With all the talk about conference realignment and potential "super" conferences, I wanted to take a look at the conferences as they actually are today and determine which ones are more super than the others.
History means everything and nothing in these type of projections. For instance, winning the last five national championships in a row gives the SEC the obvious nod as the top conference going into the 2011 season. The main question, most people are asking, is can they make it six?
However, instead of just looking back, I want to look at the present to rank the conferences.
How can we break down the conferences without just looking at recent bowl records, non-conference records and the like? Those figures can be greatly skewed based on who the conference actually had to play in those bowl and out-of-conference games.
Therefore, I am going to beak down each conference's current teams into five categories for 2011 (National Championship contenders, final AP Top 25 contenders, bowl game contenders, no bowl game but competitive, and bottom feeders) and use that snap-shot to power rank the conferences for the upcoming season.
Important Note: Each conference is broken down based on the teams status this season and NOT broken down by the status of their overall program.
While I realize this is not an exact science by any means and some teams could easily swap from one bucket to another, this is just a way to get a general snapshot view of the landscape of college football and not have to rely on past performances as the only way to rank the conferences for 2011.
Click through the following slide show to see how each conference fared...