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New UT A.D. Says SEC Will Expand Again

New-to-the-job Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart said the obvious today, but that’s still more than SEC commissioner Mike Slive might have preferred.  According to the AP, Hart said the SEC will expand again – no kidding — and that officials at each school need to have a number of frank discussions before moving forward.

Where he said that and who he said it isn’t covered in the three-paragraph blurb.

According to the writer, Hart said the acquisition of Texas A&M was a good one, “but the league’s leaders must take their next steps deliberately because the SEC will expand again.”  Those are the author’s words, not Hart’s.  He also said those talks will take place “in short order.”  (His words, not the authors.)

While everyone knows the league won’t sit at 13 for long, Slive and others associated with the SEC have been singing a “we’re happy at 13″ tune for the past week.  Hart has taken things a step further.

And the press being the press, his comments will make headlines across the country as though they’re shocking to the ear.  Hey, sadly, it’s what we do.

Hart came to Tennessee from Alabama earlier this month where he had been the CEO of Bama’s program.  He formerly served as the athletic director at Florida State.

 


11 comments
Casey
Casey

Chris, it expanded in 1991 so it could have a championship game.

Chris
Chris

Why did the sec expand to twelve in 1991? Sure, part of was to increase the size, but sc and arkansas were not teeming with tv markets. Clearly, in the addition of every team to the sec, its been a matter of desire on the part of the conference, but mostly its been a team floating adrift. Of course, this has not only been acting the part of the good samaritan, as these additions have all been only mid-level powers that don't often challenge the sec establishment.
Bottom line, I think it would be out of character to raid another conference, but out of the question to add a higher calliber athletic school. I think these factors are just as important in mizzou's selection over wv as tv markets.

John
John

Hart definitely states the obvious here, and I think it will be Mizzou. I understand the reasons for it, but I'd still rather have someone else. Mizzou has only 7 Big12 titles in all sports since that league was created. That's tied with K-State for the fewest. Their men's basketball program, which is the marquee program there, has ONE Big12 tourney title and THAT'S IT! Mizzou would not add anything to the SEC athletically, in fact I can't think of a single sport in which they'd be competitive.

atl14dat
atl14dat

Kudos to Hart.

Everybody knows that # 14 is coming,despite Slive's Public Statements.

There is absolutely zero chance that the SEC plays one second with a 13 team league.

Slive has been a brilliant leader but this" too cute by half." ploy on the 14th team is getting old.

Wish he would just state , yes we are looking for the 14th team. It will be done on our time and terms. No further comment necessary.

Eff the Ken Starr types.

HoustonVol
HoustonVol

and have more money. and the primary reason to add Arkansas was to expand the basketball product and add a conference rival to Kentucky. The Ark ends up basically nuking the BB program. However with their BB fan base, it will be back eventually. SC was added primarily for recruiting and expanding the footprint. They did not add SC because of football ability since SC has been historically one of the most under performing programs in the south. There are the big 6 schools in the SEC football wise. The Big 6 already fight like crazy over championships. There is not a rush to add a program that will take away championships from the big 6. None of the programs that have been added or are mentioned to be added are another Bama or UF. A&M is a great program and has all of the resources to be a top level SEC program, but historically the success is not there like OU, FSU, etc.

AllTideUp
AllTideUp

They'd definitely be competitive in basketball. There aren't too many SEC teams that have won SEC tournament titles other than UK in the last 20 years. The Big 12 has had some good bball programs even if you don't count Kansas. So I actually think Mizzou would be in the upper tier of basketball schools if for no more reason than most SEC schools haven't made a commitment to bball like Mizzou has. And other than football and basketball, is anyone really worried about anything else? We're all casual fans of our schools when they are good in an obscure sport, but we're not really keeping up with it as a whole.

AllTideUp
AllTideUp

They may still play a season with 13. I don't think that's out of the question, but I think Hart is just saying that 13 is not a long term option.

bob rogers
bob rogers

never mind...i remember...Arrrg :)

John
John

They might be middle of the pack in basketball. Mike Anderson just left there and is now at Arkansas, so you'd figure there would be a drop off. UK is a juggernaut right now, and Florida, Vandy, and Bama should all be better than Mizzou for next the couple of years.

AllTideUp
AllTideUp

I thought about Mike Anderson leaving for Arkansas earlier, but you also have to remember that Anderson had a lot of connections to Arkansas. He had been an assistant coach there for many years under Nolan Richardson whereas he had only been at Mizzou for about 3 or 4 years. If you remember though he did build some pretty good teams up there while he was at Mizzou.

There is also the consideration that Arkansas probably had a lot more money to devote to paying big time coaches than Mizzou had if for no other reason than because of the money the SEC provides. I'm not saying Mizzou would come in and be dominant in SEC bball, but they will have more resources to devote to it in the SEC. They definitely wouldn't be a drag on the SEC competitively.



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