Conference Realignment: 4 Schools SEC Should Target
With the addition of Texas A&M to the SEC finally becoming official, conference commissioner Mike Slive seems to be saying that the conference is done expanding for the time being.
Sorry, Mike, but I'm not buying it. Sooner or later, there will be a straw that breaks the camel's back, and when it does, you can bet that the SEC will not be sitting there with its 13 teams and let the world as they know it crumble around them.
As the widely-considered best football conference in the nation, the SEC will likely be right in the thick of anything that goes down. With that in mind, here are four teams the SEC should target when they inevitably continue to expand.
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Most of the chatter seems to have Oklahoma heading to the current Pac-12 conference in an expansion move that would make it the Pac-16. In order for this to happen, though, Oklahoma would likely have to once again be stuck in the same conference as the Texas Longhorns.
Call me crazy, but I get the feeling the Sooners have had just about enough of playing second fiddle to Texas. A move to the SEC would likely do for Oklahoma what is has for Texas A&M: get the program out of the shadow of the University of Texas.
For the SEC, it makes sense, because adding Oklahoma would give them a major college football power, solidifying their status as the country's premier football conference. Furthermore, it would increase the conference's footprint on the western edge of its border.
Florida State Seminoles
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If the SEC makes a move to try and get Florida State to become a member, it would purely be a play based on ego. The SEC would essentially be a collector snatching up blue-blood programs.
Honestly, this move is probably not one that Florida State would be all that interested in. As long as the ACC remains stable, the Seminoles do not have much reason to leave. The one wild card in the whole situation is money.
When the SEC negotiates its new television deal, it is expected to blow all of the other recent deals out of the water. If the SEC comes calling, Florida State might see too many dollar signs to say no.
TCU Horned Frogs
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I know that TCU is headed for the Big East, but there might not be much of a Big East left when they get there. With the ACC pilfering Big East teams again, the conference TCU is set to join could very well be on the verge of collapsing.
With the Big 12 in just as much, if not more, jeopardy than the Big East, that is not a very viable option for the Horned Frogs either. If the Big 12 goes under as suspected, the state of Texas will be up for grabs, and that is quite the prize for the SEC, who has already acquired Texas A&M.
I expect the Pac-12 and SEC to battle over control of the state after the Big 12 dies, and this would be a move in that direction for the SEC.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
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I understand that, geographically, this makes no sense whatsoever. However, conferences are not about geography anymore—they are about markets.
Notre Dame is the biggest fish in the sea in terms of the market they bring to whatever conference they finally end up joining. The Fighting Irish may not be a powerhouse on the football field anymore, but they are still a cash cow.
At the end of the day, the SEC would make a killing if they could convince Notre Dame to join their conference.