Some other condition no one had thought of would happen, and it would still fail.

            I could be for a champs only if you had clear champs like baseball. But you don’t have 162 games or playoff games to break ties. You have to use tiebreaks. And sometimes you get 3 way ties which are really messy like the Big 12 in 2008.

            That’s not even the messiest problem. The problem is that there are five “power” leagues, plus independents, and occasionally a team from outside the P5 that puts up a credible claim. Even if you believe that non-champs are de facto unworthy, you’ve still got a formula, a committee, a poll, or all three, deciding amongst the various champs.

            I agree, but suggest that a three way tie indicates perhaps all three didn’t grab the brass ring when presented. I’m not saying they all should be eliminated. But to those outside the affected schools does it really matter who the representive is? Conferences set the criteria to break ties and they should live with it, or change it preseason.

            I’d say the outrage over the AL/LSU re-match shows you’re mistaken. People want a game that makes sense to them from a “sporting” point of view (however they define that). Otherwise, everyone would have been happy with AL/LSU, since those two teams qualified under the agreed rules.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “People want a game that makes sense to them from a “sporting” point of view (however they define that). Otherwise, everyone would have been happy with AL/LSU, since those two teams qualified under the agreed rules.”ee

            Ala/LSU didn’t tie for SEC title, or even division champ.
            Less than one in ten people I know and have talked to about it felt that was the right matchup, at the time and since.

            We all know the rules were/are created as a set of compromises. It’s difficult to do what is best for the game when that conflicts with powerful parochial and financial interests.

        • bamatab says:

          Ok, I’m going to make this post, but I am obviously bias with this subject so take it for what it’s worth.

          But, IMO, to say that the regular season Bama/LSU game should’ve been an elimination game, yet the Ok St/ISU game shouldn’t have been is crazy. Both Bama and OSU (and Stanford btw) lost 1 game during the regular season. Bama not only lost to a higher ranked team, but Bama out played #1 ranked LSU for 4 quarters (but not in overtime) and lead in most statistical categories (including time of possession, 1st downs, yards, penalties, and 3rd down conversions). Unfortunately we also lead in missed FGs which lost us the game. OSU lost to a mediocre (at best) ISU team.

          At the time of the game, the Bama/LSU game was a huge game with a lot at stake. That loss took Bama out of the driver’s seat for the BCSCG, and put Ok St and Stanford in it. It just so happened that both OSU and Stanford ended up losing to lesser ranked teams (ISU and Utah), which put Bama back in the BCSCG.

          In the end, OSU and Stanford lost to teams that they should’ve beaten fairly easily. To say that Bama shouldn’t have gotten in for losing to a far superior team than either of them is, IMO of course, ludicrous. Bama ended up proving that they were the better team in the end, and IMO, proved that they should’ve been in the BCSCG.

          • ccrider55 says:

            And OkSU lost barely a day after the tragedy that took a number of Cowboy’s way before their time. Point is we don’t need to engage in comparisons. Can we know Ala. was better than OkSU? Can we know the SEC has eight of the top five? We can guess and argue. But we can know who is conference champion.

            bamatab, I’m not saying they weren’t (or were) the second best (before the NCG). I’m only saying you’re now 1-1 with LSU that year and unless we adopt a best of three tiebreaker that game was a waste. Again, no disrespect but I only watched short parts of it. I just didn’t think they deserved a rematch (a problem I have with CCG’s but am not sure there is a practical solution). I felt like someone from grade school had called “do over.”

          • This whole discussion shows the issue when there are multiple teams with a legitimate claim to be playing for the national title.

            From my vantage point, Alabama making it to the title game in 2011 was completely justifiable. Remember that LSU was the highest rated team statistically in the history of the BCS. So, in a very real sense, Alabama had the “best loss” of any 1-loss team in BCS history.

            I certainly sympathize with giving extra weight to conference championships, which is why I’d want to see auto-bids for the conference champs in an 8-team playoff. However, in a 2 or 4-team format, it’s very difficult to have that restriction. Should 2012 Notre Dame get an advantage over 2011 Alabama simply because it’s independent? ND inherently can’t be a conference champ, and we all know it’s not feasible to have a system that locks them out (as much as some fans might want to). It’s not an accident that the notion of a conference championship requirement has been rejected continuously over the past 15 years.

          • Brian says:

            That would make perfect sense except OkSU wouldn’t have been facing the team that beat them in the NCG. We already saw LSU/AL. AL had a chance and blew it. With LSU in as #1, everyone they already beat should be eliminated from consideration. In a season with so few games, playing a rematch is an incredible waste.

            The same issue bugs me with the playoff. Why should a runner up get a second bite at the apple? Let someone else get a chance instead.

          • bamatab says:

            “That would make perfect sense except OkSU wouldn’t have been facing the team that beat them in the NCG. We already saw LSU/AL”

            If OSU had been facing the team that beat them, they would’ve been facing a 6-7 team. Like Frank said, Bama had the more impressive loss (if there us such a thing).

            The BCS system is setup to pit #1 vs #2. Bama and OSU had the exact same record (OSU didn’t play in a conference championship game). The only thing that could be compared in a real, on the field, manner was there loses, and there loses were not even close to being equal.

          • ccrider55 says:

            FtT:

            I understand and agree that Ala. appeared the probable best contender. But as Brian says they already had their shot. How many other sports/championships have actually had the best game in the semi, or even qtrs. Are we trying to decide the best game, or who still has legitimate claim to play for the championship?

            PS: if an eight team “playoff” arrives conference mates (if selected) should play first round. Perhaps 18-20 team conferences would alleviate this as CCG could be first round, and there would be very few cross division games. Basically adopting conf champs only from 9-10 team conferences.

          • Brian says:

            bamatab,

            “If OSU had been facing the team that beat them, they would’ve been facing a 6-7 team.”

            I don’t care. LSU already beat AL. That eliminates AL as an option for me. There just aren’t enough CFB games to allow postseason rematches when major conferences rarely play each other. The next team up was OkSU.

            It’s the same reason MI didn’t deserve a rematch in 2006.

            “Like Frank said, Bama had the more impressive loss (if there us such a thing).”

            They lost to the best team, yes, but in one of the ugliest displays of CFB ever. Offense is part of the game, too.

            “The BCS system is setup to pit #1 vs #2.”

            And a good system would’ve put OkSU #2.

            “The only thing that could be compared in a real, on the field, manner was there loses, and there loses were not even close to being equal.”

            No, there were also their wins and the circumstances of those losses. OkSU beat 4 ranked teams, AL was 3-1. OkSU played 10 AQ teams and 2 non-AQs, AL played 9 AQs, 2 non-AQs and 1 I-AA. In other words, OkSU played a tougher schedule. OkSU lost on the road after a tragedy on a short week (Friday game) by a missed FG that may have actually been good against a mediocre team, while AL lost at home after a bye week to prepare for a great team.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            …if an eight team “playoff” arrives conference mates (if selected) should play first round. Perhaps 18-20 team conferences would alleviate this as CCG could be first round, and there would be very few cross division games. Basically adopting conf champs only from 9-10 team conferences.

            It is exceedingly unlikely that the schools will conveniently organize into precisely four (or eight) eligible conferences, with no independents. That’s the only way “conf champs only” could work, even assuming we wanted that.

            So the far more likely scenario in an 8-team playoff is that #2′s sometimes qualify. In that case, it’s tough to imagine why anyone would want to schedule them against their conference mate in the first round, unless they hadn’t played before and it was the logical seeding. They’d probably seed them 1-8 on competitive merit, and then re-jigger the seeding (if need be) to avoid re-matches.

            (As FTT noted, the league commissioners were opposed to limiting it to conference champions, and I don’t see that changing. I think Jim Delany tried to push that, as his weaker league would have been the beneficiary. I can see why that didn’t get much traction.)

          • bullet says:

            “I don’t care. LSU already beat AL. That eliminates AL as an option for me. There just aren’t enough CFB games to allow postseason rematches when major conferences rarely play each other. The next team up was OkSU.”

            I very strongly agree with this. Note that it was also unfair to LSU. Alabama won beating only two ranked teams from the final AP Poll (Penn St. dropped out after the bowls), LSU and Arkansas, while splitting with LSU. LSU beat WVU (BE champ), Oregon (Pac 12 champ), Arkansas, Georgia and Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Its hard to beat a good team twice in a row.

            And that first AL/LSU game was so ugly I didn’t want to see the rematch even if I wasn’t opposed to it on principal.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            I really hate to weigh in on this topic since my team got the shaft in 2011, but question really is “most deserving” versus “best”. The poll members are very inconsistent from year to year. Some years like 2011, they pick “best”, while other years they pick “most deserving”.

            With all due respect to Bamatab, in 2011, the Tide may have been the second “best” team throughout the regular season, but they weren’t the “most deserving”. In fact, by losing to LSU in Tuscaloosa, the Tide actually had an easier path to the BSC NCG than LSU. Granted, they lost control of their own destiny, but the Tide avoided the SEC CG with a hot Georgia team in Atlanta, had an extra week to rest, and an extra week to prepare.

            In 2011, LSU played only six home games, defeated the Big East and Orange Bowl Champ (West Va) in Morgantown, and defeated the Pac-10 and Rose Bowl Champ (Oregon) at a neutral site. I know the Cowboys Stadium crowd was pro-LSU, but the Tigers still had to travel over 400 miles to get to the game. LSU defeated eight ranked teams that season.

            I would argue that while Alabama’s home loss to LSU in overtime was a better loss than OK State’s last second road loss to Iowa State, Alabama (2nd place in the SECW) had their shot against LSU on their campus and couldn’t pull out a win. Big XII champ OK State was “most deserving” of a shot. Also, LSU deserved a new team to play. LSU had winning a two game winning streak against the Tide, and three in a row was just too much to ask, or require.

            I’m not making excuses for my Tigers’ performance in the BCS NCG. LSU certainly could have played better on offense.

            Instead, the 2011 LSU team will go down in history with the 1988 Miami team as one of the best teams not to win a national championship. Note: the ’88 Miami team was the best team I’ve ever seen in person. That year they beat the SEC Champ (LSU), B1G Champ (Michigan), SWC Champ (Arkansas), Big 8 Champ (Nebraska), and a pre-season #1 team in Florida State that finished #3. The ‘canes lone loss was to eventual champ Notre Dame 31-30 in South Bend.

        • Larry says:

          Wouldn’t a better argument for College Basketball’s diminishing value of the regular season be that there are conferences where over 50% of the teams make the playoffs? If the 64 teams in the tournament were comprised of 2 teams max per conference or 4 teams max per conference, would that raise the value of the regular season significantly? (because mid-major and low-major games would matter, whereas now they don’t, and the major conference games would matter again because they aren’t all getting in).

          64 teams in Basketball would be like a 32 team tournament in football where the lower 5 conferences get their champions and the other 27 bids are split among the other 5 conferences. What would SEC regular season football games matter if 8 out of 14 teams are making the playoffs anyways? Because that is what is happening in D1 college basketball right now…

          I don’t think 8 with conference championship requirements is bad (top 8 conference champions that are either undefeated or ranked in the top 25 are in; if there aren’t 8 that qualify, then wild cards will be added). The way to make the regular season matter is to make conference championships matter, not to eliminate post season play, especially when there are 8 times more teams than games played.

    • duffman says:

      Interesting given his history in B1G country and the low probability his school has in the near future to be a participant. Seems like he would be agreeable to both Delany and Slive and may be why he was chosen to lead.

  43. Arch Stanton says:

    Nebraska’s upcoming home and home with Tennessee is being pushed back 10 years at Tennessee’s request. SEC going to a 9 game conference schedule?
    Nebraska adds home-and-home with Oregon for 2016-2017.

    http://www.huskers.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=100&ATCLID=209283172

    • Andy says:

      A lot of talk about it, seems likely.

      • Arch Stanton says:

        Now I’m seeing that the Tennessee request to change the game might have to do with the match up with Virginia Tech in the NASCAR stadium. Hopefully the SEC does go to 9 conference games but I think Florida, South Carolina, and Kentucky might fight it due to their annual OOC rivalry games.

      • ccrider55 says:

        Do official announcements count as talk and merely make it seem likely?

        “With the change in dates of the future matchups with Tennessee, Nebraska announced on Monday it has agreed to a home-and-home series in 2016 and 2017 with the University of Oregon.”

        • bullet says:

          I’ve seen comments that seem like resignation by SEC ADs regarding the 9 game schedule. ESPN has probably told them they need 9.

          • Andy says:

            Mizzou’s AD spoke directly about it, said it was a real possibility and they’re waiting on adding any more non-conference games until the issue is settled, and that it should be settled this winter.

  44. Wainscott says:

    Follow-up from the NC News-Observer reporter

    http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/10/11/3272793/through-unc-emails-a-look-back.html

    Also, an interesting analysis on UNC, Duke, & NCSU’s football programs: http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/10/11/3273571/giglio-historically-football-success.html

    Bottom line: Author things there is no reason to expect these programs to be anything more than what they have been in the last 60 years–mediocre with pockets of big success, though in UNC’s case, apparently Frank Beamer took the job and then backtracked in 2000 (http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/10/11/3272916/frank-beamer-on-taking-the-unc.html)

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Also, an interesting analysis on UNC, Duke, & NCSU’s football programs. . . .
      Bottom line: Author things there is no reason to expect these programs to be anything more than what they have been in the last 60 years–mediocre with pockets of big success.

      It’s devilishly difficult for teams to over-perform (or for that matter, to under-perform) their long-term average for any significant period of time. A few have pulled it off, but most can’t.

    • loki_the_bubba says:

      I have a hard time granting Duke ‘mediocre’ status.

      “Since the ACC was formed… Duke has a .395 winning percentage (252-390-16).”

      • bullet says:

        But Tulane and Rice lead the CUSA at this point at 3-0. Only Marshall, in the East, at 2-0 doesn’t have a conference loss among the rest.

  45. Andy says:

    For those interested, the initial reports by ESPN and CBS about Missouri QB James Franklin being out for the season were incorrect. Official word came out today. He is projected to be out 3 to 5 weeks, meaning he would miss between 2 and 4 games.

    • duffman says:

      2 games
      Florida
      South Carolina

      4 games
      Tennessee
      Kentucky

      remaining games
      Ole Miss – should be 6-4 heading into Missouri and 8 win season hopes
      Texas A&M – LSU may be only loss so 9-2 heading into Missouri game

      • Andy says:

        wow you’re such a tool.

        1) you’re assuming Franklin will miss all 4 and not just 2.

        2) you’re assuming there’s a tremendous dropoff between Franklin and Mauk even though Mauk broke the national high school record for total yards and is by all accounts an excellent passer and excellent scrambler. He redshirted last year and learned the offense, which is very similar to what he ran in high school. True he likely won’t be as good as Franklin but with Franklin Mizzou has won all 6 games by 15 or more points and scored nearly 50 pts per game. Also lead the SEC in rushing. As long as Mauk is decent the offense should still score.

        3) Florida just lost 17-6 to the same LSU team that lost to the Georgia team that Mizzou blew out (including beating them 13-0 in the 4th while Mauk was in there). Florida’s offense is very bad. Their starting QB is out and they just lost their starting RB for the season. Yes Mizzou might lose this game but right now Vegas thinks they won’t.

        4) South Carolina doesn’t look too promising for a Missouri win but we’ll see.

        5) Tennessee is bad. Mizzou beat them last year in Knoxville when Mizzou was significantly worse. Tennessee is at least as bad or worse this year and the game is in Columbia.

        6) Kentucky is awful. Their Sagarin ranking is 86. Mizzou beat them by 30 pts last year.

        So IF Franklin misses 4 games instead of 2 or 3, Mizzou should still be 8-2 or 9-1 at that point. But even if they’re somehow 7-3 an 8 win season is still highly probable.

        I can only assume you’re trolling at this point and always have been there’s no justification for the crap you’re saying.

        • duffman says:

          If you are going to tout Sagarin, then look at the first 6 SoS’s and the last 6.

          Missouri first half only 2 conference games played
          168 Murray State (FCS) 4-3, 2-1
          068 Toledo (MAC) 3-3, 2-1
          OPEN
          047 @ Indiana (B1G) 3-3, 1-1
          117 Arkansas State (Sun Belt) 3-3, 1-0
          048 @ Vanderbilt 3-3, 0-3
          016 @ Georgia 4-2, 3-1
          168 + 68 + 47 + 117 + 48 + 16 = 464 / 6 = 77.33 average

          Missouri second half half 6 conference games remain
          015 Florida 4-2, 3-1 (currently #16 SoS)
          017 South Carolina 5-1, 3-1(currently #20 SoS)
          045 Tennessee 3-3, 0-2 (currently #30 SoS)
          086 @ Kentucky 1-5, 0-3 (currently #3 SoS)
          OPEN
          031 @ Mississippi 3-3, 1-3 (currently #2 SoS)
          010 Texas A&M 5-1, 2-1 (currently #31 SoS)
          15 + 17 + 45 + 86 + 31 + 10 = 204 / 6 = 34.00 average

          34.00 2nd half < 77.33 1st half

          I hate using Sagarin but even you must be able to see the final 6 SoS’s average?
          16 + 20 + 30 + 3 + 2 + 31 = 102 / 6 teams = 17 SoS AVERAGE!

          I think you are either so blind or are trolling me to not see and acknowledge that the harder part of the Missouri schedule still has yet to be played.

          • Andy says:

            You have to look at the margins of those games too. Missouri didn’t just win those games, they dominated.

            Missouri’s Sagarin ranking is 7.

            At he very least they should beat Tennessee and Kentucky handily. They are also favored vs Florida and should be favored vs Ole Miss. That’s 6 wins plus 4 gams they’re favored in. They should only be underdogs in 2 more games this year, both at home.

            How you can say Mizzou won’t win 8 games when they’re sitting at 6-0 is ludicrous.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Florida just lost 17-6 to the same LSU team that lost to the Georgia team that Mizzou blew out (including beating them 13-0 in the 4th while Mauk was in there).

          There is no transitive property in football.

          • Andy says:

            Fair enough, but the point remains Florida has been decimated by injuries and is really struggling on offense. Worst offense in the SEC. Vegas guys are pretty smart and have Missouri as the 3 pt favorites this week.

          • bullet says:

            Vegas has nothing to do with who will win or lose. Its how people will bet.

          • Andy says:

            Sure, and they were very wrong about the last game. Mizzou beat the spread by 23 pts.

            I’m just saying Missouri should be favored in 4 out of their final 6 games, which would mean 10 wins, so 8 isn’t exactly a stretch.

      • Andy says:

        And the way I read that post is that that you’re still saying that Mizzou will not win 8 games this year (you’re saying Mizzou will go 0-7 or 1-6 in their next 7 games after starting 6-0 and winning every game by 15 or more pts), although you only implied it rather than saying it explicitly this time.

        • duffman says:

          I am saying beating Georgia helps greatly in getting to 8 but you still need 2 more wins

          I favor your opponent in these 2 games
          Florida
          South Carolina

          I give the edge to your opponent in these 2 games
          Texas A&M
          Mississippi

          I give the edge to Missouri in these 2 games
          Tennessee
          Kentucky

          If you lose the first 4 that puts you at 6-4 and needing the last 2 to get to 8. I feel one of the 2 will upset you, which means you do not get the eight wins. If it is too hard for you to see that this possibility exists then maybe the internet is too tough for you.

          • Andy says:

            So yeah, you’re predicting Mizzou, who started the season 6-0, won every game by 15 pts or more, ranks 3rd in the country in the composite computer rankings the BCS uses, will finish the season 1-5. Brilliant.

            You’re either a troll or a total tool. I can’t decide.

          • Arch Stanton says:

            Andy, could you please explain to me why you care so much about Duffman’s opinion of the Missouri Tigers?
            You know he doesn’t get to vote in any of the polls, right?
            Let other people have their opinions without resorting to grade school insults. Time will tell if Duffman is correct or not.
            Try to enjoy the season rather than constantly going into histrionics based on a perceived lack of respect that Missouri is getting.

          • Andy says:

            Why? Because I said I thought Mizzou would probably win 8 or more games this year, he laid into me and said no way they’ll win 8 games, Mizzou is a fraud, hasn’t beat anybody, will probably lose almost all of the rest of their games, and will never amount to anything in the SEC. We argued about it, he said, and I quote, “Beat Georgia and then I’ll believe it”, so then Mizzou beat Georgia, and now he’s saying Mizzou will finish the season 1-5 and that they didn’t prove anything. So when I call him a troll or a tool those aren’t schoolyard insults, he’s either one of the other or both, there’s no way around it.

          • Brian says:

            Arch,

            You’ll save yourself a lot of aggravation if you just don’t read what he writes, and certainly don’t respond to him.

          • Andy says:

            Yeah, I’m getting there…

          • Andy says:

            Brian, we both know you read every word that I write.

          • duffman says:

            Arch,

            Brian is right on this one.

            Andy is pro Missouri as a fan and that is great but he is at such an extreme that there is no tolerance for reasonable and rational discussion. Last season Andy blamed the poor performance by Missouri on their injury issues and I made the same point for Georgia this season. In a normal discussion this point would have been made and we all would have moved on. Andy instead views it as a personal affront to all things Tiger and it gets blown up to epic proportions and Andy resorts to name calling.

            It would be funny except for in the very beginning of Frank’s blog on realignment I was pro Missouri and Maryland to the B1G when this was not the popular opinion. While pro Missouri in nature I am not the blind level Andy demands so I must be anti Missouri and therefore a terrible human being. Brian got even more wrath because he was not in favor of any expansion early on and Andy seemed to view his posts as a direct conspiracy to undermine Missouri at any and all times. It reached a peak awhile back and I just gave up on responding to or engaging Andy when it involved anything to do with Missouri.

            He is not a terrible poster as long as the topic is not related to his team. I know lots of Indiana fans like him that are okay as long as you do not hit a point where they go to DEFCON 1 and try to nuke everything to defend a minor point. Stating the point that Missouri had an easy first half of the season and face a much tougher half now was a DEFCON 5 point that Andy has now escalated to DEFCON 1 because it involves Missouri instead of another team in FBS football. Brian is correct, and the best thing to do is ignore Andy when the discussion relates to Missouri. Now that you have made a rational comment, but not blind Missouri, Andy will probably lump you into perceived “Missouri Haters Club” of Brian, myself, and others.

            Welcome to the club I suppose.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Andy is pro Missouri as a fan and that is great but he is at such an extreme that there is no tolerance for reasonable and rational discussion.

            One of the real strengths of this forum is that most posters don’t use it for homering. Andy is the unfortunate exception.

          • Andy says:

            duff, I innocently noted, after Missouri beat Vanderbilt by 23 pts on the road, that Missouri would probably win 8 or more games this season. You chose to engage with me with extreme views that Missouri almost certainly would finish the season 2-5 or worse, but then said “if you beat Georgia then I’ll change my mind”. Then Mizzou beat Georgia by 15 pts despite losing their QB at the start of the 4th quarter. You chose to dismissively say that that road win against a top 10 team doesn’t really matter and that they would finish 1-5 or worse for the rest of the season.

            There is someone who is being extreme in this discussion and it ain’t me. I’m saing that the #14 ranked team in the country will probably go 2-4 or better. That’s not a “homer” view. That’s very conservative and modest. I tend to be very conservative when making any predictions about Missouri. I predicted a 7-5 season. I upped it to 8-4 after the Vandy game. Those are very modest predictions. And yet you called those predictions homer-ish and extreme.

            You’re the one being extreme. Not me.

            And you started it. And then you broke your word about what you’d say if Missouri beat Georgia. Which is pretty weasely of you. I can see why you and Brian get along so well.

          • Andy says:

            Also, I had nothing against Brian for being against B1G expansion. I never once said a word against that.

            Me and Brian’s conflicts came down to one single thing: When discussing expansion, I would bring up why Missouri was a decent candidate, and Brian would barge into the conversation and bash Missouri with the most dismissive and arrogant language possible. He was the aggressor 9 times out of 10. And yes, he did piss me off and I did get into back and forths with him, but your revisionist retelling of how it went down isn’t anywhere near the truth.

          • Andy says:

            Also, the reason Brian stopped responding to me is because his Missouri bashing had become so total that it had lost any logic or reasonableness at all, and I thoroughly demonstrated that through perfectly modest and reasonable arguments, and he really had no rebuttal whatsoever to what I said, so he gave up.

            It looks like you’re taking the same path. Fine by me. Very weasely of you, but at least you won’t make anymore obnoxious dismissive posts if ever I make modest predictions.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Andy: Although we all know that Brian is as passionate an Ohio State fan as they come, very few of his posts actually mention that school. Of course, he says many things one may disagree with, but he attempts (whether succeeding or failing) to approach the issues without wearing his school on his sleeve.

            I’ve lost count, but it seems like about 75% of your posts are somehow about Missouri, and about 99% of the 75% are blatant homering. This doesn’t mean you’re always wrong about Missouri, but when you only take one side, it’s hard to believe you even when you could be right. I could go out and do the research for myself, but if I’m forced to double-check you every time, it’s just not worth it.

          • Andy says:

            While it’s true that I talk about Missouri a lot, 8 times out of 10 it’s because somebody else brought them up first.

            And I don’t know how you define “homering”. I define it as distorting what you’re saying so that they’re more in favor of your home team than reality dictates.

            I don’t do that.

            I’m actually pretty conservative when I talk about Missouri.

            Academically they’re high 60s low 70s in grad work, they have top 50ish med school and law school, undergrad is more in the 90s and not really much different from Nebraska, Oklahoma, etc.

            Basketball is top 30ish, on par with Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Pitt, West Virginia, etc.

            Football is ranked in the 50s all time thanks to the Mizzou administration abandoning football throughout the 80s and 90s. Pre 1980 and post 2000 Mizzou is top 30ish.

            Mizzou is what it is. Above average but not great. I’ve never ever claimed otherwise. I just take exception to people claiming Mizzou is significantly worse than that, because it’s not true, and the facts back that up. There’s nothing homerish about that claim.

            If I were saying Mizzou was a solid top 25 program all time in football and basketball and on par with middle of the road Big Ten teams academically then, by my definition at least, I would be a homer. But I don’t do that.

          • Andy says:

            *meant to say top 50ish med school and business school. Law school was top 50 for a long time but has struggled in the last decade and is ranked in the 80s now I believe. See, I try to be accurate and correct myself even if it’s bad for Missouri. Would a homer do that?

          • duffman says:

            Here was the post from above :

            Andy,

            Nice win, but the season is still only half way there. If Franklin is out and the rest of the team piles on injuries the win today was easily a loss. As depleted as Georgia is with lost linemen, 3 elite receivers, and 2 draft picks they still played a very solid game. The Tigers were fortunate not to turn the ball over once while the Bulldogs did so 4 times. Again the win was good for Missouri but they only had 375 yards and were totally shut down in the 3rd quarter. The Georgia team had 454 yards and were still scoring in the 4th quarter with a very limited roster.

            I know you are all gung ho for your team and nothing wrong with that, but the season is not over until the last down is played.

            As you can see, I gave you full credit for the win. Instead you chose to focus on the issues if they can continue to win with an injured QB and a tougher schedule. Not acknowledging the positive part of the post and only concentrating on the questions is a good sign of homerism. As Marc pointed out Brian goes out of his way to exclude Ohio State and on the rare occasion I homer for Indiana it is written in a joking manner or I point out I am being a homer so there is full disclosure.

            Marc brought up an interesting point about fact checking that made me think as well. While my early support for Missouri was solid and direct, I do find myself tiring of checking up on your facts and it may have resulted over time in not believing what you say the first time. If I appear more critical about Missouri than I used to it could be due to your posting about Missouri. This is a good forum for discussion across the entire spectrum of FBS football and how you post may be doing more harm for your school than helping it. If this is a non homer site, when you press for Missouri, your posts stick out more.

            Brian and myself butt heads on here about various issues but I never remember calling him names or him doing the same to me. When I read his posts I do not ridicule his position as much as I try to see what he is trying to say from his point of view. Sometimes I see his point of view but when I do not I at least respect what that point may be. We all get you are excited about Missouri, just keep in mind we may not be at that same level and some may feel the same way about their own teams but they mellow it out when they post here.

          • Andy says:

            duff, I know my team beat your team by 17 pts in Bloomington this year, but that’s no reason to carry on this way.

            Those things you bolded are called backhanded compliments.

            “Oh, that was a nice win you had against a depleted Georgia squad. Good for you, man. Oh, you think you can finish the season with at least 2 wins out of six? Sorry, that’s just not likely at all. 1 win and five losses if you’re lucky. But then you do have to use a backup quarterback so I dunno, you may go 0-6. But really, great win. You go Andy.”

            And btw, I really don’t care what Brian does or doesn’t bring up. He’s a creep either way. I’ve seen him stand up for tOSU on the rare occasion that somebody bashes them. Just so happens people bash Missouri all the time on here. And by “people” I mean mostly Brian, bullet, and Arch, and now you.

            As for me, I’m not going around proclaiming Mizzou will win the SEC or anything. You could just let me make my modest prediction of 8 wins and 4 losses after starting 6-0 without getting all over my case about it.

            It’s not a crime of homerism for a fan of a top 15 team to think they can win at least 2 out of their last 6 games.

          • Andy says:

            As for this forum being respectful, I agree that a lot of people on here are.

            A couple of Nebraska guys who don’t post here very often any more were noticeably worse than me.

            Arch has been disrespectful at times.

            bullet as well, but in a more subtle way.

            But Brian took the cake. It looks like he’s tried to cool it in the last year or so but there was a long stretch there where he was much, much worse than I’ve ever been.

            If you don’t like that I stand up for myself when challenged so be it. Don’t talk to me. I wouldn’t mind that one bit.

          • Andy says:

            And for the record I don’t think I’m doing Missouri a disservice at all.

            Better that people don’t like me but the truth is represented then to have a bunch of chucklehead B1G fans bash Mizzou with lies all day long.

          • Andy says:

            Also, as far as fact checking me, Brian played that game for years. He fact checked every little thing I said. Tried to nitpick me to death. That was his favorite game. And not once did he ever come up with a single thing I said that was significantly wrong. Oh, I get the details a little bit off at times when I write from memory rather than looking up the exact details. But every single time what I’ve said has been pretty close to correct. Now, Brian can go on and on about how being pretty close to correct is somehow a terrible thing and invalidates me as a human, but that’s because he’s a sociopathic OCD weirdo. Feel free to do what Brian used to do. Go through every post I’ve made in the last month. Check for errors. I’d bet good money that like Brian you could nitpick a little hear or there but that I never said anything that wasn’t basically true give or take 10%. I know it might blow your mind but just because I’m a fan of a school that doesn’t make me a liar.

    • Andy says:

      Aside from duffman’s continued nonsensical trolling of me, I guess my point was that ESPN is becoming a TMZ-type source when it comes to Saturday night injury reports. They rush to be first and get the story wrong as often as not. Kind of a shame.

      • Andy says:

        And they probably won’t even bother to post a correction to their false story either.

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        @ Andy: you said: “… ESPN is becoming a TMZ-type source …”

        there is no “becoming” about it. ESpin IS the TMZ of college sports and sports, in general. Anyone for All Tebow All the time?

        ESpin exists to get ratings, page views, etc., which translates into getting $$ for the Mouse The Rules The World.

        as such, ESpin dissembles, outright lies, makes stories out of fluff, makes their personalities the story, hypes hypes hypes, etc. etc. etc.

        but, as loathsome as it is to sort of halfway defend ESpin, the “TMZ source” re: QB Franklin appears to be Bruce Feldman from CBS. As far as I can tell, he started it.

        on game day Saturday, SI reported Frannklin would be out 6 weeks based on Bruce Feldman’s tweet saying “…6 wks, probably longer w a Grade 2 shoulder separation, per source.”

        http://college-football.si.com/2013/10/12/missouri-james-franklin-separated-shoulder/

        Obviously, we just finished week 7 of the season and Mizzou has played 6 games. If Franklin is out “6 wks, probably longer” then he’s out essentially for the remainder of the season. That is what ESpin said. Now, in the meantime, all outlets are reporting Franklin out 3-5 weeks.

        my rule with ESpin is to think of them as an internet message board. if they are the only ones saying something, then it’s bull***t.

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          FWIW Franklin’s replacement is a redshirt freshman named Mauk. Hasn’t thrown a college pass yet, but some very impressive numbers from high school.

          “The coach said Mauk will start Saturday’s game against No. 22 Florida. The redshirt freshman hadn’t thrown a college pass prior to the Georgia game, but he came to Missouri in 2012 as a highly touted recruit. At Kenton High School in Kenton, Ohio, Mauk broke the national prep records for career passing yards (18,932), touchdown passes (219), pass completions (1,353) and total offense (22,681).”

          wow.

          http://college-football.si.com/2013/10/14/james-franklin-missouri-injury-out-3-5-weeks/#more-22348

          So, the Florida-Mizzou game should be entertaining. Lamb-2-Slaughter or Birth-Of-A-Star? Somewhere in the middle, of course, but should be interesting.

          • Andy says:

            Franklin’s injury was downgraded from a grade 2 separation to a grade 1 sprain. He may only miss 2 or 3 games. Responsible journalists chose to wait until the actual medical tests were done on Sunday. Feldman and ESPN rushed the story and got it totally wrong.

            As for Mauk, I wouldn’t say he’s never thrown a college pass. He led Mizzou to outscore Georgia 13-0 in the 4th quarter last Saturday. But yes, he’s inexperienced. He redshirted last year and learned the offense.

            Word is he’s very talented, but very inexperienced. We’ll probably see a mix of great plays and stupid ones.

  46. Fred says:

    I’m not sure where Brian’s population numbers for the various conferences came from, but I’m looking at Wikipedia, too — and the numbers he reports are wildly off-base. If you include all the “new ACC” states (no splits) the footprint is more like 96 million. The “new BIG” is something like 82 million. I didn’t have time to do the other conferences but the SEC numbers are way off, too — Fla,Tex and Ga alone are just shy of the total 58 million he assigns the SEC, and there are eight states still to be counted. So I would imagine that the numbers for the other conferences are equally flawed.

    Obviously, when splits are considered the numbers change quite a bit; but we might as well start with the right numbers

    • Brian says:

      Fred,

      “I’m not sure where Brian’s population numbers for the various conferences came from, but I’m looking at Wikipedia, too — and the numbers he reports are wildly off-base.”

      Yeah, I saw that afterwards but the discussion died out so I didn’t see the point in going back to fix it. These should look better:

      ACC – 95.3M
      SEC – 92.2M
      B10 – 85.0M
      P12 – 63.4M
      B12 – 37.7M

      This is one reason why the B12 should be concerned.

  47. Fred says:

    By the way, I didn’t include Notre Dame (Indiana) in the “new ACC” footprint, since the discussion is primarily about the value of football. But their association in football and full-membership in basketball+ should add something to the ACC’s national reach.

    • Brian says:

      Yeah, I don’t include IN for them either. Full member or nothing.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Notre Dame’s appeal has very little to do with the the state of Indiana. NBC didn’t give them a TV contract because of Indiana. They’re a national brand.

      What’s a lot more relevant is giving full credit to a state like New York, where the ACC nominally has a presence, but with a school (Syracuse) that most residents don’t identify with.

  48. bullet says:

    http://tucsoncitizen.com/usa-today-sports/2013/10/14/monday-tailgate-poll-history-at-the-seasons-midpoint/

    Interesting chart. Shows what the ACC’s problem has been. Too often they just don’t have enough teams in the top 25-this year is the first time since their 2005 expansion they have had more than 3 ranked teams at this point in the season:

    Thus, we decided to take a look at the Week 8 Coaches Poll from every year dating back to 2002, and break down the ranked teams by conference.

    2013: 7 SEC teams, 4 Big 12, 4 Pac-12, 4 ACC, 3 Big Ten, 1 AAC, 1 MWC, 1 MAC

    2012: 7 SEC, 5 Big 12, 5 Pac-12, 3 Big East, 2 ACC, 1 Big Ten, 1 MWC, 1 Independent

    2011: 6 Big Ten, 5 SEC, 4 Big 12, 4 Pac-12, 3 ACC, 1 Big East, 1 MWC, 1 C-USA

    2010: 6 SEC, 5 Big 12, 4 Big Ten, 3 Pac-10, 3 ACC, 2 MWC, 1 Big East, 1 WAC

    2009: 5 SEC, 4 Big 12, 3 ACC, 3 Big East, 3 Big Ten, 3 MWC, 2 Pac-10, 1 WAC, 1 C-USA

    2008: 6 Big 12, 5 SEC, 3 ACC, 3 Big Ten, 3 MWC, 2 Pac-10, 1 Big East, 1 WAC, 1 MAC

    2007: 7 SEC, 5 Big 12, 4 Pac-10, 3 ACC, 3 Big East, 2 Big Ten, 1 WAC

    2006: 6 SEC, 4 Big 12, 4 Big Ten, 3 ACC, 3 Pac-10, 3 Big East, 1 WAC, 1 Independent

    2005: 6 SEC, 5 ACC, 5 Big Ten, 4 Pac-10, 2 Big 12, 1 Big East, 1 MWC, 1 Independent

    2004: 5 SEC, 5 Big Ten, 4 Big 12, 3 ACC, 3 Pac-10, 2 C-USA, 1 Big East, 1 MWC, 1 WAC

    2003: 7 Big Ten, 4 Big 12, 4 SEC, 3 Pac-10, 3 Big East, 2 ACC, 1 C-USA, 1 MAC

    2002: 5 SEC, 5 Pac-10, 5 Big Ten, 4 Big 12, 2 ACC, 2 Big East, 1 MWC, 1 Independent

  49. BuckeyeBeau says:

    Bahamas Bowl.

    http://college-football.si.com/2013/10/14/mac-announces-bahamas-bowl/

    I think this is brilliant.

    My first thought was, “damn, how come my team can’t play in the Bahamas?” Then my second thought: “Aw, a way to overcome the home field advantage of all those south and southwest teams!!”

    But then I see the stadium seats only 30,000 according to this report. Not near big enough for B1G teams.

    But that is excellent IMO for the MAC. 30,000 might actually be too big, but any bigger and you are sure to look empty on TV. I think a lot of folks in the midwest might use the bowl game as an excuse to take a trip to the Bahamas even if it’s not “your team.” the novelty factor will be high.

  50. bullet says:

    Its interesting that UNC really does have importance with the increased emphasis on football. They are one of 4 P5 teams not to be ranked in the final AP Poll in the BCS era. They haven’t won a conference title since 1980. They aren’t in good company there. Teams who have been longer without a conference title:
    70s-North Carolina St., Kentucky, Kent St., Memphis, New Mexico St.
    60s-Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Indiana, South Carolina, Ole Miss, Ohio
    40s-Mississippi St.
    10s-Iowa St.
    Never-Vanderbilt and a few schools who didn’t have a football team when UNC last won a title or even when Duke last won a title in 1989 with Steve Spurrier as coach.

  51. BuckeyeBeau says:

    I am sorry, but the Oregon contact lenses for the cheerleaders completely freaks me out. Ugh.

    http://college-football.si.com/2013/10/13/between-the-hashes-college-football-week-7/

    Nike has gone too far.

    (But I loved the Huskies trolling the Ducks by putting yellow rubber duckies in the urinals at the stadium. I want to do mini-MI football helmets next year at the ‘Shoe !! LOL)

  52. Brian says:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2013/10/15/tuesday-tailgate-football-four-non-conference-games/2985255/

    A look ahead to 5 of the best OOC games each year for the next decade. The game has to have a firm date to count, and neither traditional rivalries nor ND games count.

    2014

    Wisconsin vs. LSU, Aug. 30 (at Houston)
    Oklahoma State vs. Florida State, Aug. 30 (at Arlington)
    Clemson at Georgia, Aug. 30
    Texas vs. UCLA, Sept. 13 (at Arlington)
    Virginia Tech at Ohio State, Sept. 20

    2015

    Alabama vs. Wisconsin, Sept. 5 (at Arlington)
    Auburn vs. Louisville, Sept. 5 (at Atlanta)
    Stanford at Northwestern, Sept. 5
    Ohio State at Virginia Tech, Sept. 7
    Nebraska at Miami, Sept. 19

    2016

    LSU vs. Wisconsin, Sept. 3 (at Lambeau Field)
    Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee, Sept. 7 (at Bristol Motor Speedway)
    Oregon at Nebraska, Sept. 17
    Ohio State at Oklahoma, Sept. 17
    Northwestern at Stanford, Sept. 24

    2017

    Maryland at Texas, Sept. 2
    Nebraska at Oregon, Sept. 9
    Georgia Tech at Ole Miss, Sept. 9
    Oklahoma at Ohio State, Sept. 16
    Texas at USC, Sept. 16

    2018

    Arkansas at Michigan, Sept. 1
    Texas A&M at Oregon, Sept. 15
    LSU at Oklahoma, Sept. 15
    USC at Texas, Sept. 15
    Boise State at Oklahoma State, Sept. 15

    2019

    Boise State at Florida State, Sept. 7
    Oregon at Texas A&M, Sept. 14
    Virginia Tech at Wisconsin, Sept. 14
    Oklahoma at LSU, Sept. 21
    TCU at Ohio State, Sept. 21

    2020

    Florida State at Boise State, Sept. 12
    Ohio State at Oregon, Sept. 12
    Wisconsin at Virginia Tech, Sept. 12
    Cincinnati at Nebraska, Sept. 12
    Virginia Tech at Michigan, Sept. 19

    2021

    Texas at Arkansas, Sept. 11
    Michigan at Virginia Tech, Sept. 11
    Oregon at Ohio State, Sept. 11
    Nebraska at Oklahoma, Sept. 18
    Oklahoma State at Boise State, Sept. 18

    2022

    Oklahoma at Nebraska, Sept. 17
    Ohio State at Texas, Sept. 17
    Penn State at Virginia Tech, Sept. 17
    Michigan State at Boise State, Sept. 17
    West Virginia at Virginia Tech, Sept. 24

    2023

    West Virginia at Penn State, Sept. 2
    Texas at Ohio State, Sept. 16
    Boise State at Michigan State, Sept. 16
    Virginia Tech at Penn State, Sept. 16
    Northern Illinois at Nebraska, Sept. 16

    32 games for the B10 out of 50 total. Part of that is due to scheduling strategy, I’m sure.

    • duffman says:

      Brian, went back and highlighted the brand type teams in BOLD
      For secondary SEC – as they seem to rotate – they were put in italic
      Did not see Notre Dame listed in any year but seems they should be somewhere
      Non ACC / B1G / B12 / PAC / SEC schools denoted by ****school****
      SEC appear in flux and may be due to 9 game schedule issues

      12 schools with most brand value ? (roughly 10% of FBS)
      (1) ACC : Florida State
      (4) B1G : Michigan, Ohio State, Nebraska, and Penn State
      (2) B 12 : Oklahoma and Texas
      (1) I ND : Notre Dame
      (1) PAC : Southern Cal
      (3) SEC : Alabama + 2 of 6 (AU, LSU, UGA, TAMU, UF, and UT)

      2014
      Wisconsin vs LSU, Aug. 30 (Houston)
      Oklahoma State vs Florida State, Aug. 30 (Arlington)
      Clemson @ Georgia, Aug. 30
      Texas vs UCLA, Sept. 13 (Arlington)
      Virginia Tech @ Ohio State, Sept. 20

      2015
      Alabama vs Wisconsin, Sept. 5 (Arlington)
      Auburn vs Louisville, Sept. 5 (Atlanta)
      Stanford @ Northwestern, Sept. 5
      Ohio State @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 7
      Nebraska @ Miami, Sept. 19

      2016
      LSU vs Wisconsin, Sept. 3 (Lambeau Field)
      Virginia Tech vs Tennessee, Sept. 7 (Bristol Motor Speedway)
      Oregon @ Nebraska, Sept. 17
      Ohio State @ Oklahoma, Sept. 17
      Northwestern @ Stanford, Sept. 24

      2017
      Maryland @ Texas, Sept. 2
      Nebraska @ Oregon, Sept. 9
      Georgia Tech @ Ole Miss, Sept. 9
      Oklahoma @ Ohio State, Sept. 16
      Texas @ USC, Sept. 16

      2018
      Arkansas @ Michigan, Sept. 1
      Texas A&M @ Oregon, Sept. 15
      LSU @ Oklahoma, Sept. 15
      USC @ Texas, Sept. 15
      ****Boise State**** @ Oklahoma State, Sept. 15

      2019
      ****Boise State**** @ Florida State, Sept. 7
      Oregon @ Texas A&M, Sept. 14
      Virginia Tech @ Wisconsin, Sept. 14
      Oklahoma @ LSU, Sept. 21
      TCU @ Ohio State, Sept. 21

      2020
      Florida State @ Boise State, Sept. 12
      Ohio State @ Oregon, Sept. 12
      Wisconsin @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 12
      ****Cincinnati**** @ Nebraska, Sept. 12
      Virginia Tech @ Michigan, Sept. 19

      2021
      Texas @ Arkansas, Sept. 11
      Michigan @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 11
      Oregon @
      Ohio State, Sept. 11
      Nebraska @ Oklahoma, Sept. 18
      Oklahoma State @ ****Boise State****, Sept. 18

      2022
      Oklahoma @ Nebraska, Sept. 17
      Ohio State @ Texas, Sept. 17
      Penn State @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 17
      Michigan State @ ****Boise State****, Sept. 17
      West Virginia @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 24

      2023
      West Virginia @ Penn State, Sept. 2
      Texas @ Ohio State, Sept. 16
      ****Boise State**** @ Michigan State, Sept. 16
      Virginia Tech @ Penn State, Sept. 16
      ****Northern Illinois**** @ Nebraska, Sept. 16

      • Brian says:

        duffman,

        “Did not see Notre Dame listed in any year but seems they should be somewhere”

        The guy explicitly left out all ND games because they only play OOC games. I noted that in my comment.

        “SEC appear in flux and may be due to 9 game schedule issues”

        Yeah, that’s why I mentioned schedule strategy as a factor. Not everyone is looking to lock in games for specific dates 10 years from now. That’s why Boise starts showing up in the later years.

        • duffman says:

          See this is where Notre Dame is a hybrid. With contractual games that the Big East never got they are not IND like they were before. Sure they have greater scheduling flexibility than most but in a practical sense the non ACC games should be viewed along the line of OOC games. I have even considered putting them in the ACC when posting just because they are no longer actually IND.

          • Brian says:

            I completely disagree. If anything, it’s their locked rivalries that would be more equivalent to conference games. Since ND can’t ever win the ACC, they clearly aren’t an ACC member.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Completely omitting ND certainly seems silly. Texas and ND aren’t in the same conference, and they don’t play regularly. So why would you include Texas vs. Ohio State, and not Texas vs. Notre Dame? That makes no sense at all.

        For the rest of ND’s games, it depends on what question you’re trying to answer. In a way, ND’s series with USC is no different than their series with Michigan: it can be ended by either side whenever the contract allows them to do so. But I can certainly see the argument for omitting games that have been played annually since Forever, and that (as far as we know) are expected to continue indefinitely.

        I consider ND’s ACC games to be “non-conference” games. It’s not only in the literal sense that ND cannot win that conference. Some people seem to forget that ND was already playing roughly 3 ACC games a year. Bumping that up to 5 wasn’t such a dramatic shift (although some Michigan fans feel differently).

        If you’re trying to point out schools who schedule aggressively, then perhaps you’d omit ND’s ACC games, because those games are no longer voluntary one-offs; instead, they’re assigned by the ACC office. If you’re trying to point out compelling non-conference match-ups, excluding rivalries contested annually, then you’d include them.

        • duffman says:

          If you’re trying to point out schools who schedule aggressively, then perhaps you’d omit ND’s ACC games, because those games are no longer voluntary one-offs; instead, they’re assigned by the ACC office.

          Reasonable point

          The biggest issue is the Irish are half in / half out (5 games is roughly half of the 8 or 9 games the power conferences play) and they may view themselves with full independence but in practical terms they are not. When I put up the Sagarin comparison numbers every week I have often considered just adding Notre Dame to the ACC group and dropping all the non Big 5 schools from the weekly post. Louisville and Rutgers will self correct next season so it seems a pain in the ass to follow all the non Big 5′s next season just to follow the Irish.

          Maybe I am just vocalizing what everybody expects, but next season my guess is any non Big 5 school that goes undefeated will not get an invite to the playoffs. This means an undefeated MAC, MWC, CUSA, or IND will be SOL going forward. BYU may fall out in the future and at some point Notre Dame being the only IND with a playoff shot will be the exception that will over time exert more pressure to join full time somewhere.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Maybe I am just vocalizing what everybody expects, but next season my guess is any non Big 5 school that goes undefeated will not get an invite to the playoffs.

            Well, even in the current system it’s fairly uncommon that a mid-major is ranked in the top four by season’s end. Are you saying there’s a conspiracy to exclude them, or are you just pointing out the obvious: that, even when undefeated, those teams usually aren’t good enough?

            …at some point Notre Dame being the only IND with a playoff shot will be the exception that will over time exert more pressure to join full time somewhere.

            In college athletics, most changes are first talked about for many years before they actually happen. Who are the university presidents, commissioners, and ADs talking about forcing ND into a conference? I don’t see any groundswell for that, except mainly among fans who have no say.

            Four of the five power leagues have games scheduled with ND well into the future (all but the SEC). The leagues want those games, because they provide great exposure, since ND vs. anybody is practically always nationally televised. Even Purdue was able to get the ABC/ESPN #1 broadcast crew (Musburger/Herbstreit), solely because they were playing Notre Dame.

            If you force ND into a league, they probably join the ACC. In fact, I believe that if they join any league full-time between now and the mid-2020s, they are contractually bound to join the ACC.

            Neither the Big Ten nor the SEC wants the ACC to get stronger, because there are teams in the ACC that the other leagues covet. The Pac-12 doesn’t want to force ND into a league, because it’s highly unlikely that the USC and Stanford games would continue as annual affairs. In fact, if ND joins the ACC full-time, I suspect they’d drop every annual game except Navy.

            The Big XII doesn’t want to force ND into a league, because Texas and Oklahoma want to keep scheduling the Irish. Besides that, if the ACC gets stronger, then which league becomes the weakest P5 conference? That’s right, the Big XII. (You may argue that the Big XII is weakest even now, but at least it’s arguable. Adding ND full-time to the ACC ends the argument.)

            So exactly where would the votes come from, to force ND into a conference?

          • duffman says:

            Well, even in the current system it’s fairly uncommon that a mid-major is ranked in the top four by season’s end. Are you saying there’s a conspiracy to exclude them, or are you just pointing out the obvious: that, even when undefeated, those teams usually aren’t good enough?

            Not so much conspiracy just limited value. Advertisers are like Wall Street in that they love the predictable because the income streams are stable. Selling Alabama vs Ohio State is a whole lot easier than selling Fresno State vs Northern Illinois. The other issue is the probability of real blowouts when the matchup involves a Big 5 school and a non Big 5 school. Last year we had Alabama 42 and Notre Date 14 but imagine if it had been Alabama 82 and Northern Illinois 7 (if the Huskies had not lost their opening game to Iowa 17-18) instead. It is not if it can actually happen but if the advertisers fear it can actually happen. Boise State has flirted with the top but has never shown it can sustain a top.

            TCU was gangbusters in their old conference but now they are struggling in their new home and they could have looked much worse in score differential when Alan’s Tigers rolled into Dallas earlier this season. Look at TCU over the past few years :

            2008 MWC 11-2
            2009 MWC 12-1
            2010 MWC 13-0
            2011 MWC 11-2
            2012 Big12 7-6
            2013 Big12 3-3

            Now imagine if your were an advertising guy betting their job on the viewers of a MNC game. Maybe you are the guy that goes high risk for possible reward but most will go low risk for predictable reward.

            .

            .

            In college athletics, most changes are first talked about for many years before they actually happen. Who are the university presidents, commissioners, and ADs talking about forcing ND into a conference? I don’t see any groundswell for that, except mainly among fans who have no say.

            I agree with this statement and I am looking at 2025 type period as the next move. Not saying right now about Notre Dame but in 2 – 5 years it would not surprise me in the least to begin to hear rumblings that begin the discussion to no longer have Notre Dame as the only IND in the Big 64.

            .

            .

            Neither the Big Ten nor the SEC wants the ACC to get stronger, because there are teams in the ACC that the other leagues covet. The Pac-12 doesn’t want to force ND into a league, because it’s highly unlikely that the USC and Stanford games would continue as annual affairs. In fact, if ND joins the ACC full-time, I suspect they’d drop every annual game except Navy.

            I was thinking that early on but now am thinking there is a divergent path between the B1G and SEC and it has everything to do with the media partners. With the B1G tied to FOX, every ACC defection is a pickup for FOX but a loss by ESPN. With the SEC and ESPN now tied together every ACC defection moves a team from the ACC to the SEC. How does that make economic sense for ESPN? If ESPN uses the SEC to firewall the ACC then they can protect 2 franchises and keep FOX out of both. I saw an interview with Skipper (ESPN head and UNC grad) and Slive (SEC head and UVA grad) I should have bookmarked. Both seemed very relaxed and comfortable with each other.

            You already have the following ACC and SEC non conference games
            + Florida State vs Florida – in state rival (57 game history)
            + Miami vs Florida – in state rival (54 game history)
            + Clemson vs South Carolina – in state rival (110 game history)
            + Clemson vs Auburn – historic rival (49 game history)
            + Clemson vs Georgia – historic rival (62 game history)
            - Duke vs South Carolina – (44 game history, last game 1991)
            - Wake Forest vs South Carolina – (56 game history, last game 1987)
            + Georgia Tech vs Georgia – in state rival (107 game history)
            + Georgia Tech vs Auburn – border state rival (92 game history)
            - Georgia Tech vs Alabama – dormant rival (52 game history, last game 1984)
            - Georgia Tech vs Tennessee – dormant rival (43 game history, last game 1987)
            + Louisville vs Kentucky – in state rival (25 game history beginning in 1990′s)
            + N Carolina vs S Carolina – border state rival (55 game history)
            ? N Carolina vs Tennessee – border state (32 game history)
            + NC State vs South Carolina – border state (57 game history)
            ? Virginia has history with Vanderbilt and South Carolina
            ? Virginia Tech has history with Kentucky and South Carolina

            The ACC schedules the SEC in so many cross conference games no other 2 conferences can come close to how intertwined they are with each other. If the SEC stays strong it can continue to cross schedule top draw games without having to feed more members. While the new SEC network may get 1.00 carriage in SEC states they may get .50 cents in ACC states, and .10 cents in all the other states. In looking at all the ACC and SEC schools they have all played each other to some extent.

            Remove Arkansas, Texas A&M, and Missouri…
            Remove Pittsburgh, Syracuse, and Boston College…

            Clemson played ALL SEC schools
            Georgia Tech played ALL SEC schools
            Miami played ALL SEC schools – this surprised me!
            Florida State played 10 of 11 SEC schools (no Vanderbilt)
            North Carolina played 10 of 11 SEC schools (no MS)
            Virginia Tech played 10 of 11 SEC schools (no MS State)
            Duke played 9 of 11 SEC schools (no MS or MS State)
            NC State played 9 of 11 SEC schools (no LSU or MS)
            Wake Forest played 9 of 11 SEC schools (no AL or UK)
            Notre Dame played 8 of 11 SEC schools (no Auburn, UK, or MS State)
            Louisville played 7 of 11 SEC schools (no GA, LSU, SC, or MS)
            Virginia played 7 of 11 SEC schools (no AL, LSU, MS, or MS Sate)

            .

            In short I can see ESPN having the ACC and SEC stay at 8 conference games and having 1 cross conference game become the 9th “inter conference” game to sell piggy back network carriage. Say in GA, FL, and SC ESPN charges 2.00 carriage and you get both the SEC and ACC (1.25 to SEC network and .75 goes to ACC network) as these 2 conferences seem the only ones with enough crossover to pull this off.

          • bullet says:

            Most of the ACC and the SEC were together in the southern conference before the SEC was formed so its logical that they played.

            As for your TCU comment:
            Rose Bowl 2010 MWC champ TCU 21 Big 10 champ Wisconsin 19
            Had a Bama player not gotten lackadaisical heading into the end zone and let an Auburn player strip him from behind, TCU would have gotten a chance to test Oregon in the MNC game that year.

          • duffman says:

            Most of the ACC and the SEC were together in the southern conference before the SEC was formed so its logical that they played.

            I get that point, but what I was looking at was how they still play each other even today. We all think of the core rival games between in state cross conference teams in FL, GA, SC, and KY but looking at say North Carolina games played you get about 175 games – and the Tar Heels never played Mississippi or Texas A&M – so the Tar Heels averaged about 15 games each among the remaining 12 schools. Drop Arkansas and Missouri and that number jumps closer to 20 games per school.

            Contrast that with the current B1G schools playing 20 games total all time with the Tar Heels or about 2 games per school on average. Viewed another way the entire total of B1G vs UNC is roughly double the times Kentucky played North Carolina by itself. Another reason for the intertwined games is the crossing of coaches and AD’s between the ACC and the SEC. Spurrier went from Duke to Florida and Cutcliffe went from Ole Miss to Duke. It is like a recurring cycle between the 2 conferences.

    • cutter says:

      FWIW, Michigan hasn’t wrapped up its 2017 non-conference schedule yet. The only game listed on it is the 9 September game with Cincinnati. That leaves two open slots yet to fill.

      Chick-Fil-A has been looking at UM as a possible participant in their season opening football game in Atlanta. That would have the Wolverines playing an ACC or SEC team during the Labor Day weekend that year.

      The other possibility is a home-and-home for the 2017 and 2022 seasons. Michigan has home-and-home with Arkansas (2018/9) and Virginia Tech (2020/1) on its future slate. Depending on how the two programs develop, Michigan-BYU in 2015 could be a high interesting game as well. We’ll see.

  53. duffman says:

    error for 2021 should be :

    2021
    Texas @ Arkansas, Sept. 11
    Michigan @ Virginia Tech, Sept. 11
    Oregon @ Ohio State, Sept. 11
    Nebraska @ Oklahoma, Sept. 18
    Oklahoma State @ ****Boise State****, Sept. 18

    • bullet says:

      Saw this posted on another board. Supports what I have said that the Big 12, Big 10 and SEC have all scheduled very weakly ooc. Hopefully it is starting to change. They posted the ooc for the Big 12, Big 10 and SEC.

      AVG sagarin ranking of non-conference opponents past 5 years (Record in those games in parenthesis):

      BIG 12
      1. Oklahoma – 79.3 (14-3)
      2. Iowa State – 80.1 (12-5)
      3. TCU – 87.8 (15-3)
      4. Texas – 91.9 (14-3)
      5. West Virginia – 94.3 (17-4)
      6. Oklahoma State – 97.8 (15-2)
      7. Baylor – 100.5 (15-2)
      8. Kansas – 100.7 (11-6)
      9. Kansas State – 105.0 (14-3)
      10. Texas Tech – 129.9 (16-1)
      AVERAGE – 96.7 (143-32)

      BIG TEN
      1. Illinois – 82.9 (12-8)
      2. Penn State – 90.9 (15-5)
      3. Purdue – 91.7 (9-11)
      4. Iowa – 97.3 (15-5)
      5. Michigan – 97.4 (18-2)
      6. Minnesota – 98.3 (13-7)
      7. Nebraska – 98.8 (17-3)
      8. Michigan State – 99.5 (15-5)
      9. Ohio State – 104.7 (18-2)
      10. Wisconsin – 106.8 (17-2)
      11. Indiana – 119.8 (12-8)
      12. Northwestern – 123.1 (18-2)
      AVERAGE – 100.9 (179-60)

      SEC
      1. South Carolina – 78.5 (18-0)
      2. Missouri – 83.8 (17-2)
      3. Texas A&M – 86.1 (15-3)
      4. Florida – 89.4 (15-3)
      5. Georgia – 94.4 (14-4)
      6. LSU – 99.5 (19-0)
      7. Arkansas – 107.7 (17-3)
      8. Alabama – 109.7 (19-0)
      9. Auburn – 110.5 (17-2)
      10. Mississippi – 114.6 (14-4)
      11. Tennessee – 115.7 (17-3)
      12. Kentucky – 121.4 (14-5)
      13. Mississippi State – 124.4 (17-3)
      14. Vanderbilt – 125.2 (13-6)
      AVERAGE – 104.4 (226-38)

  54. frug says:

    http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/page/local/university-of-virginia-assessment-report/302/

    This is a few months old, but here is UVA’s Strategic Assessment. The report has surprisingly negative feedback especially starting around page 13.

  55. ccrider55 says:

    OMG!
    Trailing 2-1 in stoppage time, the US scores to enable Mexico to qualify, and deny Panama. And then scores again to win, in Panama!

    • @ccrider55 – Can’t believe that (a) Panama blew yet another game at the end like that after last week’s last minute loss to Mexico and (b) Mexico managed to back into the World Cup almost solely due to the US.

    • Richard says:

      Mexico still has to beat New Zealand over 2 legs. You would think that El Tri would blow out a minnow like that like ‘Bama would handle NIU, but Mexico has probably performed worse in qualifying than USC has this year (and I think gone through more coaches).

  56. mushroomgod says:

    I found this interesting….U Conn’s “peer intituitions” are Missouri, ISU, Georgia….and OSU, Purdue, Minnesota, Iowa, and Rutgers

    • Andy says:

      There doesn’t seem to be much rhyme or reason to a lot of the “peer institution” lists.

      Mizzou just listed every public AAU school.

      Michigan seems to have listed every single AAU school, public and private.

      Just seems to be whatever the institution feels like listing.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Actually, those lists are pretty reasonable. Michigan thinks of itself as the peer of any excellent school, public or private, so it listed all the AAU institutions.

        Missouri knows it can’t claim to be the equal of Harvard without being laughed out of the room, so it has a more modest list, the public AAU schools.

        I haven’t seen the full UConn list, but it looks like it’s focusing (generally) on state flagships, whether they’re in the AAU or not (Georgia is not). That’s not a crazy strategy if you’re UConn.

        • mushroomgod says:

          As far as I could tell, that is the full U CONN list…..

          I think it’s interesting in that it may give an indication of the direction U CONN wants to go academically…..

          I think the schools chosen are somewhat odd for a couple of reasons……first, U Conn presently is kind of a poor man’s Virginia……elite undergraduate, smallish (for a state flagship school), not a huge research school (in comparison to undergrad prestige), relatively small endowment (lower than any current BIG school, much lower than VA’s, which is in turn much lower than Mich”s). That profile would suggest schools such as VA, GT, and private schools such as Miami. Secondly, most of these peer lists feature schools that are higher rated in US News…..as they are kind of an indication of what the schools aspires to….yet U Conn is higher rated in US News than all except OSU…

          • Richard says:

            Elite undergrad?

          • mushroomgod says:

            Maybe for you, Richard, it’s not elite….but going strictly form memory, I think U Conn had something like 30000 applications recently and accepted 44%….and it’s rated 57 in US News….given that there are thousands of colleges from which us heathens may choose, I would suggest that is elite.

          • duffman says:

            Michigan seems to have listed every single AAU school, public and private.

            It is an excellent academic school so I can see them listing private schools as well as public ones. If they want to associate with Harvard and the like they have the chops to do so.

            I think it’s interesting in that it may give an indication of the direction U CONN wants to go academically…..

            I tend to agree. If you aim higher in the process your are by default aiming higher when you get to the finish line.

          • Richard says:

            Look, I’m just saying, if UConn is elite, then what are PSU, Illinois, & Wisconsin? Super-elite? And Michigan, UVa, UNC, UCLA, and Cal are super-super-elite? (Harvard & Stanford must be super-super-duper-elite).

            The whole B10 must be elite then, except the B10 schools are very strong in research, which UConn is not.

          • vp19 says:

            Academically, UConn is probably closer to UMass and Delaware than it is to UVa.

  57. mushroomgod says:

    Haven’t seen any comment on here yet about US News’ 2014 undergrad rankings…….

    Not easy to compare 2013 to 2014….seems like US News doesm’t want to promote past ratings……to avoid confusion? Or to limit criticism? Not sure why, but I could only find partial reports from past years.

    For 2013, the rankings were tweeked in a way that favored smaller, private schools at the expense of the state flagships….for 2014, the reverse happened……due to pushback?? Who knows, but flagships as a hole fared better in ’14.

    Here’s the Big’s ’4 v. ’13 rankings (’14 first):

    NW……12 v. ?
    MICH 28 v. 29
    PSU 37 v. 46?
    ILL 41 v. 46
    WIS 41 v. 41
    OSU 52 v. 56
    MD 62 v. 58
    PUR 68 v. 65
    RUT 69 v. 68
    MN 69 v. 68
    MSU 73 v. 71
    IOWA 73 v. 72
    IU 75 v. 83
    NEB 101 v. 101

    Some observations: Over the years I’ve watched these, UM, Rut, and MN have trended down a little. Of trad. BIG schools, Wis has lost the most spots over the last 9-10 years. Not sure why. For some reason Maryland has lost a full 10 spots over the last 4-5 years.

    PSU and OSU have been the biggest gainers. OSU became for selective in admissions a whoile back… Purdue had been gaining some until the last year or two….

    MSU, Iowa, IU, NW, and ILL have been up and down, but are pretty much back where they used to be…..I’ve read a lot over the last few years about ILL’s financial issues and dispute swith the state….so far, those issues aren’t reflected in the rankings.

    For ’14, U Conn is at 57, Kan at 101, OK at 101, MO at 97.

  58. Wainscott says:

    NFL explores a New Slate of Thursday Night Games: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303376904579138091683799998

    My favorite quote:

    “The NFL is disappointed its own cable channel, NFL Network, hasn’t attracted more viewers for the 13 Thursday night games it airs each season, the person said. The league believes that adding a second game to create double-headers on some Thursdays could create more national interest.”

    Because the way to increase fan interest in crappy Thursday night NFL games is to double the number of crappy Thursday night NFL games.

    Crap + Crap = MOAR KRAP!

    • @Wainscott – Yes, that was a strange argument from the NFL. To be sure, those crappy games still consistently receive the 2nd highest Age 18-49 rating that advertisers pay for on Thursday, which is the most competitive and expensive advertising night on television (due to movie studios, car companies and retailers buying up spots to spur weekend business). Only The Big Bang Theory scores higher on that evening and that’s the top rated 18-49 show on all of television with the exception of… NFL Sunday Night Football. Even the crappiest games from the NFL still destroy about 99% of everything else on television in terms of viewership.

      So, I see the value proposition that the NFL is seeking there. I don’t like it as a fan (I’d much rather have a Monday Night Football doubleheader or a late night Sunday game if the NFL is seeking more timeslots – that spur of the moment late night West Coast game in Oakland a couple of weeks ago due to MLB playoff stadium conflicts was great), but Thursday is where a disproportionate amount of the advertising money lies. That’s why all of the over-the-air networks put so many of their best shows on that evening specifically despite such heavy competition.

      • Also note that those NFL Thursday Night ratings are dragged down simply by the fact that the NFL Network is in substantially fewer homes than ESPN/TBS/TNT/USA, much less the over-the-air networks. So, the fact that those games are still beating everyone on Thursday other than the #1 18-49 non-NFL program on television shows you how much of a juggernaut the NFL is compared to everything else (whether it’s sports or entertainment in general).

      • Wainscott says:

        @FrankTheTank:

        Oh, I know the lure of Thursday night ad money–its not an accident that NBC’s Must See TV was always Thursday nights–for precisely the reasons you state. I just think its bad football.

        Also, from one lawyer to another, go read the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961 and tell me why the NFL cannot broadcast via Google/Netflix games on Friday nights. The Act states in part:

        “The first sentence of section 1291 of this title shall not apply to any joint agreement described in such section which permits the telecasting of all or a substantial part of any professional football game on any Friday after six o’clock postmeridian or on any Saturday during the period beginning on the second Friday in September and ending on the second Saturday in December from any telecasting station located within seventy-five miles of the game site of any intercollegiate or interscholastic football contest scheduled to be played on such a date.”

        As I read that, an argument can be made that if games on Google/Netflix are not telecast from a telecasting station, this restriction (15 USC 1293) does not apply, potentially allowing these games on Friday nights and Saturdays.

        For those unfamiliar, a quick primer:

        Joint agreements among teams to pool TV rights is technically an anti-trust violation, as it is an artificial restraint on each team’s right to negotiate its own TV deal. To get around that, the NFL lobbied congress to pass the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961 by promising an expansion franchise in New Orleans). The Act, though, made rural and suburban legislators in states with big time college and high school football nervous, hence the prohibition against pooling rights for professional football games on Friday nights and Saturdays.

        Thoughts?

        • bullet says:

          Interesting. I thought it was just a tacit live and let live agreement. Prior to the last couple of years they had ceded TH to the colleges.

        • Wainscott says:

          Just to update my post, ignore the part about promising New Orleans a franchise. That came in 1966, when the NFL needed Congress to approve the NFL-AFL merger, and Speaker of the House Hale Boggs (D-LA) agreed so long as the NFL put a team in New Orleans. Rozelle agreed and, hence, the merger and the Saints.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            wainscot – slight correction. Hale Boggs was majority whip at the time. In 1971, He was elected majority leader and killed in a plane crash later that year, while campaigning for a colleague who was running for governor in Alaska. If he had lived, Boggs was in line to be Speaker after Carl Albert’s retirement in 1977, instead of Tip O’Neal. Hale Boggs’ daughter is ABC journalist/pundit Cokie Roberts.

        • @Wainscott – Yes, the NFL argument would be that Google/Netflix aren’t telecasts. It would be interesting to see how the courts would rule on that matter since the concept of broadcasting has changed quite a bit since 1961.

          Another way to get around those restrictions is the presence of international teams (i.e. Toronto, London, etc.). The argument there would be that the US law would not be applicable and, even if it did, those teams would presumably be outside of the 75-mile restriction.

          • Strike my last statement – the 75-mile rule applies to any “telecasting station”. In that case, I wonder if this could even be challenged by a cable network (much less an Internet-based entity). The language of the law is intended for over-the-air broadcast stations that are physically located in and transmitted from local markets. ESPN and other cable channels, though, aren’t structured that way. Maybe cable networks have already tested whether they are considered to be “telecasting stations” under the law, but I’m not sure.

          • Wainscott says:

            I am sure the FCC regulations would not permit the cable tv providers to do that. Same with satellite broadcasters. Likely because the end result is a game being viewed on a television set.

            Also, NFL rules require all cable telecasts to be broadcast over the air in primary markets. The NFL cannot end that practice without angering rural state congressmen and senators, especially when home markets are already thought to be too small.

          • vp19 says:

            Just what we need…more prime-time games for the overrated NFC Least (tops in fan bases, the bottom in performance).

        • Richard says:

          Chances are very good that the NFL will not try to risk their anti-trust exemption by broadcasting on Friday or Saturday. Plus, what would they gain, really? Friday night is a worse night for TV than Thursday. Saturday has a ton of college games to compete against.

          • Wainscott says:

            Oh, I think the NFL on Friday night would do gangbusters. It would kill all comers.

          • Wainscott says:

            As for Saturday, you are correct. The NFL actually used to have Saturday afternoon games in December, but ended them, because as one insider stated, the games were “a ratings wasteland.” –And that’s without competition from CFB. NFL on Saturday night would likely beat CFB in the ratings, but the cannibalism might not be worth it.

            Better question- Why no NFL telecast on Friday after Thanksgiving? The SBA would permit it, so long as the game ends before 6pm. A 12:30pm game, even with OT, would end by then.

          • bullet says:

            They created a market on Monday night. Not sure the same thing happens on Friday. 100% of nothing is still nothing.

          • Richard says:

            Friday is a poor night for TV. The NFL would kill everything, but while Friday night isn’t nothing, it’s very bad for TV. There’s a reason why ESPN puts hardly any good CFB games on Friday night.

          • @Richard – Yes, this is true. There really isn’t a large financial incentive to show games on Friday or Saturday for the NFL, anyway. Frankly, if maximizing dollars is the name of the game, then the NFL would create a separate Wednesday night package. This would work if the NFL made sure that teams playing in those games would have a bye week prior to it. (Or they can just freely ignore injuries and poor quality of play as they do now with the Thursday night games.) The dollars are ultimately made in prime time on weeknights, so a doubleheader on Thursday provides diminishing returns since the 1st game would presumably start earlier than prime time in the Eastern and Central Time Zones while the 2nd game would end well after prime time in those areas, as well.

          • bullet says:

            There’s also some risk. More games not on Sunday potentially diminishes the Sunday watching habit if your team isn’t playing nearly every Sunday.

    • Wainscott says:

      The NFL denied the WSJ report, but good ol’ Double J says otherwise:

      http://deadspin.com/jerry-jones-nfl-could-easily-have-doubleheader-on-thu-1447740714

  59. vp19 says:

    Big Ten announces its 2018 and 2019 conference football schedules…

    http://www.bigten.org/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/101613aad.html

    Maryland closes at Penn State in ’18, at Michigan State in ’19; Rutgers on the road the other way around.

    • @vp19 – The biggest change is that the Big Ten is now going to have sporadic conference games earlier in the season. 2018 has 1 conference game in each of weeks 1 and 3, while 2019 has 1 conference game in each of weeks 2 and 3.

      • cutter says:

        FWIW, in the working file dated 10-15-13 that was to the Tom Dienhart article on the BIg Ten Network website regarding the conference’s future schedules (which has since been removed, but I downloaded it before they did it), it looks like Big Ten teams still have a number of non-conference commitments in 2020, with fewer in 2021. If the conference wants to start moving up more games into the first three weeks of September, we may have to wait until then.

        FWIW, here’s Michigan’s future schedules from that file coupled with what the Eastern Division games would be if the rotation held beyond the published schedules (i.e., from 2020 to 2023).

        A couple of things to note. That file lists specifically says “vs Florida”, whereas all the home games listed on it just has the opponent’s name with no words in front of it. That would seem to indicate the game with the Gators could be at a neutral site (Chick-FIl-A Bowl has mentioned they would like to get Michigan in the future and a game against UF would fit the opponent profile they’re seeking.)

        The current 2016 Michigan schedule has Ball State on it, but this file puts that game into 2018. The UM 2016 home schedule per that file has the Wolverines playing Hawaii, Central Florida and Colorado before taking a bye week prior to the home conference opener with Wisconsin.

        It also looks like that starting in 2018 and going at least through 2023, Michigan will have alternating years of eight and six home games. While the schedules haven’t been finalized (this is a working file), that would make sense given the timing and locations of the home-and-home series with Arkansas,Virginia Tech and UCLA coupled with the 5/4 rotation of Big Ten games.

        2017 (6 Home, 6 Away, 1 Neutral)

        9/2 – vs Florida (Neutral Site?)
        9/9 – CINCINNATI
        9/16 – AIR FORCE
        9/23 – at Purdue
        9/30 – Bye
        10/7 – MICHIGAN STATE
        10/14 – at Indiana
        10/21 – at Penn State
        10/28 – RUTGERS
        11/4 – MINNESOTA
        11/11 – at Maryland
        11/18 – at Wisconsin
        11/25 – OHIO STATE

        2018 (8 Home, 4 Away)

        9/1 – ARKANSAS
        9/8 – BALL STATE
        9/15 – SOUTHERN METHODIST
        9/22 – NEBRASKA
        9/29 – at Northwestern
        10/6 – MARYLAND
        10/13 – WISCONSIN
        10/20 – at Michigan State
        10/27 – Bye
        11/3 – PENN STATE
        11/10 – at Rutgers
        11/17 – INDIANA
        11/24 – at Ohio State

        2019 (6 Home, 6 Away)

        8/31 – at Arkansas
        9/7 – HOME TBD
        9/14 – HOME TBD
        9/21 – at Wisconsin
        9/28 – Bye
        10/5 – IOWA
        10/12 – at Illinois
        10/19 – at Penn State
        10/26 – RUTGERS
        11/2 – at Maryland
        11/9 – Bye
        11/16 – MICHIGAN STATE
        11/23 – at Indiana
        11/30 – OHIO STATE

        2020 (8 Home, 4 Away)

        9/5 – HOME TBD
        9/12 – HOME TBD
        9/19 – VIRGINIA TECH

        Home Eastern Division Games: PENN STATE, MARYLAND, INDIANA

        Road Eastern Division Games: at Rutgers, at Michigan State, at Ohio State

        2021 (6 Home, 6 Away)

        9/4 – HOME TBD
        9/11 – HOME TBD
        9/18 – at Virginia Tech

        Home Eastern Division Games: RUTGERS, MICHIGAN STATE, OHIO STATE

        Road Eastern Division Games: at Penn State, at Maryland, at Indiana

        2022 (8 Home, 4 Away)

        9/3 – HOME TBD
        9/10 – UCLA
        9/17 – HOME TBD

        Home Eastern Division Games: PENN STATE, MARYLAND, INDIANA

        Road Eastern Division Games: at Rutgers, at Michigan State, at Ohio State

        2023 (6 Home, 6 Road)

        9/2 – at UCLA
        9/9 – HOME TBD
        9/16 – HOME TBD

        Home Eastern Division Games: RUTGERS, MICHIGAN STATE, OHIO STATE

        Road Eastern Division Games: at Penn State, at Maryland, at Indiana

        One more item. Here’s a list of teams from the Big Ten West that are on the schedule starting 2016 and those who are off of it.

        2016

        On: WISCONSIN, ILLINOIS, at Iowa

        Off: Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue

        2017

        On: at Purdue, MINNESOTA, at Wisconsin

        Off: Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Northwestern

        2018

        On: NEBRASKA, at Northwestern, WISCONSIN

        Off: Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Purdue

        2019

        On: at Wisconsin, IOWA, at Illinois

        Off: Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue

        It’s interesting to note that Wisconsin will be the one opponent on the schedule each of those four years from the western division.

        Wisconsin (4) – 2016 (Home), 2017 (Away), 2018 (Home), 2019 (Away)

        Illinois (2) – 2016 (Home), 2019 (Away)

        Iowa (2) – 2016 (Away), 2019 (Home)

        Minnesota (1) – 2017 (Home)

        Nebraska (1) – 2018 (Home)

        Northwestern (1) – 2018 (Away)

        Purdue (1) – 2017 (Away)

        • Richard says:

          Michigan may price the 6 & 8 home game packages the same, essentially saying that the MSU and OSU home games are worth double a regular home game.

          • cutter says:

            It’ll be interesting to see what David Brandon does with the non-conference schedule when Michigan has six home games in 2019, 2021 and 2023. He knows the three Big Ten Eastern Division home opponents (Ohio State, Michigan State, and Rutgers) and he also knows he’ll get one B1G Western Division team in Ann Arbor (Iowa in 2019, TBD for 2021 & 2023).

            To make the home schedule attractive (and to make the tickets really worth it), he’ll really have to work to bring in two relatively compelling teams that are willing to pay for play and no return date. He did schedule two Pac 12 teams (Oregon State, Colorado) for games in Ann Arbor in the 2015 and 2016 seasons, but will he be able to do that going forward? As long as Brigham Young stays independent, I can see them as a possibility (BYU is the Notre Dame “replacement” for UM in 2015 after ND cancelled the series with Michigan). After that, you’re probably looking at willing schools from the American Athletic, Mountain West and Conference USA to fill in the blanks. Recent past and future schools include Air Force, San Diego State, UNLV, SMU, Central Florida, Cincinnati and UConn (although that was a home-and-home series).

            Now that Michigan men’s basketball has gotten back to where it’s nationally recognized, I could see him using the possibility of a game with them as an inducement (which is what happened with the deal for the 2017 Cincinnati football game) for a team to send its football team to Ann Arbor without a return date (if necessary).

        • Brian says:

          cutter,

          “It’s interesting to note that Wisconsin will be the one opponent on the schedule each of those four years from the western division.”

          For OSU it’s NE. I’m guessing that means PSU got IA.

          • cutter says:

            Brian-

            You would be correct on Penn State and Iowa playing one another annually from 2016 to 2019.

            Here’s the pairings for that time four-year time frame:

            Michigan – Wisconsin
            Ohio State – Nebraska
            Penn State – Iowa
            Michigan State – Northwestern
            Rutgers – Illinois
            Maryland – Minnesota

            Since Indiana-Purdue is a protected cross-division rivalry, they play one another each season.

            I don’t think it’d surprise anyone to note that Rutgers and Maryland will have either Michigan or Ohio State at home one season, then flip the other. The conference obviously wants to make sure those two schools make at least one trip to those two school’s locations each year. The same goes for Michigan State and Penn State IRT their alternating locations between Rutgers and Maryland. Finally, when Rutgers hosts Maryland or when Maryland hosts Rutgers, those teams then go on the road to Indiana.

            If everything holds in terms of conference membership and the B1G scheduling strategy, etc. then for the 2020 to 2023 seasons, I could imagine a scenario where those pairings “flip” so that it’s perhaps Michigan-Nebraska, Ohio State-Wisconsin, Penn State-Northwestern, Michigan State-Iowa, Rutgers-Minnesota and Maryland-Illinois. If PSU emerges from sanctions as a top program again, maybe they would get Nebraska in lieu of Michigan, for example, and UM would get Northwestern.

          • Brian says:

            cutter,

            “You would be correct on Penn State and Iowa playing one another annually from 2016 to 2019.

            Here’s the pairings for that time four-year time frame:

            Michigan – Wisconsin
            Ohio State – Nebraska
            Penn State – Iowa
            Michigan State – Northwestern
            Rutgers – Illinois
            Maryland – Minnesota

            Since Indiana-Purdue is a protected cross-division rivalry, they play one another each season.”

            OK, makes sense so far. I think this pattern follows Richard’s script for how the rotation will work. As I recall, he said the top teams would have 1 locked top opponent for 6 years at a time, play the other 2 3 times and play the rest once every 4 years . I’m sure he’ll correct me if I’m remembering incorrectly.

            18 = 6 locked + 2 * 3 top + 4 * 1.5 bottom

            “The same goes for Michigan State and Penn State IRT their alternating locations between Rutgers and Maryland.”

            MSU fans are thrilled. I’m sure PSU fans are, too. Are you sure you don’t want to revive the land Grant Trophy game to end the season?

            “If everything holds in terms of conference membership and the B1G scheduling strategy, etc. then for the 2020 to 2023 seasons, I could imagine a scenario where those pairings “flip” so that it’s perhaps Michigan-Nebraska, Ohio State-Wisconsin, Penn State-Northwestern, Michigan State-Iowa, Rutgers-Minnesota and Maryland-Illinois. If PSU emerges from sanctions as a top program again, maybe they would get Nebraska in lieu of Michigan, for example, and UM would get Northwestern.”

            As Delany described it, OSU/MI/PSU should rotate against NE/WI/IA for the first iteration of the scheduling. After 18 years, they may change it based on recent performance. Likewise, MSU/RU/UMD should rotate against NW/MN/IL.

    • cutter says:

      Before they took the link down, Tom Dienhart’s future schedule analysis from today had an Adobe Acrobat sheet on it with more information on the future schedules.

      Michigan had an opening game with Florida listed for 2017. This could possibly be a neutral site game during that Labor Day weekend (Chick-Fil-A in Atlanta?). UM also had a home-and-home with UCLA in 2022/3.

    • frug says:

      Illinois has Northwestern, Wisconsin and Nebraska all on the same home and away schedule. That really likely to hurt their value of their season ticket packages when those are all away games.

      • @frug – Yeah, that sort of blows, although I’d say that Iowa is a bigger ticket draw than Northwestern and we get the Hawkeyes at home when NW/WI/NU are away. I do really wish Nebraska and Wisconsin were on different rotations. The real killer is that Ohio State and Michigan are the biggest draws of them all for us and they’re going to be in Champaign in the same years as NW/WI/NU (2016 and 2019, respectively).

    • Wainscott says:

      Makes sense also in this context:

      Any potential B1G expansion announced in 2015-2016 (when conference TV deals are up for renewal) would probably take effect July 1, 2020.

      July 1 is the date past expansions/conference moves have taken effect.

  60. ccrider55 says:

    The selection committe:

    Here are the 13 members, courtesy of reporting by ESPN and the Associated Press:

    • Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez

    • Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Gould, a former Air Force Academy superintendent

    • USC athletic director Pat Haden

    • Former NCAA executive vice president Tom Jernstedt

    * Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long (chairman)

    • West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck

    • Former NFL and Ole Miss quarterback Archie Manning

    • Former Nebraska coach/athletic director Tom Osborne

    • Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich

    • Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

    • Former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese

    • Former USA Today reporter Steve Wieberg

    • Former Stanford/Notre Dame/Washington coach Tyrone Willingham

    • duffman says:

      The selection committee:

      B1G favorable votes?
      • Barry Alvarez – B1G coach
      • Michael Gould – Grew up in B1G country
      • Tom Jernstedt – Worked in B1G country
      * Jeff Long (chairman) – Grew up in OH and worked at UM
      • Oliver Luck – Grew up in B1G country
      • Tom Osborne – Nebraska is now in the B1G
      • Dan Radakovich – Grew up in B1G country
      • Tyrone Willingham – played in B1G

      PAC favorable votes?
      • Michael Gould – Living in PAC media market, might vote with Rice
      • Pat Haden – PAC AD
      • Tom Jernstedt – Born, raised, and educated in PAC
      • Condoleezza Rice – PAC educator
      • Tyrone Willingham – coached in PAC

      If they work in tandem I can see the B1G and PAC getting at least 2 of the 4 slots every year. The SEC looks to be in the worst spot with only Manning to vote SEC if things get heated between 2 competing schools from 2 conferences. ACC and the Big 12 may be the most at risk of not getting a team in and not having enough core votes to create a voting block. Looks like Delany should be very happy with this gang of 13.

      • Tom says:

        It doesn’t work that way. It will come down to highly scrutinized and publicized decisions with little room for blatant bias (or the whole thing will blow up).

        • duffman says:

          There has been no statement of how transparent this will be. For years the basketball committee worked without full transparency and if the weekly BCS poll is gone what transparency will there be? I think it has already been discussed that they will not use this season as a public “trial run” so we can all get a feel for how it will work next year. Has this stand been changed and I missed it?

          The mission of the BCS was simple in just getting #1 to play #2 and we had the weekly BCS poll and shows discussing progress week by week. The word is already out that the public will not have access to how each voter voted nor will the public be privy to what information is used to cast those votes.

          From the actual comments :
          At the same time, the playoff press release indicated that committee members “will have flexibility to examine whatever data they believe is relevant to inform their decisions.”

          If the new committee really wanted full transparency they should do a trial run for the remaining part of this season as they would for next year but release it after the final BCS this year so as not to influence this year. In essence, do this year what they would next year and secure them so they can not be changed and then release this data say the second or third week of December 2013 for full transparency. It would show how the process worked and it would give outsiders a year to develop models for 2014 similar to all the different computer polls out there.

          Any system can be gamed and Delany has a duty to game the system in the favor of the B1G. Unlike everybody else in the process the B1G has lots of eyeballs and ensuring at least 1 B1G school makes a 4 team playoff every year is just good for business. I would love to think this was all about what is best for the game but this is all about the money and who can argue that the B1G does not bring big money to the table? No matter what they say, I am willing to bet that a decade from January 2015 looking back will show a decided slant for teams that make the most money by being in the 4 team playoff. Ohio State, Southern Cal, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, and Alabama bring big money out for a game and another half dozen or so schools are not far behind. Everybody talks Cinderella but it still comes down to lots of fans with fat wallets to fill the stands.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            If the new committee really wanted full transparency they should do a trial run for the remaining part of this season as they would for next year but release it after the final BCS this year so as not to influence this year.

            If the new committee wanted full transparency . . . they would be transparent when it actually counts. Running a meaningless shadow poll this year would tell you nothing. There are too many variables in a college football season to develop a “model” based on one trial run. That’s why the BCS formula was tweaked so many times during its existence.

            The main problem with a trial run is that it would be acutely embarrassing if the committee recommended a different top two teams than the BCS standings did. I don’t think you get enough value out of a trial run to overcome that. And how serious would the committee be, if they were voting on selections that didn’t matter?

            I do have concerns about how the committee will work, but I think they were wise to ditch the trial run idea.

            What I mainly wonder about, is how conflicts will be dealt with. They’re picking 12 bowl teams. If Wisconsin is a plausible candidate for any one of those slots, how does Barry Alvarez even join the conversation? I assume he wouldn’t blatantly homer for the Badgers. But if Oklahoma State is one of the candidates for a spot, anything he says about them (unless of course it’s positive) is a back-door boost for Wisconsin’s chances.

            Much of that committee has similar conflicts, perceived or actual, involving teams that are likely to be in frequent contention. (I don’t take issue with the Air Force guy; the odds that a service academy would reach a major bowl are sufficiently low not to worry about.)

          • vp19 says:

            Which in turn will lead to the eventual adoption of an 8-team playoff, with five automatic slots going to the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC champions to lessen the bias given to “brand names.”

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Which in turn will lead to the eventual adoption of an 8-team playoff, with five automatic slots going to the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC champions to lessen the bias given to “brand names.”

            An 8-team playoff will happen, but not because of that. I mean, even with 8 teams, the selection of the remaining three is a huge decision, as is the seeding. So you’re not really solving the problem.

            What I think is more likely, is that over time the committee will become more transparent. The NCAA basketball committee, for instance, relies (partially) on RPI. There have been some criticisms of this metric, but at least everyone knows what it is.

          • duffman says:

            Much of that committee has similar conflicts, perceived or actual, involving teams that are likely to be in frequent contention. (I don’t take issue with the Air Force guy; the odds that a service academy would reach a major bowl are sufficiently low not to worry about.)

            See that is the real core issue. Nobody expects a Service Academy to reach the playoff but it would be foolish to think life experiences will not surface even if it is unintentional. The guy grew up in the B1G so his childhood memories are probably about childhood B1G power schools. He spent time in Washington as did Rice so they have a shared base to draw from. The Service Academies play Notre Dame often enough and his age puts him in the group that remember the good years for the Irish. He has been living out west which means his news will have slants to the B12 and now the PAC.

            All these things will color decisions. Even if they are not intentional it would be foolish to say they do not exist. If I am a team in Georgia (Georgia and Georgia Tech), South Carolina (Clemson and S Carolina) , or Florida (Miami, Florida, and Florida State) in the mix with Notre Dame or Stanford and everything else looks equal it would not surprise me if the vote was for the Irish or the Cardinal over the ACC or SEC school.

            Which in turn will lead to the eventual adoption of an 8-team playoff, with five automatic slots going to the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC champions to lessen the bias given to “brand names.”

            This sadly is probably the end game. While 4 teams may be better than 2, if they go to 8 they are just doing it for the money. Nobody would argue Alan’s Tigers played one of the toughest schedules in in recent memory in 2011. We can all debate if they should have played Oklahoma Sate or Alabama till the cows come home, but to say they should have played Arkansas or Oregon again seems foolish. Here were the top 8 in the BCS that season :

            1 LSU : Beat #5 Oregon in TX 40-27 : Beat #6 Arkansas 41-17
            2 Alabama 11-1 : Only loss was FG game with LSU
            3 Oklahoma State 11–1 : Could make argument for Oklahoma State.
            4 Stanford 11–1 : Could make argument for Stanford (since not replay like Ducks)
            5 Oregon 11–2 = Should not have been in playoff discussion
            6 Arkansas 10–2 = Should not have been in playoff discussion
            7 Boise State 11–1 = Only played 2 quality teams all season
            8 Kansas State 10–2 = Should not have been in playoff discussion

            Nobody should argue LSU did not deserve a spot
            Nobody should argue Alabama was not in the Top 4 at the end
            Nobody should argue Stanford or Oklahoma State had an argument

            Since Stanford and Oklahoma State went to OT in the Fiesta Bowl you can at least argue they were evenly matched with each other and may have been interchangeable as the opponent in the game with LSU if Alabama was not in. If either were in at least it would have settled who was the winner between the B12, PAC, and SEC. The argument of Alabama replaying LSU has at least some legs based on the game being close and neither team crossing the goal line with football in hand. Having said all that…

            If Arkansas wanted in, then beat LSU the first time or be close
            If Oregon wanted in, then beat LSU the first time or be close
            If Kansas State wanted in, then beat Oklahoma & Oklahoma State
            If Boise State wanted in, then don’t schedule Toledo, Tulsa, and Fresno State

            If you argue for more than 4 teams playing for the MNC that season you just devalue the fact LSU was 13-0 – including the SEC CCG – while beating the PAC winner and the Big East winner and was the only undefeated FBS team in the country heading into the bowl season. There was no need for a championship game and there was no need for a playoff based on this point. When you start saying a 2 loss team should get another shot at an undefeated team you start to sound like the “everybody gets a ribbon” or “everybody gets a second chance” crowd.

          • bullet says:

            By your argument, Alabama shouldn’t have an argument. LSU won in Tuscaloosa. Oregon lost in an early season neutral site game dominated by LSU fans in which they outgained LSU (LSU won the turnover battle).

            An 8 game playoff that year with champs included would include LSU, Oklahoma St., Oregon, Clemson, Wisconsin and almost certainly Alabama and Stanford. Boise would probably have been #8.

          • vp19 says:

            If a non-”brand name” wins one of the five BCS conference titles, they should be in, no matter what; that’s the principal advantage of an 8-team playoff. With a 4-team playoff, or an 8-team playoff without five automatic slots, the likes of Washington State, Iowa State, Wake Forest, Mississippi State and Indiana are behind the 8-ball 99 out of 100 times, even if they win their conference with a good, but not necessarily unbeaten record; they don’t have the margin for error that Southern Cal, Texas, Florida State, Alabama or Michigan do. And for those who bring up the possibility of multiple non-”brand names” winning power conference titles in the same year, well, how often has that happened?

          • duffman says:

            By your argument, Alabama shouldn’t have an argument. LSU won in Tuscaloosa. Oregon lost in an early season neutral site game dominated by LSU fans in which they outgained LSU (LSU won the turnover battle).

            I am not making the argument if it should have been Alabama, I am arguing Alabama should have been in the 4 somewhere. LSU and Alabama were close the whole game and it was decided in OT by a FG, so a rematch was within the realm of a rematch. Having LSU replay Arkansas made no sense as Arkansas had 2 losses and the game was done by halftime. So no suspense for a rematch. The same applied to Oregon, as they lost @ HOME to Southern Cal AND their game was over by halftime with LSU so a rematch was pointless. The final score may have been 27-40 (roughly 2 TD spread) but that was only from 2 late scores by the Ducks when the game was well out of hand. Take away those 14 points and the score is 13-40 and nobody is going to get big advertising demand from a rematch.

            The Tigers could have played Stanford (new game) or Oklahoma State (new game) over Alabama (close rematch) and I am OK with any of those 3 games but playing the Ducks a second time with that disparity in game play and the 2 losses and I say no way. In essence Arkansas, Oregon, and Kansas State lost their place in line for a MNC run with 2 losses. This is the crux of the issue of the worse team (record) winning their conference but still getting a MNC shot. If you want to play for the MNC win the most games and play a decent schedule!

            Probably the best way for that year to play out was :

            LSU vs Oklahoma State (angle Les Miles coached both)
            Stanford vs Alabama (angle Cardinal vs Crimson only meeting for 3rd time)
            Winners play each other for MNC

            .

            .

            An 8 game playoff that year with champs included would include LSU, Oklahoma St., Oregon, Clemson, Wisconsin and almost certainly Alabama and Stanford. Boise would probably have been #8.

            LSU 13-0 = yes
            Oklahoma State 11-1 = yes
            Oregon 11-2 = no, 2 losses and lost badly to LSU
            Clemson 10-3 = hell no, 3 losses in regular season
            Wisconsin 11-2 = no, 2 losses
            Alabama 11-1 = yes
            Stanford 11-1 = yes
            Boise State 11-1 = no, playing only 2 tough teams and losing 1 means NO

            The fact you even included Clemson is proof in the pudding why we should NEVER go to an 8 game playoff. Clemson was good but not great so why reward a team not reaching greatness to have a shot at the MNC which is greatness? It is why I watch college football over the pros anymore because EVERY game matters on the path to the MNC. If you start watering that objective down just to play more games for the sole purpose of money then you are killing the golden goose in the long term. The reason for the CCG’s is not to create MNC’s but to create more cash for the conferences. If you want to play for the MNC then play hard every game during the season and outwork the team who does not. Clemson in 2011, SERIOUSLY!?

            .

            If a non-”brand name” wins one of the five BCS conference titles, they should be in, no matter what; that’s the principal advantage of an 8-team playoff. With a 4-team playoff, or an 8-team playoff without five automatic slots, the likes of Washington State, Iowa State, Wake Forest, Mississippi State and Indiana are behind the 8-ball 99 out of 100 times, even if they win their conference with a good, but not necessarily unbeaten record; they don’t have the margin for error that Southern Cal, Texas, Florida State, Alabama or Michigan do. And for those who bring up the possibility of multiple non-”brand names” winning power conference titles in the same year, well, how often has that happened?

            I agree, with the stipulation that undefeated (or fewest losses) are the rule with no exceptions. If Indiana goes 12-0, then wins the B1G CCG (what heaven must be like) then yes they should get a slot in a 4 team playoff. However, if they go 12-0 playing a weak schedule (like Boise State) or if they go 12-0 and do not have to play the 13th game (like Baylor) then you have to step back and look at the bigger picture. If Indiana goes 10 – 2 and then wins the B1G CCG, then no they should not get to a playoff game. They should not get to the top for good performance but only get to the top for GREAT performance.

            If the playoff possibilities were ranked, it may look like this :

            Go 12-0 + schedule well + win CCG 1-0 = 13-0 or 4 team playoff gold
            Go 12-0 + schedule well = 12-0 or 4 team playoff silver
            Go 12-0 + poor schedule (-1 penalty) = 11-1 or 4 team playoff bronze

            How many years has the BCS era existed?
            How many years has the BCS MNC game existed? 1998 – 2013 = 15 years?
            How many years in the BCS era did we have 4 undefeated teams?

            As long as you have 1 undefeated team every season you have the guideline for all the other teams under them. The issue then becomes what happens if there are no undefeated teams (after the CCG’s) but prior to the bowls / play offs. At that point you are just placing the 1 loss teams and the same principles apply :

            Go 11-1 + schedule well + win CCG 1-0 = 12-1 or 4 team playoff gold
            Go 11-1 + schedule well = 11-1 or 4 team playoff silver
            Go 11-1 + poor schedule (-1 penalty) = 10-2 or 4 team playoff bronze

            If you have 2 losses or more during the regular season and you do not win your CCG, and you play a weak schedule you do not get into the 4 team playoff. Simple as that! Everybody wants a MNC but they want to leave a loophole for their team if they are not in it. This is human nature and easy to understand but it is still treating the A- or B+ teams like A+ teams when their play does not reflect it. I do not want my MNC based on the curve, I want my MNC to be the best of the best by playing and beating the best.

            Screw the 8 team playoffs as pure advocacy for mediocrity!

          • Wainscott says:

            I am waiting for the controversy when the #4 team in the polls is passed over by the committee members using the eyeball test because of key injuries in the final game that reduce the likelihood of the team doing well in the playoff.

            For example, Texas A&M wins the SEC Championship Game, is ranked #3 but is passed over because of injuries to Manziel and another key player suffered in the title game.

          • bullet says:

            Good thought. Does key injuries mean you get discounted? Or only get the benefit of a key injury contributing to a bad performance in a particular game? Does Texas get the 2009 BCS title since Case McCoy got injured early in the 1st quarter with a lead?

          • ccrider55 says:

            Injuries already influence. How else does an unnamed team leapfrog Cal while on a bye and one loss Cal (17-23, @ 13-0 USC) wins a mud game at Southern Miss in spite of losing star RB early?

  61. frug says:

    http://www.sportsmancave.com/big-xii-mulls-expansion-decides-to-wait/

    Dude says no Big XII expansion until GOR expires unless it needs to add a CCG to avoid facing discrimination from the playoff committee.

    • David Brown says:

      Frug, these comment speaks volumes to Dude’s credibility.
      “Once the Big XII is solidified by being one of the only five conferences in the new division it can survive any coming defections.”
      “What I’m certain of is that in 12 years when the Big XII’s grant of rights expires it will lose at least four members and perhaps as many as five or six. If that happens then the door opens wide for several deserving schools to join the party.”
      In other words, if Texas and Oklahoma left the Big XII, lets say for the PAC (with Texas Tech and Oklahoma State), and they get replaced by some combination of Boise State, Brigham Young, Central Florida, Cincinnati, Connecticut, and South Florida, the BIG XII would survive THAT? Under that scenario, I could actually see Boise remaining with, and BYU joining the Mountain West. Thus, becoming a bigger Conference than the AAC oops Big XII, and then how fast would Kansas pack their Hoop Program and head straight for the B10?

      • ccrider55 says:

        I was going to post something similar, but I needed to stop laughing before I could.

        Thanks for adding levity to the day frug.

      • frug says:

        To fair, he doesn’t who he thinks will leave and the conference could survive the defection of anyone except for Texas and Oklahoma (and maybe Kansas). The problem I’m having is finding four Big XII members that other conferences would be interested without UT or OU.

        • Brian says:

          He may envision the B12 name surviving since it’s the bigger brand while the conference is basically a merger of the B12 remnants and the best of the MWC or the AAC.

      • ccrider55 says:

        David Brown:

        “…and then how fast would Kansas pack their Hoop Program and head straight for the B10?”

        Wouldn’t they need an invite?

        • David Brown says:

          CcRider, trust me the Jayhawks with their AAU membership, location (Next to Nebraska), and Basketball Legacy would be welcomed with open arms by the B10, because they exponentially strengthen the level, coverage and value of BTN’s Winter Programming Lineup. Lets be honest, I am one of the biggest Penn State Homers on this Board, but the spread between Kansas Hoops> Penn State hoops is > than Penn State Football >Kansas Football. You might even get BTN coverage in all 50 States (and this is from someone who puts Basketball FOURTH behind Football, Hockey & Baseball). I would bet the only reason they are not in the B10 now, is because they cannot free themselves of Kansas State. But if you have a Conference that has no Oklahoma, or Texas, and of course, Missouri & Nebraska, that job becomes a whole lot easier.

          • Wainscott says:

            @David Brown:

            While I agree that KU is a potential option for the Big Ten, and a very good option at that, I think its a bit of a stretch to say that KU hoops would potentially lead to BTN coverage in all 50 states. Presumably, you meant in all 50 states on the basic tier cable package. I don’t see KU hoops having nearly that level of impact–if it did, the definitely would have been invited already.

            I do agree though that the gap between KU hoops and PSU hoops is greater than the gap between the schools football programs. But again, if hoops mattered nearly as much as football, then KU would not have had to sweat out the potential implosion of the B12 a few years back with the threat of becoming homeless, and KU would have long ago moved to another conference.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            It’s a stretch to say that Kansas “would be welcomed with open arms,” given that the Big Ten could have had Kansas at any time (prior to the Big XII GOR), and as far as we know, it wasn’t seriously pursued.

            If the Big Ten would take them at all, obviously it would have to be with someone else, so you’d have to evaluate a pair of schools, not KU alone. I can envision scenarios where it would happen, but it’s not a slam dunk.

          • mushroomgod says:

            There are issues with Kansas.

            First, if added they’d essentially be tied for last in the league with NEB in terms of academics….the last 3 schools added included two academic middleweights and one lightweight…..schools like UM, NW, ILL, and WIS would prefer schools like VA, UNC, GT or even U Conn. Also, KU is a relatively small school…….in terms of enrollment, somewhere between NEB and MO.

            Second, the football product has already been weakened by adding MD….KU is another IU in football. This is an especially big problem because the other obvious prospect, other than MO, is U Conn, with it’s 40000 seat stadium and mediocre football history.

            Unless the BIG is really desperate for those 15th and 16th teams, I’m just not feelin’ KU.

          • Brian says:

            mushroomgod,

            “There are issues with Kansas.

            First, if added they’d essentially be tied for last in the league with NEB in terms of academics….the last 3 schools added included two academic middleweights and one lightweight…..schools like UM, NW, ILL, and WIS would prefer schools like VA, UNC, GT or even U Conn.”

            Since when is UConn considered a better school than KU by the B10? KU is AAU and UConn isn’t close. They are ranked similarly by THE and ARWU, but AAU status is a clear separator.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Actually, the Dude is talking sense for about the first half of the piece. He’s explaining why the Big XII does not want to expand (financially), and that he doesn’t think the playoff committee will “penalize” worthy Big XII teams who don’t have to face a CCG.

      He runs off the rails in the last part of it, where he’s not citing any source and just making stuff up.

      • bullet says:

        Its when he tries to reason about these things that its clear he doesn’t understand. Based on who he’s had on his radio show, he really does have some good connections. But I don’t think he has a filter.

      • ccrider55 says:

        I guess it presumably comes down to how SOS is weighted, and how much a CCG increases it. Not sure we can know until it is put into action and results can be measured, which will require a number of years unless they announce a bold, rigid SOS methodology.

        • Brian says:

          ccrider55,

          “I guess it presumably comes down to how SOS is weighted, and how much a CCG increases it. Not sure we can know until it is put into action and results can be measured, which will require a number of years unless they announce a bold, rigid SOS methodology.”

          Exactly. And they won’t have a rigid method, or else computers could do it.

          http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2013/10/16/college-football-playoff-selection-committee-criteria/2995953/

          Unlike during the BCS era, the committee will have the “flexibility to examine whatever data they believe is relevant to inform their decisions” rather than relying upon polls and computer rankings, the playoff said in a statement.

          To come to a consensus, the committee will use factors like a team’s win-loss record, strength of schedule, head-to-head results and conference standing. Hancock also said injuries will be factored into the committee’s decision, adding that no team “ends the season with the same team it started with.”

          The committee will meet several times in person during the year to evaluate teams in contention for the four spots in the playoff format. Four or five times each year, beginning midseason – roughly when the BCS rankings come out currently, Hancock said – the committee will release a list of its top-25 teams; it will then meet during “selection weekend” to announce the playoff pairings.

          The goal of the midseason poll – one that will serve only as a primer for the final selections – is to provide “a frame of reference,” Hancock said. The top-25 list will be compiled by the committee; the playoff will not publicize any individual ballots of committee members.

          Beyond deciding the four playoff teams, the committee will also determine the pairings for the three “contract bowls” – the Orange, Sugar and Rose Bowl – and the three “host bowls” – the Fiesta, Chick-Fil-A and Cotton Bowl. The national semifinals will rotate among these six bowls each year.

          In the future, members will serve three-year terms. The terms for the initial 13-person group will be staggered, however, so as to form a rotating panel of members.

        • Brian says:

          Also, the coaches are pushing for SOS to matter.

          http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2013/10/15/college-football-playoff-coaches-on-selection-committee-criteria/2989567/

          As the playoff prepares to formally introduce its initial committee members Wednesday, several coaches across the five power conferences say a team’s strength of schedule, the best measurement of the team’s road through the regular season, should be among the selection committee’s deciding components when selecting the four playoff-bound teams.

          “I would like to see the component of strength of schedule so we can go back to seeing great teams playing each other out of conference across the country,” Texas coach Mack Brown said. “I’ve always felt like that we need to get something in place that just doesn’t have to do with a conference champion from a weaker conference or doesn’t have to do with money. It has to do with pitting the best teams at the end of the year against each other.”

          To coaches, this would force would-be contending teams to schedule marquee opponents during non-conference play; in turn, this would help create a more clear picture of which teams belong in the playoff conversation – or, better yet, which teams do not.

          Relying on the strength of a team’s schedule – its 12- or 13-game résumé, in essence – could help the committee ignore “a political agenda” or outside influences like “the media or some relative statistic,” Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said, and “instead look at who’s playing against who.”

          “I guess I would like to see them use the win-loss percentage against teams that they played, so value the opponents but also the skill level that’s on the field,” he said.

          Bolstering the non-conference schedule with one marquee game against a program from another power league takes on added importance with the near-universal shift toward a nine-game conference schedule. The Pac-12 and Big 12 have already adopted the in-season format; the Big Ten and the SEC have alluded to a similar shift in the near future.

          Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre advocated for a strength of schedule component “like they do in basketball” and alluded to the “fine line” that the committee could face in weighing a team with a better record against weaker opponents against a team with a weaker record against better opponents.

          Having an FBS standard on conference games – having each major league play nine games, for example, and play three out-of-conference games – would give the selection committee the sort of empirical data it would need to settle on a final four teams, Stanford coach David Shaw said.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          The overwhelming question, in my mind, is how the Committee will put a value on “good losses”.

          Look at the current AP poll. All of the top five are undefeated, but they’ve all played one softie, and some have played two. Three of Ohio State’s six wins have come against non-BCS competition.

          Then you have one-loss A&M and LSU, but both have lost to top-15 teams; A&M to the #1. Both A&M and LSU have a considerably stronger SOS than Ohio State. After those two, four of the next five teams in the AP poll are undefeated, and again, some of them with extremely soft schedules, e.g., Louisville with the #125 schedule.

          Now, I only point this out because many of the people on the committee are the same types of people that have voted in polls in the past. There is just an overwhelming tendency to favor the undefeated team over the team with a “good” loss. That tendency can be overcome, at times, but it’s difficult.

          By the way, if the playoff started tomorrow and Sagarin were deciding, the top four would be Oregon, Alabama, FSU, and LSU. In fact, according to Sagarin, Ohio State wouldn’t get picked even if it were an 8-team playoff.

          (This isn’t an anti-OSU rant. My Michigan Wolverines were ranked until they lost to Penn State, but according to Sagarin, and I agree, they should have dropped out of the top 25 after they very nearly lost to Akron.)

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “The overwhelming question, in my mind, is how the Committee will put a value on “good losses”.”

            Yes, how they actually value SOS is key. I think they’ll do better than the AP and Coaches poll at doing it, but probably not quite as good as the computers.

            “Look at the current AP poll. All of the top five are undefeated, but they’ve all played one softie, and some have played two. Three of Ohio State’s six wins have come against non-BCS competition.”

            There is something to be said for winning all your games. Even if you have a 90% chance of winning each game, that’s only a 53% chance of being 6-0. OSU is now 18-0. Even at a 95% chance of winning each game the odds of that are less than 40%.

            I will fully agree OSU’s OOC schedule was soft, but will mention two factors in mitigation. Cal was a much better program when OSU scheduled them, and Vandy bailed out last November leading to the SDSU game. So OSU intended to play one really good OOC team, a mediocre AQ team, a MAC team and a I-AA. I offer zero defense of the I-AA game, especially the choice of team.

            “Then you have one-loss A&M and LSU, but both have lost to top-15 teams; A&M to the #1. Both A&M and LSU have a considerably stronger SOS than Ohio State.”

            But what are the SOS’s of their wins? Playing good teams and losing doesn’t prove you are good. LSU’s top win is over #22 UF, a team with tons of injuries on offense, and they also beat #24 Auburn. TAMU hasn’t beaten anyone getting even a single vote in the AP poll. OSU has beaten #25 WI and NW is also receiving votes. OSU’s cupcakes may have been worse, but the main SOS differences are the games those two lost. Would you value OSU more if they lost to Stanford OOC instead of beating Cal?

            “After those two, four of the next five teams in the AP poll are undefeated, and again, some of them with extremely soft schedules, e.g., Louisville with the #125 schedule.”

            UL and Baylor have played easy schedules, but they’ve also been blowing people out. Would the Patriots not be the best CFB team whether they played in the SEC or in the AAC? The schedule doesn’t prove how good you are necessarily, it proves what you have accomplished.

            “Now, I only point this out because many of the people on the committee are the same types of people that have voted in polls in the past. There is just an overwhelming tendency to favor the undefeated team over the team with a “good” loss. That tendency can be overcome, at times, but it’s difficult.”

            At this point in the season, we don’t really know which losses are good ones. And like I said above, it’s really hard to stay unbeaten even against an easy schedule. If you lose your toughest game, haven’t you just shown a potential ceiling for how good you are? Wins establish a floor for how good you are.

            “By the way, if the playoff started tomorrow and Sagarin were deciding, the top four would be Oregon, Alabama, FSU, and LSU. In fact, according to Sagarin, Ohio State wouldn’t get picked even if it were an 8-team playoff.”

            Yes, but all computer systems are really designed to be the most accurate only at the end of the year. More data increases their accuracy. 6 games per team really isn’t enough to settle the rankings down.

    • Transic says:

      Since we’re bringing up the West By Gawd bloggers, MHver has some interesting tweets today where he claims to have attended a workshop on the direction of college football. His summation is that the folks doing the presentation think that conferences will weigh CCG as much as OOC SOS when determining who goes to the playoff.

      Take that what you will but that’s what he says.

      • Brian says:

        He’s saying a lot of things.

        Oliver Luck has a 90% chance of being offered the UT AD job, apparently. FWIW, he says Luck would be totally against UT leaving the B12.

        Conference games may count more than OOC games. It’s 8/9 vs 4/3 – does he mean it’ll be more slanted than that?

        A CCG gets as much weight as the entire OOC SOS? In some ways that makes sense, as most teams only play 1 good OOC game and the other 2-3 games are easy wins. That definitely would hurt the B12, though.

        An important one – the B12 can expand to 12 at any time and keep the same payout per school. Fox told them this 2 years ago. Thus, if the CCG really is important to the committee, they have no good reason not to go to 12. If this is true, of course.

        • vp19 says:

          An important one – the B12 can expand to 12 at any time and keep the same payout per school. Fox told them this 2 years ago. Thus, if the CCG really is important to the committee, they have no good reason not to go to 12. If this is true, of course.

          If it is true, there will be plenty of cheering in Cincinnati, Storrs, Orlando and Tampa…although two of them ultimately would be disappointed. In a post-Dodds Big 12, expansion appears more likely — especially if Luck moves from Morgantown to Austin. His vote (or at least his powers of persuasion) could leave WVU stranded on less of an island.

          As for my percentages of whom might get the golden tickets of regular trips to Lubbock, Stillwater and Ames…

          Cincinnati – 95%. By now a fairly proven product in football, especially with Tuberville at the helm, a solid performer in basketball, and a large if not overwhelming market that should be receptive to a move to a top-tier conference a la Louisville with the ACC (while UC’s program admittedly is currently not as strong as UL’s).

          Connecticut – 55%. Hasn’t done much in football post-Edsall (to be fair, until this season Edsall hadn’t much post UConn, either), and the Calhoun sanctions still resonate. Plus, there’s a sense of resentment towards the Huskies from the college sports establishment, and I think many would like to isolate them in the American. Not great recruiting grounds, either.

          Central Florida, South Florida — 25% each. The Big 12 wouldn’t mind getting a foothold in recruiting-rich Florida (a possible replacement for Texas for schools such as Iowa State), but which gets the nod? USF has a slightly better tradition thanks to its years in the Big East, but UCF is coming on strong and may be growing faster than its in-state rival. I’d give an imperceptible edge to Central.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            If the Big XII expanded, I think it would almost certainly be Cincinnati and a Florida school. It’s not that there is any resentment towards UConn. It comes down to what it usually does, money. UConn doesn’t add enough value in football, and the XII is a football-first league.

            But I think the regular-season schedule format is a huge problem for the Big XII. Add any two schools, and try to come up with acceptable divisions. Oklah