Blog Entry

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

Posted on: September 7, 2011 2:44 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2011 2:51 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen

last-ditch legal effort to save the Big 12 is cute and all, but let's be realistic: Texas A&M to the SEC is something that A&M wants, the SEC wants, and even the Big 12 seems to want in an effort to put the Aggies behind them. Baylor, being Baylor, is not going to be able to hold back a tide that strong for very long. (For a visual representation of the effectiveness of the Bears' efforts, click here.*)

Which means, yes, A&M is going to become SEC school No. 13 and yes, before long the SEC is going to add school No. 14. No. 14 may not be able to join the Aggies in their new digs as soon as 2012 (it's possible -- arguably even likely at this late stage -- the SEC goes one season with an unbalanced divisional setup), but there's no way Mike Slive and Co. will stay at 13 one day longer than they have to.

So who's got next in the SEC expansion race? Breaking down the candidates in no particular order (and reminding you that a "gentleman's agreement" is in place that will prevent any expansion into states where the SEC already has a school):


Pros: Excellent academics is a major plus for SEC presidents. Ties to both St. Louis and Kansas City television markets. Could be a candidate for Big Ten expansion as well. Well-supported basketball program.

Cons: Despite recent successes, not a traditionally nationally-relevent football program. Zero competitive history with any current SEC member and not even much with A&M. Little to gain in SEC recruiting by expanding to Missouri. Debatable how much impact in those major markets Mizzou actually has. Trickier to add team to West than East; would either require ignoring geography or moving current West team (Auburn?**) to the East.


Rabidly supported, traditionally strong football program with plenty of success vs. SEC. Hoops program would give SEC a boost, too. Adding school for East division would bring geographic balance opposite A&M.

Cons: Not connected to any major market and expanding into West Virginia does nothing for SEC recruiting. Presidents sensitive to SEC's reputation may not want a university not considered a strong academic school.


Access to Raleigh TV market and fertile North Carolina recruiting grounds. More geographically accessible than other candidates. "Sleeper" football program enjoys high level of financial/fan support. Would join the East.

Cons: Despite that support, school has rarely fielded championship-level teams and won't move national needle. Academics aren't a minus, but may not be a Mizzou-style plus, either.


Most powerful, recognizable football program among potential/likely candidates; would hypthetically compete for East championships from moment of arrival. Sizable (if not national) following in Virginia and along Eastern seaboard. Could offer potential inroads in Virginia recruiting. Would join the East.

Cons: Swears up and down school is loyal to ACC. No real history with any SEC school.


Just hear out the scenario here: with the Sooners poised to force Texas's hand by jumping to the Pac-12 -- taking Oklahoma State with them and destroying the Big 12 in the process -- Mike Slive makes a preemptive strike against the potential Longhorn/Sooner Pac-16 by inviting the Sooners, Cowboys, and a third Big 12 castoff (Mizzou?) to form a 16-team SEC. Auburn and Alabama both move East and leaving the new SEC West looking like this: Ole Miss, Mississippi State, LSU, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Missouri. The blockbuster move secures the SEC a gigantic new TV rights deal, keeps the Sooners and Aggies out from under the Longhorns' thumb, and even approaches competitive divisional balance.

Cons: This is exceedingly unlikely.

But if Texas really is planning to join the Sooners in the Pac-12, that may be Slive's best option. With all due respect to the other four teams mentioned here, not one is a slam-dunk choice to justify its addition as a 14th team, much less a 15th or 16th if Larry Scott's new league redefines the college landscape. When all is said and done, the guess here is that either Missouri (or possibly N.C. State) gets the invite ... and then the SEC stops to catch its breath to figure out if 16 is a luxury or a necessity.

*Via's own Will Brinson.

**The Tigers are the easternmost West team and most of their traditional rivalries -- Georgia, Tennessee, Florida -- are in the East. The issue would be what to do with the Iron Bowl with Auburn and Alabama in separate divisions; would the league risk having the Tigers and Tide play each other on consecutive weeks?


Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: September 8, 2011 3:45 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

I've long been saying College Football will go to 4 major conferences and 4 mid-major conferences.  In this plan, The Big East will be raided and merge with the A-10 to makeup a basketball conference sans Temple.  ACC adds the New England tv market.  Big Ten adds the STL and KC tv markets while adding an instate rival for PSU as promised back in 1990 and gets the highly coveted Notre Dame.  SEC adds Louisville and stays pat at 14 and the Pac 16 gets much stronger with their 4 Big 12 additions.  

Of course, this may not end up being even close to 100% accurate as far as schools realignment, the format is realistic:  4 Majors and 4 Mid-Majors.


Big 16:  Illinois, Indiana, Ohio St, Penn St, Purdue, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan, Mich St, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Missouri, Kansas, and Pitt.

SEC:  Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, S. Carolina, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Miss, Miss St, A&M, Louisville.

Pac 16:  Cal, Oregon, Oregon St, Stanford, Washington, Wash St, Arizona, Ariz St, Colorado, UCLA, USC, Utah, Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma St.

ACC:  Boston College, Clemson, NC St, Wake Forest, Duke, Georgia Tech, N. Carolina, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, UConn, Syracuse, Florida St, Miami, Maryland, and Rutgers. 


Big 12:  Kansas St, Iowa St, Baylor, Houston, Rice, TCU, Air Force, Wyoming, Colo St, Memphis, Tulane, BYU, and S. Miss.

MAC:  Akron, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Kent St, Miami OH, Ohio, Ball St, C. Mich, E. Mich, W. Mich, Toledo, N. Illinois, Marshall, Cincy, and Temple.

Sun Belt:  Ark St, Florida Atl, Florida Intl, La-Lafayette, La-Monroe, Middle Tenn, N. Texas, Troy, Tulsa, S. Methodist, UAB, UCF, E. Carolina, South Florida, and W. Kentucky.

WAC:  Boise St, New Mexico, New Mexico St, San Diego St, San Jose St, UNLV, Fresno St, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Utah St, and UTEP.

Since: Sep 8, 2011
Posted on: September 8, 2011 3:14 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

The SEC would likely add WVU, I think. As I posted in another board, this is what I think.

Big 12:
Loses - Texas A&M
Gains - BYU, Pitt, UL
Gains - Texas A&M
Gains - WVU (I say this because the ACC Teams can not leave until the 2013 season and they are pretty commited to the ACC)

Stays at 12 with no intention of expanding

Stays at 12 with no intention of expanding unless Notre Dame decides join

Big East
Loses - WVU, Pitt, UL
Gains - ECU, UCF, UH, Villinova, Memphis  (Big East Brings up Villinova takes the rest from CUSA to become 12)
Gains - TCU in 2012 anyway

Stays at 12 with no intention of expanding (Money is to good right now, They don't want to share)

Loses - TCU (gone in 2012 anyway)
Gains - UTEP, SMU
Gains - UN, UH and Fresno state anyway

Loses - UTEP, SMU, ECU, UCF, UH, Memphis
Gains - FAU, FIU, ULM, LA Tech, North Texas, Ark State, Troy, Middle Ten, WKU and APP State from FCS.(CUSA only 16 team conference)

Loses -  La Tech (UN, UH and Fresno state anyway)
Gains - Additional FCS Universities


There are many diffrent ideas floating around but this is the one that i think works the best. There are alot of things I would like to see diffrent like geographical location of the university to the conference but we all know that money and tv rule college football.

Since: Jun 11, 2010
Posted on: September 8, 2011 10:28 am

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

The SEC does not want Texas. Hello! That's why they got A&M. Yes, Texas, the SEC wants A&M over you. But, let's be honest, Texas never had an interest in the SEC. I really think it comes down to three schools: Va Tech, West Virginia and Missouri. And frankly, I would eliminate Missouri because they have no football tradition. I would then say it is between Va Tech and West Virginia. --And Va Tech gets the offer if they want it. --And I think they take it.

But there is something that many people are missing: the Big 10 and the SEC have no interest OR NEED to expand to 16 teams. Why? Because they are sound at 12/14. The SEC will stop at 14 (to balance A&M). And the Big 10 will stop at 12. The only way the Big 10 expands is if Notre Dame wants in; then they would expand to 14. But that will not happen. So, my prediction is that the SEC will be 14, the Big 10 will be 12 and the MWC will be 16 becasue they are despeprate to get AQ status. The Pac-12 would make a mistake to just add OK and OK ST. I say they should not do it unless they get Texas and Texas Tech.

Also, contrary to current thought, I think the Big 12 can stay together if OK stays and they add BYU. Those 10 schools can make it. And for  good insurance, if they added two more to go to 12, I think they would make it. The other two schools to add would be TCU and Boise St. Why not? That would make them a legitimate conference. Has anyone else thought of this?

But, I am convinced that the Big 10 and the SEC do not go beyond their respective 12 and 14 members. There may be some new superconferences--but not these two.

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: September 7, 2011 7:25 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

If I was the SEC, I would try to jump on Texas, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma St before the Pac 14 does.  Texas would have to drop it's network but they're going to have to in order to join any of the up-and-coming super conferences, whether it's the Pac 14 or SEC.  If the Pac 14 gets those three schools, they could beat out the SEC for top-ranked football conference.  USC, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, Cal, Washington all have rich football traditions then add in Texas and Oklahoma.  Oklahoma St is no slouch either each season and Colorado looks to be on the comeback trail to relevance as well. 

The rest of the Big 12 can either stay intact and add on other teams like Air Force, Houston, TCU, Rice, Wyoming, etc or they will fold altogether. 

The ACC will raid the Big East but the Big East and Big 12 will in turn raid Conf USA in order to stay intact.

The Big Ten will eventually add Missouri and Notre Dame, plus Pitt and Maryland imo, making them bigger and better in both football and basketball while also extending the Big Ten Network into the STL, KC, and DC/Baltimore tv networks.    

It's soon to be survival of the fittest in the NCAA realignment phase and imo there will end up being 4 major conferences and 4 mid-major conferences in Division- 1.


Since: Aug 27, 2006
Posted on: September 7, 2011 6:07 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

I do think there is one BIG SCHOOL missed here.......TEXAS! At this point, I think they WOULD join the SEC. They are saying no.....but better opponents help that Longhorn Network, and since ESPN owns both the SEC Network and Longhorn Network......makes sense to me. A&M and Texas keep their rivalry. The PAC 16 still gets OU, OSU, and Texas Tech, and can add someone like BYU or Hawaii. (Don't laugh about Hawaii.....TV friendly game there for a West Coast 9PM game and is great recruiting tool. "Hey, and wait until you see Hawaii when we play there.....)

Since: Sep 7, 2011
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:53 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

"Not connected to any major market and expanding into West Virginia does nothing for SEC recruiting."

Umm...Morgantown, West Virginia where WVU is located is part of the Pittsburgh TV market, and WVU already does a LOT of recruiting in fertile Western PA. Plus, Pittsburghers like myself do like our football, and through WVU the SEC would have the Big East (Pitt) and the Big Ten (Penn State & Ohio State) to compete with for recruits. Hey, Pitt was willing to end the Backyard Brawl by flirting with the Big Ten JUST to rekindle the Penn State rivalry.

I think you need to do some research before you assume that certain schools don't have access to major media markets, especially in football hotbeds. Yes, we like our Steelers at the end of the day, but college and high school football is big here, too.

Since: Sep 24, 2006
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:47 pm

This story doesn't you, beaker.

Since: Aug 11, 2006
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:29 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?


Are you really trying to say that there would not be a huge gap between the SEC and the PAC-16 in your scenario? Obviously you do not know what you are talking about considering LSU just beat Oregon by 13 points without their starting QB right after a different SEC team beat Oregon in the National Championship Game. Also you suggested that the PAC add Utah/BYU/Boise State which is a great idea except for the fact that Utah is already in the PAC-12. If Oklahoma and Texas were both in the SEC they would have to negotiate an automatic bid into the Nat'l Championship or a 4-team playoff because the best team in the nation would be in the SEC 90% of the time but would often have 1 or 2 losses simply due to incredible strength of schedule.

I think your little jab was at SEC playing weak non-conference schedules and you are correct that a lot of SEC teams don't play big early season non-conference games but this is partly because of the multiple ACC-SEC end of year rivalry games (SC-Clem, GA-GT, UF-FSU) and partly because the conference schedule is hard enough where SEC teams don't need to play tough non-conference opponents to prove themselves even though LSU and UGA both played top 10 teams last week and Alabama is playing a Penn State team that is usually good this week- game is scheduled years in advance no way for BAMA to know PSU would suck this year.

Since: Oct 18, 2009
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:22 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

How did you get superstar status when its obvious your writing skills are around the second grade?

Since: Oct 18, 2009
Posted on: September 7, 2011 5:18 pm

SEC expansion: Who's No. 14?

I truly don't think OU would go to the SEC, for a variety of reasons but primarily because Coach Stoops wants to go to the PAC12.  And keping Bob Stoops happy and at Ou is a big priority for The AD and the President.  I would not mind them going to the SEC but it's not going to happen.

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