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Conference Re-Alignments

DuckTownHusker

Blackshirt Sith Lord
5 Year Member
Your last sentence is very true. The only thing keeping the Big 12 afloat is that Okie keeps finding a way to be relevant in the NC picture. If that stops...
15 years ago, Texas and Oklahoma had a stranglehold on the Big XII South. But then A&M jumped ship and it all started falling apart for UT. Suddenly, the Aggies got good - Heisman good. So did Baylor. And TCU started showing up on the national stage. Now, I'd argue that A&M is consistently the top team in the state, while the Big 12 Texases play musical chairs trying to out-do each other.

If not for Oklahoma continuing to stay elite (Lincoln Riley is looking like a GREAT hire, btw) after Stoops' departure, the Big XII would have already gone the way of the Big East and become a basketball conference. Aside from a few flash in the pan years, ISU, KU, KSU and OSU are really non-factors in the football landscape.
 
Aside from a few flash in the pan years, ISU, KU, KSU and OSU are really non-factors in the football landscape.
These things don't change overnight, but I get the sense that the football fortunes of the Big 12 cellar-dwellers really are improving. Oklahoma State has been as competitive and nationally prominent under Gundy as they ever had been before, and I think that they're going to have another year where they should be a Top 20 sort of team, if they stay healthy. If Iowa State can put together one more good year--just go to a bowl game--it will be the best 3-year run that they've had in the past half-century. Kansas's fortunes couldn't go much lower, but they did get Miles, and they are planning to invest some money in facilities, and they're already recruiting better, so they should have better days ahead, and relatively soon. K State is probably the one team that's most up in the air, right now. Nobody besides Snyder has ever been able to win there, but his age and pending retirement had been hanging over the program for a decade. I think that the guy they got is a pretty good fit, but I don't know if the KSU fans will be very patient if he has a losing season or two, right away. If they're not back in a bowl game by year 3, it could be swampy mediocrity for the foreseeable future.

I'd argue that all of those teams mentioned would be better off, as a whole, for the Big 12 to continue more or less as it is, indefinitely. You can add in Texas Tech, Baylor, and TCU as well. Unless they can find a way to get into the B1G or the SEC, what future arrangement would be brighter for them? Even if one or two manage that, what about the rest? Someone is going to be left out in the cold when the Big 12 collapses, and it will NOT be Oklahoma or Texas.
 
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HuskerNash

Recruit
2 Year Member
These things don't change overnight, but I get the sense that the football fortunes of the Big 12 cellar-dwellers really are improving. Oklahoma State has been as competitive and nationally prominent under Gundy as they ever had been before, and I think that they're going to have another year where they should be a Top 20 sort of team, if they stay healthy. If Iowa State can put together one more good year--just go to a bowl game--it will be the best 3-year run that they've had in the past half-century. Kansas's fortunes couldn't go much lower, but they did get Miles, and they are planning to invest some money in facilities, and they're already recruiting better, so they should have better days ahead, and relatively soon. K State is probably the one team that's most up in the air, right now. Nobody besides Snyder has ever been able to win there, but his age and pending retirement had been hanging over the program for a decade. I think that the guy they got is a pretty good fit, but I don't know if the KSU fans will be very patient if he has a losing season or two, right away. If they're not back in a bowl game by year 3, it could be swampy mediocrity for the foreseeable future.

I'd argue that all of those teams mentioned would be better off, as a whole, for the Big 12 to continue more or less as it is, indefinitely. You can add in Texas Tech, Baylor, and TCU as well. Unless they can find a way to get into the B1G or the SEC, what future arrangement would be brighter for them? Even if one or two manage that, what about the rest? Someone is going to be left out in the cold when the Big 12 collapses, and it will NOT be Oklahoma or Texas.
Great post. In my opinion it is better to have more and stronger conferences with teams regionally located rather than 3 or 4 super conferences stacked with 20+ teams. If it wasn't for all the traditional conference matchups I would start over and build 8 12 team conferences each with two division and try to get them all within close proximity-every conference gets changed up to some degree based geography. You would need to find 96 quality (8x12) teams to be in one of the 8 major conferences so some of the UCF's, Houston's, Boise,and Memphis of the world move into a Power 8 conference. The 16 division winners are in the playoffs with the first round playing the opposite division for your conference championship. The 8 conference champions are now in a seeded playoff system. No at large teams-if you can't win your division you can't be in the playoffs. With that being said can SOMEONE play defense in the Big 12. I love offensive football but holy cow, its just getting worse.
 
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Great post. In my opinion it is better to have more and stronger conferences with teams regionally located rather than 3 or 4 super conferences stacked with 20+ teams. If it wasn't for all the traditional conference matchups I would start over and build 8 12 or team conferences each with two division and try to get them all within close proximity-every conference gets changed up to some degree based geography. You would need to find 96 quality (8x12) teams to be in one of the 8 major conferences so some of the UCF's, Houston's, Boise,and Memphis of the world move into a Power 8 conference. The 16 division winners are in the playoffs with the first round playing the opposite division for your conference championship. The 8 conference champions are now in a seeded playoff system. No at large teams-if you can't win your division you can't be in the playoffs. With that being said can SOMEONE play defense in the Big 12. I love offensive football but holy cow, its just getting worse.
There isn't any central authoritative body that is (or ever will be) in a position to make that sort of wholesale coerced change. It's fun from a hypothetical perspective, but the truth is that certain schools and certain conferences have too much power to ever be forced to do something that they don't want to do. I'd say that it's more likely that a conference like the SEC will eventually just embrace their past habits of cheating and just decide to go all in as a semi-pro developmental league with modestly paid players, who may or may not have any intention of taking classes. There's already a built-in market for that sort of basketball player, and I suspect that there are enough high school football players who don't fully value a college education who would be more than willing to get paid right out of high school, even though everyone else would know that their future is being sold.
 
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HuskerNash

Recruit
2 Year Member
There isn't any central authoritative body that is (or ever will be) in a position to make that sort of wholesale coerced change. It's fun from a hypothetical perspective, but the truth is that certain schools and certain conferences have too much power to ever be forced to do something that they don't want to do. I'd say that it's more likely that a conference like the SEC will eventually just embrace their past habits of cheating and just decide to go all in as a semi-pro developmental league with modestly paid players, who may or may not have any intention of taking classes. There's already a built-in market for that sort of basketball player, and I suspect that there are enough high school football players who don't fully value a college education who would be more than willing to get paid right out of high school, even though everyone else would know that their future is being sold.
It's all a pipe dream on my part-nothing I see happening. I love college football but more variety in matchups would also be fun. We basically play the same teams every year and then with conference tie in for bowl games you can run into the some of the same thing. I shudder at the thought as of today but how much fun could a competitive Alabama/Nebraska game be. It's been what, 40 years since that last happened?
 

DuckTownHusker

Blackshirt Sith Lord
5 Year Member
It's all a pipe dream on my part-nothing I see happening. I love college football but more variety in matchups would also be fun. We basically play the same teams every year and then with conference tie in for bowl games you can run into the some of the same thing. I shudder at the thought as of today but how much fun could a competitive Alabama/Nebraska game be. It's been what, 40 years since that last happened?
It was 40 years last fall: September 2, 1978.
If only there was some website where you could look up all the Nebraska games to find this stuff out.
 
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DuckTownHusker

Blackshirt Sith Lord
5 Year Member
Look at the Non-Conference schedule we had in 1980-Utah, Iowa, Penn State and Florida State-all 4 games to start the season!! By the looks of the scores, Iowa and Utah didn't have much but damn at least on paper, what a schedule.
Compare that to any SEC school, as they always schedule 4 games against powerhouses like Old Dominion and Florida A&M.
 

HuskerNash

Recruit
2 Year Member
You don’t know how bad it sucks living in the middle of the SEC country. Love this part of the country in many ways but the conference arrogance is nauseating. They were even convinced they had the best basketball conference this year.
 
Look at the Non-Conference schedule we had in 1980-Utah, Iowa, Penn State and Florida State-all 4 games to start the season!! By the looks of the scores, Iowa and Utah didn't have much but damn at least on paper, what a schedule.
Keep in mind that it was/is common to schedule games a decade ahead of time, and in 1970, Utah, Iowa, and Florida State were all less than impressive. Penn State had been good pretty much from the time Paterno showed up there, so that would have been the heavyweight non-conference game, but the other three would have been roughly the equivalent of us now scheduling New Mexico State, North Carolina, Florida Atlantic, and one heavy hitter.
 

Hville

Junior Varsity
2 Year Member
You can say as many times as you want that Texas and Notre Dame are the B1G's favorites and that they would take Texas over Nebraska back when they choose Nebraska but its pure hypothetics. No matter how many times you say you are interested in those two they won't play within the scope of fairness and that is why Delaney has been unsuccessful with both. The primary reason Notre Dame and Texas are in their situations is nobody wants them under unfair terms.....except maybe the Big 12 and that is why they are constantly on the hit list for dis-banding.

And yes.....outside of Texas people everyone hates Texas.
 

Farmer Jake

Recruit
I understand conference commissioners have to make books balance, and they work towards having a larger piece of the college financial pie to keep on top. The commissioners see $, understand $, and make $ their top priority. But they need to also understand not to add a cancer (or drink a poison) to try to add a few bucks to the coffers.

Texas has ruined one conference, almost ruined another conference, and will most likely make a power grab (because they know best) for whatever conference they would move to. There may be enough lower level teams in the BIG that are tired of the OSU-Michigan dominance of the BIG that could look as Texas as a power that would knock Michigan-OSU down a peg or two. For those who don't believe that could happen should remember the early days of the Big XII. Texas picked up a lot of allies that made conference voting an 11 to 1 outcome. Until Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri, and Texas A&M had had enough and went to greener pastures. (I don't know about Colorado's attitude towards Texas, but the other 3 can point to the havoc that Texas had created to go elsewhere.)

Yes, the money may be nice, but would the possibility of an unstable conference be worth it?
 

MadRat

God, Family, Football
2 Year Member
We call that tyranny. The people rejected tyranny.

Student-athletes are getting short changed under the money grubbers. The increase of money in the game is going to lead to more lawsuits from players. It's hard work to participate these days. The NCAA needs to increase the number of divisions and sub-divisions to open up player recognition. They also need to make the seasons more spread out with mandatory down time so student-athletes can also be students. They also need to expand female sports opportunities to fend of Title IX lawsuits. Creating one big money monster is going to bite everyone in the butt if they don't take an effort to give back to all student-athletes.
 

Huskerthom

All Legend
5 Year Member
I understand conference commissioners have to make books balance, and they work towards having a larger piece of the college financial pie to keep on top. The commissioners see $, understand $, and make $ their top priority. But they need to also understand not to add a cancer (or drink a poison) to try to add a few bucks to the coffers.

Texas has ruined one conference, almost ruined another conference, and will most likely make a power grab (because they know best) for whatever conference they would move to. There may be enough lower level teams in the BIG that are tired of the OSU-Michigan dominance of the BIG that could look as Texas as a power that would knock Michigan-OSU down a peg or two. For those who don't believe that could happen should remember the early days of the Big XII. Texas picked up a lot of allies that made conference voting an 11 to 1 outcome. Until Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri, and Texas A&M had had enough and went to greener pastures. (I don't know about Colorado's attitude towards Texas, but the other 3 can point to the havoc that Texas had created to go elsewhere.)

Yes, the money may be nice, but would the possibility of an unstable conference be worth it?
One key difference. To join the B1G it has to be a unanimous vote. Pretty sure we would not be the only ones to vote against it.
 
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