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Old 06-28-2022, 05:19 PM   #2651
RainMaker
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My guess is it would be a little bigger than 30-40 teams. Maybe the P5 minus the Big 12 but with a few extra schools thrown in (Notre Dame, BYU, Baylor). Maybe trim some fat in other areas (would schools like Northwestern and Vanderbilt even want to play at this level?).

There wouldn't be promotion/relegation from on the field per say, but I do think there would be teams moving up and down. Similar to conference realignment. If there is a school that can bring something to the table in a TV deal or whatever, they'll bring them up. And if there is a school that's just dead weight, I don't see why they wouldn't drop them when the contractually can.
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Old 06-28-2022, 05:21 PM   #2652
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Although maybe the plan is to just take the SEC and sprinkle in some big schools from across the country (Ohio State, Notre Dam, USC, etc) and call it a league.
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Old 06-28-2022, 08:16 PM   #2653
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The ACC can get fucked
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Old 06-28-2022, 08:48 PM   #2654
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Although maybe the plan is to just take the SEC and sprinkle in some big schools from across the country (Ohio State, Notre Dam, USC, etc) and call it a league.

That's more likely. Maybe the rest of the P5 can cobble together something like "The Championship" as level 2
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Old 06-28-2022, 08:54 PM   #2655
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Nope, not gonna happen. The B1G rules the roost in terms of what can be done and this wont.
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Old 06-28-2022, 09:04 PM   #2656
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Nope, not gonna happen. The B1G rules the roost in terms of what can be done and this wont.

Bwahahaha

They've got a handful that would be considered for the 30 size. The rest can have fun in the 2nd tier.

Which is better than the ACC could manage, but still.
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Old 06-28-2022, 09:09 PM   #2657
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There were rumors a couple years ago about Ohio State and Michigan joining the SEC. If things break down and the money is right, they absolutely would bolt.
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Old 06-28-2022, 10:22 PM   #2658
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How's college football survive when you pare it down and make it a 20 team league with half the teams in the southeast? Isn't that suddenly a very regional sport with a lot less national draw?

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Old 06-29-2022, 12:20 AM   #2659
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How's college football survive when you pare it down and make it a 20 team league with half the teams in the southeast? Isn't that suddenly a very regional sport with a lot less national draw?

It's largely a regional sport NOW if you're honest about it.
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Old 06-29-2022, 12:48 AM   #2660
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The reason the SEC dominates on the field is geography. The top 200-300 recruits in the country are far more likely to come from Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana than their respective populations would indicate. Texas is no slouch, either.

The SEC has quite a few good population centers and the best overall talent this side of Vanderbilt, but on its own, without a playoff system, it's just a regional semi-pro league that's miles away from the NFL in terms of talent.

What the SEC doesn't have is a lot of AAU-level international universities. Texas will give them five. The Big Ten has 13 and the Pac Twelve has nine. The AAU schools have more national reach and much greater endowments.

The Big Ten has only three universities with endowments below $2 billion (the three newest additions). The SEC will have three above $2 billion (Vandy, Texas and Texas A&M) and ten of the 16 schools are below the lowest Big Ten figure of $1.5 billion.

It will be tough for the SEC to generate interest outside of its footprint without thorough representation from the other three major conferences (the Big 12 and AAC will be at least another level down after realignment).

When the Big Ten, Pac Twelve and ACC met last year, who knows what was discussed. Likely, though, what to do if the SEC thinks they'll play along if it gets the idea that this access to young talent means everything.

One question is whether a super-league can exist without a CBA and some form of a draft. This interim stage doesn't seem very stable - throwing seven-figure guarantees at teenagers sounds more '80s USFL than sound policy.
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Old 06-29-2022, 12:56 AM   #2661
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The reason the SEC dominates on the field is geography. The top 200-300 recruits in the country are far more likely to come from Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana than their respective populations would indicate. Texas is no slouch, either.

The SEC has quite a few good population centers and the best overall talent this side of Vanderbilt, but on its own, without a playoff system, it's just a regional semi-pro league that's miles away from the NFL in terms of talent.

What the SEC doesn't have is a lot of AAU-level international universities. Texas will give them five. The Big Ten has 13 and the Pac Twelve has nine. The AAU schools have more national reach and much greater endowments.

The Big Ten has only three universities with endowments below $2 billion (the three newest additions). The SEC will have three above $2 billion (Vandy, Texas and Texas A&M) and ten of the 16 schools are below the lowest Big Ten figure of $1.5 billion.

It will be tough for the SEC to generate interest outside of its footprint without thorough representation from the other three major conferences (the Big 12 and AAC will be at least another level down after realignment).

When the Big Ten, Pac Twelve and ACC met last year, who knows what was discussed. Likely, though, what to do if the SEC thinks they'll play along if it gets the idea that this access to young talent means everything.

One question is whether a super-league can exist without a CBA and some form of a draft. This interim stage doesn't seem very stable - throwing seven-figure guarantees at teenagers sounds more '80s USFL than sound policy.

But how does the AAU-level universities thing remain all that relevant once we reach the point of a new model that's essentially the NFL? These aren't college students, they're mercenaries for hire.

Let's note here: I haven't said I thought the new model would thrive. I think it kills the golden goose frankly, though it may be an extended terminal illness.
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Old 06-29-2022, 02:56 AM   #2662
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But how does the AAU-level universities thing remain all that relevant once we reach the point of a new model that's essentially the NFL? These aren't college students, they're mercenaries for hire.

Let's note here: I haven't said I thought the new model would thrive. I think it kills the golden goose frankly, though it may be an extended terminal illness.

It relates to the brand. The SEC can certainly compete with NIL money and it has the geography advantage, but once this all shakes out and we finally get to the other side, the brands aren't worth as much (Texas and Texas A&M being the exceptions).

Will we get to the other side? Harbaugh made headlines while he was at Stanford by complaining that when he was at Michigan, he wasn't allowed to be a real student. The idea that college football and basketball players are amateurs and students... it's been an illusion for a long, long time. People seem OK with that.

What we have now is not sustainable. But I think it could be if there's some sort of CBA and none of these $9.5 million handshakes.
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Old 06-29-2022, 06:30 AM   #2663
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To me the NIL has really mucked things up. I can handle giving athletes more money (in addition to their scholarships) but some of the current $ don't belong in a college setting. But the genie is out of the bottle ...
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Old 06-29-2022, 10:59 AM   #2664
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I continue to be all for this. It's totally the wild wild west out there right now. A system will form, they always do, and the market will correct itself, but I find it pretty interesting and exciting to watch it all unfold. My school, Michigan, will suffer and get even further left behind, but it will shake things up a little bit, which is always interesting.

The Big 10 reported $769 million in revenue in 2020 ($680 in 2021). So, there is big, big money and it's about time it goes to the men who put it all of the work and sacrifice.
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Old 06-29-2022, 02:02 PM   #2665
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It relates to the brand. The SEC can certainly compete with NIL money and it has the geography advantage, but once this all shakes out and we finally get to the other side, the brands aren't worth as much (Texas and Texas A&M being the exceptions).

Will we get to the other side? Harbaugh made headlines while he was at Stanford by complaining that when he was at Michigan, he wasn't allowed to be a real student. The idea that college football and basketball players are amateurs and students... it's been an illusion for a long, long time. People seem OK with that.

What we have now is not sustainable. But I think it could be if there's some sort of CBA and none of these $9.5 million handshakes.

If people are OK with the illusion that college football and basketball players are amateurs and students, shouldn't those sports be able to maintain its current success and possibly grow if they separate the players who have the potential to earn those $9.5 million handshakes from actual amateurs and students?

I just finished watching the College Baseball World Series. I watched College Softball World Series, men's and women's lacrosse championships before that over the last month or so. Maybe it is because I have no idea about what the effects are from NIL on those sports or if any of the players are getting any money. I am sure they are not getting $9.5 million. Either way, those events looked and felt like I was watching college students playing college sports.

We can have the college football and basketball that only includes real students and amateurs. We see it at the FCS levels and below in football and Division II and below in basketball. I don't think schools and conference would generate the same revenue and the same quality of play if we took away the illusion and ensured that the games were being played by real students and amateurs. I guess everyone has a choice to make about which is more important to them.
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Old 06-29-2022, 02:37 PM   #2666
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It's largely a regional sport NOW if you're honest about it.

Yeah, outside of an occasional great OSU, it is mostly just schools in the Southeast that matter. Even when you get a once-in-a-generation season from Notre Dame, Oregon, or Michigan, they get throttled by whatever SEC team gets thrown in their way.

I don't know how it plays out and whether it's good or bad for the league overall. But if they added 12-20 top schools from around the country, I don't see what the problem is. Much more competitive games on a weekly basis. No need to watch Alabama whoop up on Samford or whatever.
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Old 06-29-2022, 02:57 PM   #2667
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Yeah, outside of an occasional great OSU, it is mostly just schools in the Southeast that matter. Even when you get a once-in-a-generation season from Notre Dame, Oregon, or Michigan, they get throttled by whatever SEC team gets thrown in their way.

I don't know how it plays out and whether it's good or bad for the league overall. But if they added 12-20 top schools from around the country, I don't see what the problem is. Much more competitive games on a weekly basis. No need to watch Alabama whoop up on Samford or whatever.

That's one of the things (but only a small'ish part) that I think will lead to this direction being the end rather than a new beginning.

Those Samford games matter more than people outside those markets realize. Most fans in the rabid markets see games in person for the first time against them, Gardner-Webb, etc et al, as season ticket holders either sell or even give away those tickets. Those pilgrimages to the football holy site matter in terms of connectivity, and there are exponentially more "sidewalk alums" than actual alums. You eventually don't have the massive fan base if you strip away that connection / opportunity for connection.
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Old 06-29-2022, 03:44 PM   #2668
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Michigan had a ton of momentum at the end of last season and weird Harbaugh has proceeded to kick himself over and over in the balls ever since. He immediately starts a public campaign for an NFL job and loses both Coordinators and his director of recruiting as a result.

It seems like UM has the same NIL collective as everyone else but they don't introduce it to recruits in the same way as nearly every other school. There's no way Michigan State should be able to outperform UM in this area. It's just complete incompetence.

Also, do we have to elevate the shitty half of the SEC. I'm not comfortable pretending like Arkansas, SC, Vandy, etc. belong in some kind of elite conference.
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Old 06-29-2022, 03:50 PM   #2669
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I just joined the collective for Tennessee. I wanted to see what was going on after the dust settled. I gave it almost a full year.

Right now, it's the same donation I make to the St. Louis chapter's scholarship fund.
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Old 06-29-2022, 03:57 PM   #2670
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I don't know what the SEC would do with the lower level schools in the conference. Guessing there is some contract with the schools currently involved.

Arkansas is bad now, but not egregious for the conference from a historical perspective. South Carolina seems to be improving. Vandy is a strange fit but I feel like maybe the conference likes to have an elite academic school in there for credibility.
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Old 06-29-2022, 04:18 PM   #2671
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I don't know what the SEC would do with the lower level schools in the conference. Guessing there is some contract with the schools currently involved.

Arkansas is bad now, but not egregious for the conference from a historical perspective. South Carolina seems to be improving. Vandy is a strange fit but I feel like maybe the conference likes to have an elite academic school in there for credibility.

I'd probably argue that Arkansas today probably has a better claim to elevation than SC. That comes from a conversation we had here in the batcave about what's reasonable vs overachieving at a number of programs, those 2 and Kentucky being among them.

But none are more than a bad hire away from being disaster areas again (which can happen to anybody ... Bama wandered in the desert for quite a while not THAT long ago)

And there isn't really a scenario where Vandy football should remain in a futuristic SEC, nor really one where I believe they'd really want to.
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Old 06-29-2022, 04:29 PM   #2672
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I think they'd like the money from staying in the SEC, but realistically, they'd fare much worse in a superleague and I can't imagine it being much fun for Vanderbilt.

They would make sense in a revamped Big 10 I suppose. Nashville is not a terrible market for the Big 10 network to expand to and they'd fit in academically pretty well.
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Old 06-29-2022, 04:33 PM   #2673
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Michigan had a ton of momentum at the end of last season and weird Harbaugh has proceeded to kick himself over and over in the balls ever since. He immediately starts a public campaign for an NFL job and loses both Coordinators and his director of recruiting as a result.

It seems like UM has the same NIL collective as everyone else but they don't introduce it to recruits in the same way as nearly every other school. There's no way Michigan State should be able to outperform UM in this area. It's just complete incompetence.

Also, do we have to elevate the shitty half of the SEC. I'm not comfortable pretending like Arkansas, SC, Vandy, etc. belong in some kind of elite conference.

I think there was a part of Harbaugh that was so angry about being forced to take a pay cut when he wasn't winning big games despite having talented teams that when he finally put it all together and got his system working, he decided to make a statement of some sort.

I'm not sure he ever intended to leave for the Vikings. But the second he took that interview, he lost everything. If it's just a one-year recruiting blip in the end, they have the talent to absorb it. If not, he won't be here to deal with the fallout.

My understanding of the NIL issue here is that Michigan will not offer recruits anything. They just say "come here and you'll have the opportunity to make a lot of money" while just about everyone else says, "the NCAA is dead, we'll give you money to sign that letter." Saban can even say it with a straight face while complaining that Texas A&M is somehow cheating by doing the same thing.

So, Wild West. And we're here because we've never really answered the question why college athletics should still matter if we drop the veneer and stop pretending college athletes are amateurs who "get paid" with scholarships.

Major college football is the second-biggest sports league in the world. Mostly made up of players whose goal (realistically or not) is to become part of the biggest sports league in the world. It's an apprenticeship where the apprentices are actually generating a lot of revenue. This is a unique situation and requires a unique solution.

I find it interesting that the colleges in the Ivy League, seeing the hypocrisy decades before anyone else did, got out of this business long ago. Now, decades later, you go into the Ivy footprint and sports is more like it is in the rest of the world - the pros draw all the interest and the colleges have amateur club sports. Go anywhere else, and it's entirely different.
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Old 06-30-2022, 12:50 AM   #2674
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Iowa is going to beat out Alabama for the #1 OT in the 2023 class.

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Old 06-30-2022, 01:07 PM   #2675
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USC and UCLA to the Big 10? This has been rumored for a few months but it's picking up steam.

I'd like to see Oregon and Washington join along but I guess we'll see.
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:09 PM   #2676
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USC in the Big 10 before Notre Dame
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:19 PM   #2677
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:24 PM   #2678
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This is turbostupid
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:24 PM   #2679
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Oof. Hope we don’t get left out in the cold but I suspect we team up with Oregon and end up in the BIG10 also.
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:29 PM   #2680
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Major College Football is going to become a pro league of ~40 teams centered around the SEC and Big 10.

Instead of going through this decades-long awkward birthing process, they should just get a three person committee (Condi Rice and two others) and give them Czar powers to just set how its going to be.
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:32 PM   #2681
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Oof. Hope we don’t get left out in the cold but I suspect we team up with Oregon and end up in the BIG10 also.

You’d have to think they will, but it will be interesting to see how the state governments work. Will they try to leverage OSU and WSU? That is reportedly one of the things that blew up the PAC getting Oklahoma and Texas last time around. Washington and Oregon seem like they would be a pretty good add with or without the California teams.
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:33 PM   #2682
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:42 PM   #2683
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UNC and UVA seem like the most interesting remaining prizes since they could easily fit in the SEC OR B10 and have a lot of academic pull.
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:49 PM   #2684
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“The entire Pac should join the Big Ten. Then they can have a West Division and an East Division. They could then have the winners play a championship game. Make a big deal out of it. Maybe have a parade. Give it a fancy name. Could be fun.”
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:57 PM   #2685
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Oof. Hope we don’t get left out in the cold but I suspect we team up with Oregon and end up in the BIG10 also.

Big-10 is at 14. UCLA and USC make it 16. Unless they are going to expand further, the MWC looks fun!
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:57 PM   #2686
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UNC and UVA seem like the most interesting remaining prizes since they could easily fit in the SEC OR B10 and have a lot of academic pull.

With what are effectively pro leagues with pro players, what difference does academic pull really make?
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Old 06-30-2022, 01:57 PM   #2687
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Curious to see how Harbaugh avoids playing UCLA now
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Old 06-30-2022, 02:16 PM   #2688
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“The entire Pac should join the Big Ten. Then they can have a West Division and an East Division. They could then have the winners play a championship game. Make a big deal out of it. Maybe have a parade. Give it a fancy name. Could be fun.”

The Chrysanthemum Bowl!
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Old 06-30-2022, 02:32 PM   #2689
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Sort of wondering if Notre Dame will enter a "shit or get off the pot" moment soon where they have to pick a conference.
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Old 06-30-2022, 02:55 PM   #2690
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That was unexpected. I don't know whether to like it or dislike it. It certainly doesn't help the non-revenue sports, thinking about travel costs.

This should finish off the Big Twelve as a major. If the Pac 12 responds, its candidates are limited and probably include Kansas, maybe Iowa State to pair with the Jayhawks. Rice would be a possibility as well, but their leadership has been steadfast in its opposition to growing the athletic programs. The Mountain West doesn't have strong candidates - New Mexico may be the best fit, but not ideal.

Things are changing so quickly. What does the ACC do aside from hope that Notre Dame can't handle the parachute fees and has no interest in the Pac 12?

In answer to Jon's wondering about why academics matter? They don't, in the sense that a few spots in the international ratings don't mean anything. But they do, in terms of building a brand. The AAU universities have research standards. That, in turn, draws the people who build companies, have more disposable income, build endowments, etc. Just like 32 extraordinarily wealthy groups run the NFL, a small set of big players generate university endowments and build international brands.

None of this matters to most of us, and we've seen that one person can turn Oklahoma State into a viable sports brand. But in the new world, if it's all to be sustained, this is where it comes from. For now, in the Wild West period, a well-organized NIL machine could make anyone a power at any level. Even Deion Sanders himself might do it. But longer term, drawing in the advertising dollars, the academic research world and the brands that follow probably have the staying power.
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Old 06-30-2022, 03:05 PM   #2691
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In answer to Jon's wondering about why academics matter? They don't, in the sense that a few spots in the international ratings don't mean anything. But they do, in terms of building a brand. The AAU universities have research standards. That, in turn, draws the people who build companies, have more disposable income, build endowments, etc. Just like 32 extraordinarily wealthy groups run the NFL, a small set of big players generate university endowments and build international brands.

My contention, I suppose, is that the athletic brand and the university brand will become increasingly unrelated to all aside from the unwashed masses (sidewalk alums in some markets, completely disconnected in others)

Think of it like ... {searches for reasonable example of what I mean } ... almost like companies who attach their brand to sports teams. Nobody actually thinks that Red Bull is a superior drink just because they're name is on an F1 team.

The days of "win on Sunday, sell on Monday" (the old NASCAR model) is largely gone by the wayside IMO, at least with regard to non-grocery items.

Yes, I realize that calls into question the actual value of a lot of the corporate sponsorships that exist ... but I've ALWAYS questioned the real cost/benefit (opposed to perceived) of a lot of those.

And yes, I in turn then question the benefit (and eventual longevity) of directly associating the universities with their athletic departments at the "Superleague" level.
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Old 06-30-2022, 03:21 PM   #2692
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Originally Posted by JonInMiddleGA View Post
And yes, I in turn then question the benefit (and eventual longevity) of directly associating the universities with their athletic departments at the "Superleague" level.

I end up there as well. But without that coupling, you end up dismantling a revenue source that for the 65 major college football teams alone, adds up to more than $5 billion per year in revenue. There's no way around the usual relationship between semi-pro and pro in terms of revenue.

I think it has to be tied to the brands somehow. And then run by some sort of commissioner separate from the NCAA approach that has to fit about a thousand colleges and universities and a couple of dozen sports, almost all of which lose money.

If emerging rumors are correct, the Big Ten may be trying to form some sort of complete league, which means they would want the other Pac Twelve major prizes of Stanford, California and Washington. Otherwise, I'm struggling to see why UCLA and USC are interested. It made more sense for Texas and Oklahoma to leave the sinking ship of the Big Twelve. This doesn't, unless there's a bigger plan.
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Old 06-30-2022, 03:28 PM   #2693
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PAC-12 has been a disaster for years now and I think all those schools would jump at the chance to move to a better conference. Their TV schedule alone should have forced some teams to flat-out leave and become independent.
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Old 06-30-2022, 03:29 PM   #2694
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I would even entertain the insane conspiracy that Larry Scott was a plant from the Big 10 or SEC meant to destroy that conference. Sort of like the rumor Bettman was put in place by David Stern to make sure the NHL never competed.
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Old 06-30-2022, 04:01 PM   #2695
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USC in the Big 10 before Notre Dame
Notre Dame wants to be a national university, not a regional one. They figure they'll always have the population declining midwest/Chicago market just from their location and being able to pick a few area opponents, thus they've always wanted to play a game in Texas every other year, a game in California every other year, and paired with the ACC based in the population growing Sun Belt region. (And they have as much cachet as anyone in college sports does between the Catholic and Irish parts. But mostly the northeast is just irrelevant.)

Btw how much does the Big Ten regret inviting Nebraska and Rutgers? Maybe Nebraska was necessary to facilitate the Big 12's downfall (though Texas probably would have blown that up eventually anyways), but imagine if they could pull UNC/Duke as well as USC/UCLA?
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Old 06-30-2022, 04:07 PM   #2696
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They should call it the continental conference (or congress) since it runs from LA to NY.
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Old 06-30-2022, 04:32 PM   #2697
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I think that we put Condi, Jim, and Jon on the "figure this shit out" committee.
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Old 06-30-2022, 04:43 PM   #2698
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Originally Posted by BishopMVP View Post
Notre Dame wants to be a national university, not a regional one. They figure they'll always have the population declining midwest/Chicago market just from their location and being able to pick a few area opponents, thus they've always wanted to play a game in Texas every other year, a game in California every other year, and paired with the ACC based in the population growing Sun Belt region. (And they have as much cachet as anyone in college sports does between the Catholic and Irish parts. But mostly the northeast is just irrelevant.)

Btw how much does the Big Ten regret inviting Nebraska and Rutgers? Maybe Nebraska was necessary to facilitate the Big 12's downfall (though Texas probably would have blown that up eventually anyways), but imagine if they could pull UNC/Duke as well as USC/UCLA?

I would say they regret Nebraska, but Rutgers got the Big 10 Network into the NY media market.
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Old 06-30-2022, 04:44 PM   #2699
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I've seen people recommend this book when talking about what's happening in CFB. It's a really fascinating read.

https://www.amazon.com/Club-English-.../dp/1328506452
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Old 06-30-2022, 06:51 PM   #2700
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Apparently, the Big Ten presidents just met and unanimously approved the applications.

Remaining AAU schools in Pac Twelve: California, Stanford, Colorado, Utah, Oregon, Washington, Arizona.

For now, figure the ACC's media rights/exit fees prevent movement from that quarter. Notre Dame is included in the media rights discussion, and that's set through 2036. No sense talking about SEC schools leaving - they will get more per year than Big Ten schools.

That leaves Kansas as the only other AAU school with a major athletics program (Buffalo, Rice and Tulane don't seem interested in that type of growth). Iowa State was essentially booted from the AAU this year, not that it made sense for the Big Ten anyway.

If sources are saying the B16 Ten isn't done yet, and I have to think UCLA and USC wouldn't have done this otherwise, they have some great targets there.

Then, does the Big 12 make a move, or does the Pac Twelve try to expand? Just a couple of weeks ago, the Pac Twelve's new commissioner was saying he thought losing a school was impossible. The Big 12 has a new commissioner on the way. Do they end up merging? Forming something new, pulling a Mountain West (when the old WAC reached 16 schools, it imploded, and the top eight formed the Mountain West). If they thin out too much, inviting schools that don't really fit the Pac Twelve framework like Boise State or San Diego State, does that work at all?
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