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Expansion By The Numbers 1: Grading Potential SEC Partners

Admit it.  You’re as tired of reading about conference expansion and realignment as we are of writing about it.

It’s a confusing topic.  Half the sports fans and media members out there don’t seem to get it.  They reach for their atlas, look at last year’s bowl results, and trumpet schools that don’t add a dadgum thing to the SEC from a business perspective.  You can’t really blame them, of course.  When you’re sitting on a barstool next to your buddy talking football, do you spend more time talking about wins and losses or cable households and “geographic footprints?”  I know when I’m talking about the AAU with my pals, we’re not discussing the top research schools in North America.

But for those of you who in the last 18 months have come to understand that business factors really are driving this boat, it’s frustrating to hear people say it’s all about wins.  It’s confusing to hear someone on the radio push for 18- or 20-team leagues when the SEC has no desire to take on more than 14 schools.  It’s irritating for someone to claim academics have nothing to do with expansion, when the college presidents who’ll do the final voting in these matters are increasing entrance requirements and cutting down on oversigning, all for the sake of academic reputation.

So we’re going to try and put some hard and fast data together to help explain why School A is probably more attractive to SEC presidents than School B… even though School B might be able to whip School A’s rump on a football field.  We want to take all of those variables that are floating around out there and condense them into one, simple, quick series of posts.  A series of posts that you can use to draw your own conclusions.

Our “Expansion By The Numbers” series is based on some of the same information we used in May 2010′s “Expounding on Expansion” series.  You can go back and read that long piece in full right here.

At the time, the Big Ten had announced that it was looking to expand.  Many felt Jim Delany’s league would get to 16 teams.  As a result, the vast majority of writers put forth Clemson, Georgia Tech, Florida State and Virginia Tech as the most likely SEC partners in mega-expansion.  We crunched some numbers — much like the numbers we’ll be crunching this year — for 18 different schools and found that Texas and Texas A&M were far and away the most valuable from a cash perspective, not the four nearby schools that were viewed as “naturals.”  In May 2010, A&M was viewed as a tag-along that the SEC would take if it meant landing Texas.  Our numbers showed that wasn’t necessarily the case.

Eighteen months ago, Missouri wasn’t being mentioned as a potential SEC partner by the mainstream media at all.  But our review suggested they might be an excellent fit.  Turns out, the things we mentioned last year have now turned into key arguments for Mizzou’s potential acceptance into the conference.

And while most still thought the AAU was a summer basketball league, we showed that academics do matter in expansion… even from a financial perspective.

Were we right at every turn?  Nope.  (And we certainly didn’t spend enough time weeding out our typos.)  But our series did put forth some fresh views that have turned out to be right on the mark 18 months later.  That’s thanks to the good sources we spoke to, not our own ability as seers and futurists.  We were told to look here, consider this, investigate that.  We did.  And it turns out the response to our research piece was very positive from other people who have worked inside BCS-level athletic departments.  The categories we broke down were the areas that they say college administrators do consider when deciding on expansion.

This time around, we’ve spoken to more people — ’cause we’ve got more than a year’s worth of new sources — and we’ve decided to add some categories to the mix.  Are these criteria meant to definitively show you which schools the SEC should pursue?  I’m sorry, did I say pursue?  I meant “hope apply for membership.”  (You never know when Kenneth Starr is listening.)  No, this is not meant to say School A should be and will be the SEC’s 14th school.  It’s just meant to provide you with some information.  We’ll draw our own conclusions, but you can blow them off if you like.  We’re not trying to jam anything down anyone’s throat.  While Slive sits on his porch with a glass of whiskey and a cigar, he’s most likely not making notes off our website.

But from the people we’ve spoken to at the television network executive level, the senior management level of a leading media rights group, administrators at SEC institutions, former athletic department officials at BCS-level schools, and a couple of contacts inside the SEC offices… the categories we cover would’ve likely run across Slive’s mind at some point.

Here are the categories we’ll examine and why:

 

1.  Top 40 television markets within 200 miles of a campus — the more new TV households the better

2.  Total state population — the bigger a school’s footprint, the more potential viewers, fans, t-shirt buyers, future students, future alums, and future donors

3.  Proximity to Birmingham — the idea is to grow the league’s footprint when possible, but unlike some leagues, the SEC has shown no desire to go completely cross-country

4.  Fertile recruiting ground — this isn’t a deal-deciding issue, but it’s certainly a supplementary topic that deserves mentioning

5.  Athletic budget — let’s face it, if a school’s not serious about athletics, it doesn’t belong in the SEC

6.  Director’s Cup standings / Bowl and NCAA Tourney bids — it helps for said school to also be competitive in athletics

7.  Football stadium size — this provides a glimpse into a school’s overall quality of facilities as well as to its dedication to the SEC’s #1 sport

8.  Academic Fit / Cultural Fit / Powerhouse Brand — we’ll finish up with bonus points awarded to those schools that best fit the SEC’s existing profile

 

We’ve compared 35 different schools across these categories.  That’s twice as many schools as we examined last year, and frankly, we have no idea what the final tally will show.  You’ll be discovering right along with us.

And if there’s anyone out there — and we know there will be — who thinks we’ve either fixed the numbers to hurt your school’s score or finagled them to help some other school’s mark, think again.  We’ve barely had time to crunch the numbers period.  We certainly haven’t compiled them, ranked them and then tossed a few out for kicks.  We weren’t going to waste our time doing that.

So why 35 schools?  Because we wanted to cover every possible base.  In the last few weeks, we’ve been hounded by East Carolina fans — yes, we’ve all seen the “Undaunted” video by now.  We had to field questions because someone got the wild notion that Navy would be a good fit for the SEC.  Heck, last week even Joe Paterno mentioned rumors/thoughts that Penn State might want to turn east and leave the Big Ten.  So they’re all on our list.

All the schools from the ACC — including Pitt and Syracuse — are included.  All the Big 12 schools are counted (we’ve left Texas A&M in that group just to see how they would’ve stacked up against everyone else).  The six remaining Big East schools are tossed in for good measure.  We’ve also kicked in some oddball choices like Notre Dame and TCU just for kicks.

Will the SEC expand to Connecticut or Navy or Baylor?  No.  But it might be fun to see how they’d measure up against the Texas A&M’s, Missouris, and Florida States of the world.

Finally, it’s important to remember that while we believe that these categories are very important (because people in the business of expansion have told us so), this whole situation is fluid.  One league’s focus on academics might be stronger than another’s.  One league’s concern about television households might be huge today, not so huge tomorrow.

Let me give you an example.  In 1980, George Bush referred to Ronald Reagan’s economic plan as “Voodoo Economics” during the Republican primary campaign.  Bush lost.  But Reagan’s people knew he could provide the state of Texas and some much-needed foreign policy expertise to Reagan’s ticket.  Suddenly, that “Voodoo Economics” thing wasn’t real important anymore.

So how could that apply to the SEC’s situation?  We wrote weeks ago that West Virginia University was unlikely to be a top pick of the SEC because of its so-so academic reputation and the small number of residents and television households inside its state’s borders.  After getting blasted by a few WVU fans for disparaging their school — something we weren’t trying to do — word then leaked out that WVU had approached the SEC (and the ACC) and had been rebuffed.

But things can change.  Let’s say Missouri stays in the Big 12, the ACC remains stable, and next summer the SEC is staring a second-straight 13-team season in the face.  Suddenly, WVU’s #164 ranking among universities and its population of less than two million might not look so bad.

The lesson?  The categories we’re about to discuss matter.  All things being equal, some matter more than others.  But all things are seldom equal.  So instead of saying, “This is all about televisions; count those up and go with the biggest number,” it’s best to take a broader view.  It’s best to look at the whole picture.

We’ve tried to take our biases out of this.  That’s why it’s all about the numbers.  I personally would like to see the league stop at 14 schools and happily that’s what I’ve been told Slive wants to do.  But if the SEC went to 16, I’d like to see the following brought in: Texas A&M (it really was a perfect fit), Notre Dame (biggest brand in the country and who wouldn’t want to see the Irish come to town), Georgia Tech (an old school pick because I love the SEC history, Buckhead and The Varsity), and Virginia Tech (it’s Texas A&M to the east).

But Notre Dame’s a non-starter and Georgia Tech brings nothing new to the table (I suspect).  What I would like to see has no bearing on this series.  It’s all about the business.  And the business of television is a key force in expansionpalooza.  That’s where Part 2 will pick up next.

 


34 comments
haberstr
haberstr

What would be a brilliant move by the SEC is to offer Texas, OK State and Oklahoma membership. Wow, SEC establishes complete dominance of the Texas market! And Texas _should_ be overjoyed to rid itself forever of the Baylors and Texas Techs and, soon, Texas Christians of the state.

Ben
Ben

First of all I want to admit I am a WVU fan living in SEC country. Having said that Mizzouri is the best fit for the SEC overall. Missouri brings something that few school in the SEC bring; big time TV market and academics. The SEC needs little help in football getting viewership, but in basketball new viewership is important. The SEC also needs better academic institutions in conference. If any of this was driven by purely on the field issues, WVU would be probably the best fit of any highly possible school. They bring nothing new to the table for the conference as a whole: similar sizes of media market, state overall population, mediocre academics, etc. I do think though by the end of football season this will all be over. Missouri will have to make a decision by then and the Big 12 and ACC will decide how much more cherry picking of the Big East they plan on doing. If Missouri actually commits to stay in the BIg 12, the SEC has to reach out to WVU the next day, because there is not a better pick up available for the SEC.

Charlie
Charlie

Great series of articles. I do think there's also value in looking at another angle. The SEC already has a presence in Florida, Georgia, and now Texas. What's the value of effectively shutting the competition out of those markets by adding FSU, GT, and UT? If the SEC can't sway the top programs from states like NC, VA, and MD wouldn't it benefit as much or more by marginalizing the competition rather than growing in smaller markets or by adding the lesser schools in a desirable market?

Jeff Willis
Jeff Willis

I agree with most of what another blogger predicted: Missouri will come into the SEC. And after careful consideration, it makes sense. Missouri has a "southern soul." It would be a better fit in the SEC than the Big Ten. It it comes into the east(which is my prediction) it will play Kentucky, a potential border state rival) Vanderbilt and Tennessee every year. Chances are, Texas A & M and Arkansas might swap fixed "intra-divisional" opponents. As a result, A & M would play South Carolina every year. Arkansas would play Missouri every year. This seems to be preferable. Of course, the idea of playing nine conference games annually might not be such a hot idea! The alternative would be to expand to sixteen teams, which seems to be unpopular with most SEC members. However, if we added North Carolina State and Virginia Tech to Missouri, we would have two eight-team division, covering 13 states. I am not certain as to the political situation in North Carolina, but at first glance, it would seem that N.C. State would be a "big time winner" with this deal! They are located in a recruting hotbed. They would be the only SEC school in the state.

tide1957
tide1957

I picked #3 in your 'numbered list' "Proximity to Birmingham." I selected Columbia, SC for a proximity distance, which is 361 miles. Compare that to Columbia, MU which is 624 miles, or College Station, TX which is 683 miles, or Morgantown, WV which is 697 miles. That pretty much means any of the three most mentioned teams had better be able to fill their BIG stadiums, I doubt that many current SEC fans will travel that distance. Sure a few 'high rollers' that can afford to fly to games at any of those three locations may go. Which means that ESPN will have to expand the number of channels just to cover (7) SEC games. I doubt that any SEC fan will watch 7 games, or 28 hours of football. I watch up to 3 SEC televised games Saturday. Well, OK, my TV is on I sleep through some of 'em.

I just DON'T see where there will be any more fans, an more eyeballs, or any more anything gained by 'super conferences!' All this idiocy is for the almighty dollar, and it's NOT going to happen. All it will do is screw up the games and rivalries, and eventually dull-down the game. Shhh dumb- down everything too.

WVfan
WVfan

Sorry, but Mizzou is not coming to the SEC. Mizzou is content to sit in the Big12 unless the Big10 comes calling. The Big East football schools will likely make moves to different conferences at about the same. It will happen this year. That way, you can't hold them to the 27 month wait if there is no one to play. Pitt and Cuse screwed up the timing a little. They have never have been a team player. Louisville, Cinny and/or TCU are going to the Big 12. Uconn and maybe Rutgers to the ACC with Pitt and Cuse. WVU to the SEC because VA Tech won't leave ACC.

Jamie Thornton
Jamie Thornton

ALso, MOrgantown is 200 miles from the DC market and about 65 miles from the PIttsburgh market. Not trying to say WVU should get the nod. It's true that the state of West virginia doesn't have a lot of tv's. But lets be honest. West Virginia isn't a big state and it borders PA, MD, and DC. They're all in the same market of those places. SO if the only schools that plays in the SEC is in a 200 mile radius of DC, PIttsburgh, and the Maryland area is WVU; who do you think the best recruits are going to play for? SO really the tv numbers about West Virginia are bias. By the way, I'm not a West VIrginia fan. I'm an Arkansas fan who thinks we should take MIzzou. But this West Virginia doesn't have any tv's message people keep sending out is just not true.

Jamie Thornton
Jamie Thornton

John, maybe I'm wrong on this. But from what I understand, this wont be an issue by next summer. There is no way the sec is going to wait until next summer to pick someone. I'm sure they're not going to rush into things. But if they get a NO from MIzzou and nobody calls by the end of the year; I would think WVU is in by the start of next season. On top of that, WVU has to wait 27 months to leave the Big East.

Stan Cardwell
Stan Cardwell

there is one thing 16 gets you - that's a natural playoff system and with that $$$ that doesn't have to go to the "non-profit" bowls. 4 super conference championships, two semifinals and a championship. that could be a lot of money - TV and attendance. Including even greater interest in the superconference championships.

I appreciate your values/categories, but interested to see if there is a future aspect on 5 and 7 to your analysis - leatherhelmet leaked some conditional aspects for WVU - not hard to attain the upgrades if the school gets double the money from the SEC that it gets from the Big Least.

and also what weight you place on each one - geography, cultural fit, academics are not show-us-the-money values, but they do speak to chemistry. There are some good football schools that just do "look" like SEC schools.

Larry M.
Larry M.

The real reason WVU is not being seriously mentioned in the SEC and ACC talk has little to do with money, academics, etc. Let's be honest and look at the basketball programs, the growing football program, etc. What conference powers want is a school that won't challlenge the conference elite programs on the field or on the court. It's nothing more than keeping the Boise States, WVU's, and TCU's from overtaking and challenging the media and conferenc's love for the big name programs. Heaven help them if Florida,, Oklahoma, USC, OHio State, Florida State,, etc, were to fall to the lowly WVU, TCU, or Boise.

Mike Rapp
Mike Rapp

John, I, like you, am tired of the knee-jerk statements being made by many/most.

That said, because the SEC will not invite a school that is currently committed to its conference (they have to pull an aTm to receive an invite), I think it is almost impossible to see any ACC school join the SEC.

Those who push Virginia Tech either have short term memory or no knowledge of the facts that finally landed them in the ACC. VaTech languished in the Metro and then as an independent for decades, and then joined the Big East begrudgingly. It took the Virginia state legislature's 24/7 lobbying and financial guarantees to UVa to get Virginia to agree to cast the deciding vote to add Virginia Tech to the ACC. There is, for all practical purposes, no chance VaTech now renegs on the ACC to join the SEC. Much like Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, where UVa now goes, so goes VaTech.

Georgia Tech believes they are in the better conference. UNC will never leave Duke, Wake and NC State. Ditto for the other three. FSU has struggled to stay a top athletics brand in the ACC, and they know it would only get harder in the SEC. And with Miami on the verge of the death penalty, FSU finally sees a light at the end of their ACC tunnel to again be top dog in their state, if only in their conference.

About one fourth of MIssouri's current roster is Texas natives. That is the main thing that will worry Missouri's leadership about moving to another conference. I don't know why, but I think Mizzou will elect to stay in the Big 12 if Oklahoma gets their way with the new revenue sharing and 10/12-school expansion plans.

WVU may end up being the choice by process of elimination. But to me there is really only two logical options: Louisville and TCU. Kentucky will block Louisville so that leaves TCU sitting in the last chair.

Of course hard core aTm fans scoff at TCU, but my hope is that aTm doesn't become the SEC's version of Texas: Acting as if they have to own their entire state. What would the SEC be without Auburn AND Alabama? Yes, aTm has far more visibility than TCU even in DFW. But it benefits the entire conference to have a playing field in that market, and like it or not, TCU is now a national brand in both football and baseball. TCU also brings a second private school to the SEC, raising the school's academic standards as well.

Mizzou is the obvious choice. My hope, though, is that the Powers that Be will see the future and not go get the easy pick in WVU. The SEC just does not need another bottom tier academic institution in a state that ranks near the bottom in average household income, where football really is the only thing going. The SEC can and should do better, and they proved it by adding aTm. TCU would give the league the strongest footprint possible.

Bottom line, to me, is that any discussions that include ACC schools is wasted typing. It just ain't gonna happen.

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity

I would like to see C-USA schools included in the list, not because I would recommend any of them for the SEC, but just because I hear their names tossed about as Big East candidates and would be curious to see how they compare with each other (if ECU and UCF are really as far ahead of the others as some seem to think?). All factors you have cited (other than proximity to Birmingham) should be a good gauge of other conferences' interest in School X as well.
And for the record, I'm not a Big East fan but a Big Ten fan. Enjoy the site and the great info though.

Just Saying
Just Saying

While I realize the Naval Academy is not a viable option it would go a long way to help bolster the image of the conference as a football only conference. Academics are a no brainer, you get the DC-Baltimore-Philly markets plus a national market. They have anational fan base and its a great PR move. Keep this in mind if there is another NCAA investigation. As mentioned on this site, how many SEC states have naval bases? Big conference games can be played at Fedex Field or M&T Bank Stadium. Think the Naval Academy wouldn't want SEC $$, especially since our country is broke. Move Vandy to the West division and add Navy. With the corps at A&M, it would already make for a great crossover rival. Does anyone think for a moment that Navy could not hang with Vandy, A&M, Ole Miss, Kentucky? They hung with SC. I know its unlikely but its admittance does not come with a lot of strings.

vp81955
vp81955

I increasingly get the feeling the endgame will be this, in likely order of occurrence:

* SEC: Adds Texas A&M and Missouri (the latter could play football in the East if Alabama/Auburn wish not to be divided) -- 14 members.
* Big 12: Loses Texas A&M and Missouri; adds Brigham Young, Cincinnati, Louisville, South Florida, Texas Christian and West Virginia -- 14 members)
* Big Ten: Adds Maryland and Rutgers -- 14 members.
* ACC: Loses Maryland; adds Pittsburgh, Syracuse and Connecticut -- 14 members.
* Pac-12: As is -- 12 members.
* Notre Dame remains BCS independent.
* Big East: Ceases as a BCS member, returns to its roots as a basketball-oriented conference.

All 67 current BCS members retain their status, and TCU (scheduled to become BCS in the Big East next year) and BYU also join. (The 4 x 16 scenario so many predicted would have meant several current schools would have lost BCS status -- tricky politically -- and Texas' desire to preserve the Big 12, and its Longhorn Network, more or less made it moot.)

And that extra BCS berth vacated by the Big East becomes another at-large berth, as the Cotton Bowl joins the BCS rotation.

Each of the four altered conferences gets something it wants:

* The SEC gets a foothold in two large states, aiding plans for an eventual conference network;
* The Big Ten adds to its presence on the eastern seaboard with two good academic/athletic/research institutions to complement Penn State, and in fairly populous states that will add subscriptions to the Big Ten Network;
* The ACC replaces Maryland with another eastern school; and
* The Big 12 branches out, getting a presence in recruit-rich Florida with USF, acquiring the quasi-national BYU brand; and getting a foothold in the Ohio Valley with WVU, Cincinnati and Louisville and a natural home for TCU. (Iowa State, Kansas and Kansas State could comprise an East division with the four Eastern Time Zone emigres, with BYU, the two Oklahoma and four Texas schools in the West.)
* As a bonus, that clumsy hybrid called the Big East is finally out of the football business, meaning that if the BCS conferences ever decide to break away from the NCAA, the likes of Seton Hall, Marquette and Providence won't get in the way.

johnmrsec
johnmrsec

snuffysmif...

Please, no links. It's a policy we have to weed out advertisements and free plugs for folks' own websites. Rather than weeding some, we just weed all.

But thanks for reading,
John

Old Sarge
Old Sarge

I thought Ross Perot coined "vodoo economics"

Mike Taylor
Mike Taylor

WVU better take the B12 invite because that SEC call is not coming any time soon.

Bill Powe
Bill Powe

I believe a strong argument exists for NC State. Similar to Texas A and M, NC State should want to get out from underneath the shadow of UNC. Even though they are currently middle of the road in the ACC, and would have growing pains in the SEC, recruiting SEC caliber athletes would allow them to own UNC in football, and probably be upper tier in SEC basketball. NC State would bring the the NC television markets of Charlotte and Raleigh as we;; as the rest of the state which should make them as attractive as Missouri. All NC State has to do is ask politely to be considered.

Ga Tech Alum
Ga Tech Alum

I always enjoy reading your analyses, Mr. SEC. I look forward to your results. Once completed, then I think to be realistic, you should assess the likelihood those institutions would join the SEC. As you stated or implied, Notre Dame is a pipe dream. They are not going to join any conference in FB, in my opinion. But, if they did, the SEC would be waaaaay down the list behind the Big Ten and/or ACC. I appreciate your comments about my alma mater, Ga Tech. We have some folks who would be interested in joining the SEC, but I don't think it is enough to sway the key decision makers (our president, AD, faculty rep). Ga Tech will listen to the Big Ten if it comes calling, but otherwise is content with staying in the ACC. The core schools in NC & VA? Forget it. They are tied to one another tighter than a tick on a dog's...well, I'll keep it clean. They aren't leaving the ACC...or each other. Again, I appreciate your analyses and look forward to reading more in the future. Good stuff. Keep up the good work.

JaxGator
JaxGator

All great categories, but don't forget the X-factor (Timing and relationships). Texas's desire to move to the "pac-16" coupled with the Presidents (because this is being driven by the Presidents, not ADs/coaches) of Texas A&M and Florida sitting next to each other(L next to M), twice a year, at AAU meetings (and other SEC/Texas A&M relationships) helped push a new and final round of TAMU to SEC talks.

With Missouri? The SEC's needs for a 14th school, and Missouri's need to jump ship now, or be forced to give up all Tier 1 and 2 rights to the B12-3 for 6 years...

With Texas? Thats an easy one...As Larry Scott said....its about a "culture of equality". At this point, any conference would be concerned about adding Texas (see ACC and PAC-12).

Lets See the Numbers!

MIKEUM
MIKEUM

Good start. I think from a macro perspective that the big 4 conferences'overall goals are very siimilar now- homogenized if you will. With the SEC schools bolstering their academic qualifications, the old cliches, even just 5 years ago, are dying. You see the Big 10 exposed with amateur athlete problems that they used to say they don't have. The ACC growing along the entire eastern seaboard, becoming much more than just Tobacco Road and the research triangle. And the Pac spreading eastward (or contemplating it) to consume anything available before they reach Big 10/SEC country (why the Big 12 has a bullseye on it in addition to its unstable membership). The differences remaining are the intangibles - different cultural/societal aspects from being primarily located in each's particular section of the country. That regionality is why fans identify with schools, conferences as they do, because that is where they live, who they are. The missions of the schools and by extension, their conferences, are the same.

AllTideUp
AllTideUp

Dude, I don't know if you wrote that or not and no offense, but pretty much all of that was utterly ridiculous.

Mike Rapp
Mike Rapp

Filling seats as visitors matters little. All of the so-called big football stadiums are filled with season ticket holders and that school's fans.

Mike Rapp
Mike Rapp

If UConn and Rutgers join the ACC, the exit requirements for the Big East are moot. The conference would cease to exist. This is what happened when the Southwest Conference fell apart. Once the league failed to have a quorum, it ceased to have the legal ability to enforce its agreements.

WVU Fan
WVU Fan

You forget so soon, WVU kicked Oklahoma's ASS, then went on to kick Georgia's ASS, you guys dog WV, check out how many Rhode Scholars we have had, how many National Rifle Championships. It's people like you stereo typing us that really sucks.

Mike Rapp
Mike Rapp

Yeah, and that's why the SEC just added Texas A&M instead of Baylor and Rice.

AllTideUp
AllTideUp

Come on, if that were true then most of the moves made in the expansion process would not have been made.

johnmrsec
johnmrsec

Mike Rapp...

We said in the piece that not all of these schools will get consideration. We just picked the BCS leagues around the SEC plus five wild cards that are most discussed.

While you say I've wasted time by looking at the ACC, the previous poster says I should have included C-USA schools.

Hard to please everybody. Or, as I've found, anybody.

Thanks for reading the site,
John

Walter
Walter

I'm skeptical about TCU, but not because I feel we (A&M) need to own the entire state as you've suggested. It's more that I'm pretty familiar with TCU, where they were in the SWC, and how they've achieved their success. You've acknowledged that TCU doesn't own the DFW market (actually I would put them 4th in my estimation 1) Texas 2) Oklahoma 3) A&M 4) TCU) but even with their period of extended success they haven't been able to sell out their relatively small stadium (they average 42k in attendance last year). It's a school with an enrollment of 8k, so their alumni base is neither large no rapidly growing.

TCU deserves to be proud of what they've accomplished since the fall of the SWC, but the question is could they sustain it in a major conference, and I personally don't see any reason to believe they could. They have been able to win against fairly weak schedules which helped their recruiting. But in a conference where the wins will be harder to come by they are going to have a much more difficult time recruiting. If you bring in TCU it would look like a good move for a while, but long term they would likely sink and become simply a drain on the collective resources. Just my opinion.

yatesc
yatesc

If—and this is a BIG if, I admit—WVU were to accept an invitation by the Big XII, and the next day were to receive an invite from the SEC, I would bet anything they'd jump ship. The SEC is where WVU wants to be... I just don't think the SEC wants WVU unless Mizzou, FSU, VT, Clemson, and various others are unavailable or unwilling to join.

(WVU '04, FWIW.)

Ga Tech Alum
Ga Tech Alum

NC State already owns UNC in football. The North Carolina and Virginia schools are not going to leave one another...nor the ACC.

yatesc
yatesc

NC State is administered at the state level by UNC's board. I don't really see why they'd let NC State go and destabilize UNC's conference, do you?

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  12. Trackback says:

    Funny

    I was just wondering what computer software you would need to make business cards or labels from a home computer. Is is easy or even worth the time or money..

  13. Funny

    What is your opinion of personal blogs and online journaling?

  14. urlman cow says:

    Healing’s Dragon

    to search out concerns to enhance my site!I suppose its okay to help make usage of a handful of of the principles!!

  15. Maybe…

    I am a business man dealing in direct marketing. I need to start a blog for my business purposes. For this I hope I do not have to have an exclusive web site. Kindly advise about books where the fundamentals are explained..

  16. Trackback says:

    Great

    A computer program called Antivi took over my computer. How do I get rid of it?



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