Seth Emerson shared a scheduling proposal $$ where divisions are done away with and every team keeps four permanent rivals. Given the eight game SEC schedule that would leave four games to rotate between the ten remaining teams in the conference. In that scenario everyone plays everyone over the course of just a few seasons which sounds pretty great to me. As Emerson points out:
Texas A&M is entering its eighth season as a member of the SEC, or at least that’s the rumor, because as someone who covers Georgia I have never seen the Aggies play in person. The two schools have yet to play in football. And while they finally will this November, it won’t be until 2023 that Georgia goes to College Station.
Of course without divisions that leaves us with a conference championship game featuring an already established #1 against a #2 team. Which begs the question – What is the point in playing a championship game when the regular season has already separated out the best team (Looking at you Big 12)? Of course we all know the answer is television money, but that doesn’t make it any less stupid. Then again, I’ve been pretty clear that I believe most conference championship games to be largely a waste of time. It’s just that without divisions they become a guaranteed annual joke as opposed to a probable annual joke, but I digress.
I found myself wondering what Emerson’s proposal would look like on paper so I took the time to work out a rough draft of what each team’s four permanent opponents would (or could) be. These are in no particular order, but here’s what I came up with.
SEC 4-4 Schedule
- Georgia – Auburn, Florida, Tennessee, S Carolina
- Florida – LSU, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky
- S Carolina – Georgia, Missouri, Vanderbilt, Texas A&M
- Tennessee – Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Vanderbilt
- Kentucky – Miss State, Florida, Vanderbilt, Missouri
- Missouri – Arkansas, S Carolina, Kentucky, Miss State
- Vanderbilt – Ole Miss, S Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky
- Alabama – Auburn, LSU, Tennessee, Ole Miss
- Auburn – Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Arkansas
- LSU – Florida, Alabama, Auburn, Arkansas
- Texas A&M – Arkansas, Miss State, Ole Miss, S Carolina
- Arkansas – Auburn, Missouri, LSU, Texas A&M
- Ole Miss – Miss State, Texas A&M, Alabama, Vanderbilt
- Miss State – Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Kentucky, Missouri
I basically just kept the current cross division rivals for every team and I believe I was able to maintain all major rivalries. At first glance Texas A&M seems to have a fairly easy go of it in the guaranteed games while Tennessee has a pretty tough slate, although it’s no different that the one they play every year under the current system.
And before any of you get too excited about the prospect of a scheduling overhaul. Here’s Senator Blutarsky reminding us that the SEC doesn’t care about the fans.
The SEC’s real problem now isn’t the schedule. That’s the symptom, not the root cause. The real problem is that the conference doesn’t have a financial incentive to work up a fix. There’s no interest (other than from us fans, of course)
The sad thing is, he’s probably right.
See you at G-Day