We covered conference realignment a couple weeks back. And as we predicted back then, Syracuse and Pittsburgh will be joining the ACC. Within days, Texas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State should join the Pac-12. The rest of the dominos are going to fall fast. It doesn’t matter whether you want this or not, it is going to happen. The fans are irrelevant in this whole process. And as prolific tweeter (and Gator alum) SI’s Andy Staples wrote, “you’ll keep watching.” It might suck, it might feel very weird for a year but you aren’t going anywhere. You are a college football fan.
So as we ponder these new four 16-team superconferences, the question arises what three teams should round out the future SEC? Before you answer, there are considerations. Geography is probably the most important thing. Does adding the school increase the SEC’s footprint, add a larger television market or infiltrate another conference’s foothold? Size of the fan base is important. The conference is going to want to make sure there are plenty of future consumers coming aboard. These first two points, which I submit are the most important, are covered in an excellent piece by the statistics savant Nate Silver at the New York Times blog.
Politics are going to play a role too. It has been speculated that Florida would never allow Florida State to enter the SEC. Georgia and South Carolina probably feel similarly about Georgia Tech and Clemson. But you get the feeling the money and power of the conference are going to trump those feelings.
So if you were the benevolent overlord of the SEC, which three teams would you add? If it was my call, I’m going with Clemson, Virginia Tech and Missouri. I want to add the DC area, expand the league’s footprint into the Midwest and lock up the largest fanbase outside of the SEC in the South. Hit me up on twitter (@shawn_kopelakis) with your thoughts.
Now onto the rankings. Oklahoma’s impressive performance at Ron Zook Field vaults them into the top spot. Florida State looked damn good as well and probably deserves a higher ranking. They went toe-to-toe with the Sooners with a raw backup QB. But some members of Bourbon Meyer are blind to anything good out of that cesspool that is the state capital, can you blame us? Of course, it is quite possible the best team in the state resides in Ybor City. And you’ll notice only 21 teams in the poll this week. We tried but it is damn near impossible to find more than 21 teams that could be labeled “good” at this point of the season.
4. Boise State
7. Oklahoma State
9. South Carolina
10. Virginia Tech
12. Florida State
13. Texas A&M
15. South Florida
16. West Virginia