It's Saturday in Athens

It's Saturday in Athens

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

SEC: "Red Rover, Red Rover, send Texas A&M (and Oklahoma) on over!!.. what Longhorn Network??"

The rumors are probably a good, solid 3 years old now. And in the last 48 hours I have seen or heard more rumors about Texas A&M attempting to knock down the doors of Mike Slive's office in search of an invite to join the SEC. While those rumors have seemed to be debunked, for now, I couldn't help but to put on my "what if" goggles.....

Love the creativity, and the desire
It makes complete sense that the embers of such rumors are being fanned more than ever at this time. With only 15 days until the Big 12's "Doomsday" (aka the launch of the Longhorn Network), the remaining members of the Big 12 (is that what they still refer to themselves as?) are feeling the heat to do something drastic to keep their competitive stance as well as money in their athletic association's pockets. And what better direction for A&M to look than to the SEC? 

I think it would be nothing but a good thing for the SEC to extend an invite to A&M. With College Station geographically located smack between Houston and Dallas, the SEC would cash in greatly by adding interest in those two major media markets. I don't care who has doubts about swaying the loyalties of longtime Big 12 faithfuls to the SEC, just wait and see what happens when the UGAs, Alabamas, Auburns, Floridas, LSUs, and Tennessees begin making trips out to College Station every week. The local TV's will be locked on way before they find the Texas/Baylor or Kansas State/Missouri games. And what better way for A&M to continue their success in recruiting the state of Texas, despite the Longhorn Network, by baiting their propaganda hook with the sweet smell of playing in a SEC schedule. Convince a kid of the massive, national exposure he will be getting in comparison to the mostly regional Longhorn Network. The addition of A&M would be a very profiting one. There are SERIOUS dollars to be made here, folks.

OK's feelings on the Longhorn Network
But the SEC shouldn't stop there. Before Oklahoma gets any ideas about a "Sooner Network", a signed, stamped, and sealed invitation to join the SEC should be hand delivered on a silver platter to the folks in the front offices in Norman, OK as well. This will provide the chance to maintain balance in the SEC conference divisions, as well as reel in yet another huge college media market in the state of Oklahoma. Just like the A&M scenario aforementioned, the SEC teams paying visit to Norman on a weekly basis could easily compete with the Longhorn Network game featuring Texas vs Rice, or Texas vs whatever teams they are going to have to start scheduling after they are bound to go Independent. Oklahomans already have a nice fued with Texans, and I believe the chance to divert attention from the Longhorn Network will be appealing to the rich talent pool in the state of OK. The Sooners would be a perfect fit for the SEC, so long as A&M agrees.

With 14 teams, I would also encourage the SEC to follow the lead of the Big 10, which will begin a 9 game conference schedule beginning in 2017. The model for how to do that can be found right here...

And while the SEC is reaping the unforeseen benefits the Longhorn Network is creating, I believe it is way past due to make a simple trade with the ACC to create the true super-conference the SEC is capable of being. Vanderbilt... put away your SEC logos. You've been traded for Virginia Tech. No conference in America likes to pound their chests while bringing academic arguments into a football debate like the ACC. Just tell a Georgia Techie that UGA "owns them on the football field" and sit back and listen to how their players "take calculus and design rockets", with no football rebuttal (see: any childish blog over at the ajc). Vanderbilt, with it's rich academic attributes, more than descent basketball program, and Nashville media market would be more than ideal for the ACC! And who doesn't find it appalling that an SEC school, Vanderbilt, doesn't even have an athletic department?! The SEC would continue to pull well in that area with the statewide Vol fanbase.

would look good in the SEC
Virginia Tech being the other part of the trade, would create another large, brand new media market for the SEC in northern Virginia and Washington, DC. And with the statewide fanbase of the Virginia Cavaliers, the ACC loses little in terms of viewership in this region. Virginia Tech is a very, very rich football tradition and power, which will only grow with the appeal and lure of the SEC and the schedule which will come its way. The ACC/SEC trade would truly be a win/win situation for both conferences.

While this idea is nothing more than my football driven mind creating a scenario as I watch a Braves game, I do feel it is a bit closer to reality than most would believe. I admit the Vandy/VT trade is the most unlikely, but would be completely awesome if it ever took place.

With the SEC reshaping itself in this manor, who would really need a playoff? Because there should be very little doubt that the Champion of that SEC, should have an automatic BCS bid..... in the BCS Championship Game, that is.

24 days til' kickoff!!

No comments:

Post a Comment