Monday, November 7, 2011

Is the SEC the Charlie Brown of conference expansion?

As the insanity of college football conference expansion silliness winds down, it's natural to look for the winners and losers when it comes to who got what. In it's own way, college football is like the Trick-or-Treating segment of It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, where the Peanuts gang take time after every stop to see what goodies they've acquired. All the kids got treats, while all poor Charlie Brown in his ghost costume with more holes than needed got nothing but rocks.

The Big Ten got Nebraska. The Pac-12 got Utah and Colorado. The ACC got Pittsburgh and Syracuse.

The SEC got a rock...Texas A&M.

The Big 12 gets TCU and West Virginia. The Mountain West got Fresno State, Nevada, and Hawaii. The Big East is looking to add Boise State, Navy, Air Force, SMU, Houston, and Central Florida.

The SEC got a rock...Missouri.

Expansion for the SEC is looking more and more like a Pyrrhic victory, where the conference loses more than it gains. After a 9-4 record in 2010, Texas A&M looks like its back into its underperforming ways this season. Missouri certainly in underperforming this year, and takes the SEC further away from its traditional base of the Deep South. Just ask NASCAR if this is a good idea or not.  

 Expansion needs to be more than making money. It has to be about making a conference stronger and healthier. In absorbing the two Big 12 schools,  the SEC will be forced to make major changes such as realignment and scheduling.  Alabama has already expressed its desire to continue playing both Auburn and Tennessee, which could both wind up in the SEC East.

Those who claim to be in the know will say the SEC wins because of factors like getting into a couple of big markets. In this case, the rocks are obviously fool's gold, since Texas is effectively more of a Big 12 state, and more of a Longhorn state specifically. As for Missouri, fans are probably still busy celebrating the St. Louis Cardinals winning the World Series to care more than a few minutes.

The SEC is looking at major issues as it expands to fourteen teams. The results could possibly make the strongest of the conferences weaker in the end.

(via CBS Sports)

No comments: