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SEC A.D.s Ready To Start Schedule Talks

Just a quick note from Nashville where I’ve ventured on some MrSEC.com business…

The SEC’s athletic directors are descending on the Music City as planned for their talks regarding the SEC’s future scheduling formats.  Jeremy Foley (Florida), Greg McGarity (Georgia), Pete Boone (Ole Miss) and David Williams (Vanderbilt) were in and around the lobby as I checked into the Hilton downtown this afternoon.

Perhaps I should slide a copy of this under a few doors.

The ADs will meet in Nashville during this week’s women’s basketball tournament and then reconvene next week in New Orleans to continue talks during the men’s tourney.  Whatever the ADs come up with over the next two weeks will likely have to pass muster with the presidents and commissioner Mike Slive in Destin at the SEC Meetings in late-May, early-June.

 


12 comments
Lupin
Lupin

Has anybody asked them?

 

It could well be that they'd jump at the chance to have a shot at getting out of the cellar of their division.  Not to dis them but in the West there are four teams that regularly beat them (even with Nutt at Arkansas the Razorbacks won more often than not), in the East they would have to get by Florida and Georgia.  Let's face it, Tennessee is a train wreck that may take twenty years to recover and even then is unlikely to regain the form of the late 90's-early 2000's.

 

Having a better shot at Florida and Georgia players to go along with their current home recruiting base would be a benefit too.

Lupin
Lupin

Why is everyone making this so freaking hard?

 

Move Mississippi State to the East and Missouri to the West.  They're both about the same caliber team year in and year out so the balance remains unaffected.

 

Have MSU play Ole MIss every year which would free up Kentucky and Vanderbilt and then let MU and A&M flip a coin to gets to pick between those two since they're the new guys.

 

Problem solved.

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

Lupin...

 

So MSU would give up its rivalries with Alabama, LSU and Auburn?  Three of the oldest in the SEC?

 

Sorry, this isn't the Big 12 where one school takes it in the shorts at the expense of everyone else.

 

Thanks for reading,John 

10Vol85
10Vol85

I know you’re a strong proponent of the 6-1-2 scheduling format.  It and every other format that’s been discussed here and (that I’ve seen) elsewhere are based on two premises with which I disagree:

            1.  Rotation of non-permanent opponents must be uniform; everyone must roll through their non-permanent opponents in a regular, periodic manner.

            2.  Every team must play the same number of conference games (8 or 9).

 

Assumption #1 is based on the idea that each team needs to see each team from the other division periodically.  While preferable, (mainly so traveling fans can occasionally visit the other venues around the league), I don't believe this a necessity.  It certainly wasn't before 1992.

 

Assumption #2 is based primarily on the fact that conference record is used to determine division representatives in the championship and secondarily (I suspect) on the manner in which TV games are contracted and scheduled

 

The only real requirement, if you want a championship game, is the NCAA stipulation that each division complete a round robin.

10Vol85
10Vol85

One final point regarding the 6-0-2 scheduling format.  It wouldn’t necessarily mean the end of the long played rivalries.  Like Texas v. Texas A&M and Missouri v. Kansas, the teams could still play; it just wouldn’t count in the standings.  Of course, Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, and Tennessee wouldn’t want to be forced to do that due to scheduling impacts and would likely oppose the 6-0-2.  It is possible for the rivalries to survive the 6-0-2, though.  $$ incentives make many things possible.

10Vol85
10Vol85

Options 2, (best) 6+x format:  Division records count toward the division representative in the championship game.  Interdivisional games only come into play when other tiebreakers are exhausted.  This alleviates the requirement that each team play the same number of conference games each year.  The 6 division games could be scheduled in the standard rotating manner with 3 home, 3 away each year for each team.  This would satisfy the NCAA round-robin requirement and is fairer than using the conference record anyway.  Remove the standard interdivisional rotation and let teams free-form their interdivisional schedules similar to the way teams free-formed their conference schedules prior to 1992.  The 6 divisional games are required - nothing more.  This option would allow teams to meet as often or seldom as they prefer.  (Arkansas / S. Carolina, Miss. St. / Kentucky are you listening)?  Drawbacks against this option would be

                        A. TV scheduling and guarantees.

                        B.  Some teams could have a harder time lining up interdivisional opponents.

The conference could structure financial incentives to offset each of these issues.  The chief benefit of this format is that teams have more control of who they play and can customize according to their own needs.  To me, this is huge.  Broken rivalries could be restored.  Existing rivalries can be maintained.  New rivalries may emerge.  Also, teams could choose to schedule in a way to allow more flexibility in non-conference scheduling.  For instance, Florida could replace an interdivisional game with a marquee out of conference opponent and maintain their Florida St. and money games if desired.

 

Some would say "why be in the same conference with a team if you don't play regularly"?  This wasn't an issue before 1992   Being in a conference gives you a means to a championship and it gives you a means to help fill your schedule but there's no reason for the scheduling to be overly structured.

 

Some would say "why play a conference game if it doesn't count in the standings"?  Why not?  The better question is why continue the unfair practice of giving teams with more fortunate interdivisional scheduling an unnecessary advantage in the division standings?

10Vol85
10Vol85

I would propose that, if desired, a schedule could be constructed in one of the following manners:

 

            Option 1, hybrid 6-1-1/6-0-2 format:  I believe it is mathematically possible to have a hybrid type rotation where some schools such as Tennessee, Alabama, Auburn, and Georgia could go on a slower interdivisional rotation (through a method of scheduling using substitution of opponents).  For example, the following is based off of the 6-2 scheduling format: In a year when Tennessee is due to play at Alabama, UA's would-be visiting East opponent under the 6-0-2 system would play at Tennessee's would-be hosting West opponent instead.

deltaboy
deltaboy

John, you should slide as many copies of your "Push It Past Cowards" post under as many ADs' doors as you can find.  That's the best post you have ever put on here!

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

deltaboy...

 

Thanks... I only wish I'd had time to correct several typos before posting it, but that's what you get when you try to post as much in a day as we do.

 

John

SEC Writer
SEC Writer

Hey John, I know SEC football games will sell anywhere, anytime on TV, But how much do you think TV will play in the basketball side of scheduling? I know that ESPN has some say in who the opponents are who face twice a season in basketball with the BIG EAST. Thats why we see a lot of Syracuse vs UCONN and Georgetown vs Villanova and so forth. Do you think ESPN will have any say in the double games of the SEC in basketball next season? I'm sure getting Kentucky vs Florida (twice) or another highly projected SEC team will be more exciting to them than say Kentucky vs a lowly ranked S. Carolina or Ole Miss (twice). I'm just wondering where TV influence is going to come into play in future SEC basketball scheduling.

John at MrSEC
John at MrSEC moderator

SEC Writer...

 

Due to complaints they're sure to get at the SEC Meetings this spring, I'm sure the league will try do a better job of spreading around the Thursday-Saturday turnarounds.  But as long as ESPN is paying $155 million per year to the league -- and that number's about to go up with A&M and Missouri entering the league -- television will continue to have a BIG say in scheduling or football and basketball.

 

Thanks for reading,John 



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