SEC Talk: "The National College Football League"

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Mon Sep 05, 2011 9:25 am

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SEC Talk: "The National College Football League"

This thread is where you can talk about the SEC, “The National College Football League” according to Coach Nick Saban at the University of Alabama. I agree 100%!
Last edited by Kenny Wilder on Mon Oct 03, 2011 9:13 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:33 pm

College Football - In The Field: LSU vs. Oregon Wrapup
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LSU shows why SEC is the Top Dog

By Tim Cowlishaw The Dallas Morning News
First Posted: September 03, 2011 - 9:19 pm
Last Updated: September 03, 2011 - 9:19 pm


ARLINGTON, Texas — When Jerry Jones reached deep into his own pockets to finish Cowboys Stadium (admittedly after collecting all he could from local taxpayers), he dreamed of creating a great showcase for one of the nation’s most storied football teams.

He just didn’t know it would be for LSU.

After finishing their 2010 season with a nice thrashing of Texas A&M in the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic played here, the Tigers opened their 2011 season with a convincing 40-27 win over No. 3-ranked Oregon.

It was a fitting reminder of where the real power lies in college football.

The Ducks may have played in the last BCS national championship, and Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott was questioned by the media here as if he holds all the cards in the conference-shuffling that dominates the major college scene.

But on the field, it’s the SEC that rules the game. LSU has been as instrumental as any team in the conference in igniting and sustaining that powerful run.

The SEC has won the last five BCS national title games and six of the last eight. The Tigers own two of those trophies. The first of those was achieved by Nick Saban, who took an ill-fated detour to the Miami Dolphins before restoring Alabama as a national power.

But Les Miles has more than maintained what Saban began, and it was clear Saturday night that these fourth-ranked Tigers (soon to replace Oregon in the No. 3 spot) are in position to contend once again.

It won’t be an easy journey. It never is in the SEC, which really doesn’t have to pursue expansion in order to maintain its spot in college football’s driver’s seat.

The SEC ruled the land before Texas A&M got fed up with Texas and set the stage to become its 13th member.

The SEC will very clearly continue to rule. That’s not to say No. 1-ranked Oklahoma or some other team couldn’t disrupt the SEC’s five-year championship run. That will happen this season, next year or soon enough.

But the SEC in general and these Tigers in particular won’t go quietly.

Even if the defending national champions gave the appearance Saturday of a team that will miss Cam Newton desperately, barely squeaking past Utah State, the Tigers showed they could win without their suspended quarterback, Jordan Jefferson, among others.

Jarrett Lee didn’t have to outperform Oregon quarterback Darron Thomas; he just needed to limit his mistakes. And that was a lot to ask of the Brenham senior who threw 16 interceptions — seven were returned for touchdowns — during the 2008 season before vanishing to the bench.

Lee should have finished with better numbers since he was hurt by some early drops Saturday night. He still managed 99 yards on 10-of-22 passing with one touchdown.

While Lee threw no interceptions, Oregon lost three fumbles that were turned quickly — in one case, instantly — into LSU touchdowns. One was a fumbled punt that cornerback Tyrann Mathieu turned into points. The others set up touchdown drives of 21 and 41 yards.

Despite losing their top rusher in 2010, Stevan Ridley, to the New England Patriots, LSU nearly had two backs rush for 100 yards. Starter Spencer Ware, who ran for 102 yards against the Aggies in that 41-24 Cotton Bowl win, had 98 yards on 26 carries, while sophomore Michael Ford came off the bench to gain 96 on just 14 carries.

Both outperformed Oregon’s LaMichael James, who finished third in the Heisman voting last fall but was held to 57 yards on 18 carries by a very swift and deep LSU defense.

The Tigers lose good players each year in the NFL draft. On Saturday night, in a stadium their legion of fans has come to embrace, the Tigers showed they can even suffer a few suspensions and still overwhelm a really good team like Oregon with their talent.

As long as that’s the case, the Pac-12 commissioner can turn his league into the Pac-16 if he so chooses. Even at that, the road to the national championship will go through places like Tuscaloosa, Ala., Gainesville, Fla., and, quite clearly, Baton Rouge, La.
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Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:52 pm

Alabama vs Kent State Highlights (2011)

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AJ McCarron leads No. 2 Alabama over Kent State

Gameball goes to... Trent Richardson, who punched in three TDs, including two in the first quarter, on 13 carries.

Stat of the game... 6. Alabama's ferocious defense allowed Nick Saban's alma mater just six first downs.

Associated Press
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Alabama put some smiles back on the faces of the people of Tuscaloosa and gave a city rebuilding from a devastating tornado a reason to cheer. Often.

AJ McCarron stepped up in Alabama's quarterback race Saturday, throwing for a touchdown and 226 yards as the Crimson Tide beat Kent State 48-7 in its first game since the twister that destroyed thousands of homes and killed 50 people within a few miles of campus four months ago.

Their helmets decorated with small ribbon stickers in rememberance of the victims, players said it felt good to be back on the field.

AJ McCarron and Phillip Sims each threw two interceptions Saturday. The last time the Crimson Tide were intercepted four times in a game was Nov. 30, 2002, against Hawaii.

"It was great to get out here, and there was kind of a feeling of getting things back to normal," said offensive lineman Barrett Jones. "So much had gone on in this offseason. We were really pleased to get back to football, what this town is famous for."

Trent Richardson, who scored three touchdowns rushing, said the team has a reason to win aside from the usual reasons.

"It was a tragic disaster for us, and we were trying to overcome it and bring joy back to the town," he said.

Vying with Phillip Sims to replace Greg McElroy, McCarron had a 24-yard scoring toss to Marquis Maze and finished 14-of-23 passing.

McCarron was hardly perfect, throwing two interceptions. Sims also threw two interceptions -- one that set up Kent State's score -- and finished 7 of 14 for 73 yards.

Coach Nick Saban didn't name either quarterback his permanent starter afterward, and he said some of the four picks were forgivable because of tipped balls.

"AJ, having a little more poise, having played a little bit more, probably played with a little more poise today, but we have a lot of confidence in Phillip and in most cases he plays extremely well," said Saban, who graduated from Kent State and worked there as an assistant coach. "I think he learned a lot out there today and I think he will be a very good player for us here."

Starting in place of departed Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram, Richardson ran for 37 yards on 13 carries.

The season-opener was a tuneup for Alabama before next week's trip to Penn State. Before the game, the school honored police, firefighters and other first responders during a pregame ceremony that included Gov. Robert Bentley.

The raucous, 101,821-seat Bryant-Denny Stadium fell still during a moment of silence to remember tornado victims, and the band performed a tribute at halftime. Fans in the uppermost seats could see twisted trees and mangled homes along the trail of destruction in the distance.

Several Kent State players visited Tuscaloosa in July to help with tornado relief, and Crimson Tide fans applauded as the Golden Flashes jogged on to the field before kickoff. 'Bama fans had sent messages on social media sites all week urging the Bryant-Denny crowd to welcome the visitors nicely rather than booing, and Kent State players noticed the reception.

"That was real classy," said quarterback Spencer Keith, who completed 20 of 47 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown with one interception.

Things didn't go as well for Kent State once the game began, however.

Led by Trey Depriest's 10 tackles, the Alabama defense held the Golden Flashes to 90 yards total offense and minus-9 rushing.

The Golden Flashes' lone TD was set up by Norman Wolfe intercepting Sims and returning the ball to the Alabama 3. Keith found Justin Thompson alone in the end zone two plays later after an incompletion.

Other than that, offensive highlights were few for Kent State.

Alabama was leading 21-0 on McCarron's scoring pass to Maze and Richardson's TD runs of 1 and 9 yards before Kent State got its initial first down midway through the second quarter. The overpowered Flashes finished with only six first downs, compared to 24 for Alabama.

Richardson added another touchdown on a 1-yard run, and 246-pound Jalston Fowler ran 49 yards for a score and led Tide rushers with 69 yards on four carries. Eddie Lacy had eight rushes for 69 yards and a 1-yard touchdown.

Playing both receiver and returning punts, Maze accounted for 214 yards -- 96 on returns and another 118 on eight catches.

Kent State hasn't beaten a Southeastern Conference team in 10 tries. The Flashes last played an SEC team in 2007, losing 56-20 at Kentucky.
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Mon Sep 05, 2011 3:03 pm

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War Eagle!
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Mon Sep 12, 2011 5:55 am

Where is the best place to go and watch the U of K - U of L football game on saturday?
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Mon Sep 12, 2011 2:07 pm

We enjoy eating at Sailor's Grill and I believe they have a couple of large screen tv's plus you have a great view of the bay! They also have a fantastic bakery there as well! :D
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Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:36 pm

Tentative plan for Mizzou to join SEC, Auburn would move to East, sources say

Published: Tuesday, September 20, 2011, 5:14 PM
By The Birmingham News


The Southeastern Conference and the University of Missouri have informally agreed that, barring new developments, the school will join the league and that Auburn University will move to the SEC East Division, according to two people familiar with the discussions.

A majority of presidents has endorsed the informal agreement, the sources said.

Early Tuesday night, the SEC issued a statement: "The Southeastern Conference has not agreed formally or informally to accept any institution other than Texas A&M and there have not been conference discussions regarding changes in divisional alignment."

The league already plans to add Texas A&M as its 13th member, provided potential legal challenges from some remaining Big 12 members disappear. Missouri, also a member of the Big 12, would be the 14th member of the SEC.

A timetable for when Missouri would join the SEC, if the informal agreement becomes official, was not immediately known.

Earlier today, The Kansas City Star reported Missouri has an offer to join the SEC and that the league is willing to wait for an answer until the Big 12's future is decided.

SEC spokesman Charles Bloom said the SEC has not extended "any invitation" to any school other than Texas A&M. Bloom declined to say whether the SEC and Missouri have had any discussions.

Because both Missouri and Texas A&M are located to the western side of the SEC's basic footprint, that prompted discussions of moving a current West Division school to the East Division. Auburn is the easternmost school in the West Division. A third person familiar with the discussions confirmed that Auburn would move to the East if Missouri joins the league.

If Auburn moved to the SEC East, that could cause the Iron Bowl date to be changed. Moving Alabama-Auburn from the final week of the regular season would eliminate the possibility of a rematch the following week in the SEC Championship Game.

Auburn President Jay Gogue said Sept. 8 he would not be bothered if Auburn moved to the SEC East to accommodate a 14-team conference. Gogue said a benefit for Auburn would be renewing annual games against old rivals Florida and Tennessee, and that Auburn would pick Alabama to be an annual cross-division partner.

"If that's what it took, if you ever went to 14 and needed to make it work, that wouldn't be something I would be upset about," Gogue said.
In an interview last week, Auburn Athletics Director Jay Jacobs supported Gogue's position.

"We have so many students come from Florida, Tennessee, Georgia, they come on campus and say, 'Why aren't we playing Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina? ' " Jacobs said. "I think Dr. Gogue's point is, which is mine too, whatever is best for the league to make it work, we're willing to do that.

"We went through this a year ago. I just think until all that happens, until we know what the outcome is going to be, why spend a lot of time and energy concerned about who's going to play who?"

When the SEC added Arkansas and South Carolina for the 1992 season, the conference wanted competitive balance between the divisions. That's how Auburn landed in the West even though it is farther east than Vanderbilt, which plays in the East Division.

The SEC identified six traditional powers and divided them accordingly: Florida, Georgia and Tennessee in the East, and Alabama, Auburn and LSU in the West. If Auburn shifted divisions, four of the six traditional SEC powers would be in the East.

Adding Missouri to the SEC would bring two large television markets to the SEC. St. Louis has the nation's 21st-largest, and Kansas City is 31st. The state touches three SEC states: Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky.

"Missouri makes some sense," said Neal Pilson, a television consultant and former president of CBS Sports. "It's got some big markets. It's a prestigious academic institution. It would add a rather populous state to the SEC footprint. And it wouldn't leapfrog into another part of the country, which I don't think the SEC wants to do."

Discussions with Missouri have been sensitive on a number of fronts. The SEC agreed to accept Texas A&M on the condition that remaining Big 12 members waive their right to sue the SEC.

Also, Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton is the chairman of the Big 12 Board of Directors and has said publicly he is working to keep the Big 12 together. He told The St. Louis Post-Dispatch last week there is no complication for him to serve as chairman of the Big 12 while also working in Missouri's best interests.

On Monday, the boards of regents of two big-name Big 12 schools, Texas and Oklahoma, authorized their presidents to explore new conferences. Oklahoma's president said it is considering the Pac-12, as might Texas. The presidents of both schools have said remaining in the Big 12 remains an option.

The Oklahoman reported late this afternoon that Oklahoma is considering remaining in the Big 12, but only in a "reformed" version with rules for Texas' Longhorn Network and the removal of Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe.
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Thu Sep 22, 2011 11:42 pm

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Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:21 pm

ESPN.com: College Football

Texas A&M officially joins SEC

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Texas A&M is set to join the Southeastern Conference, the league said Sunday, possibly signaling legal hurdles have been cleared for the Aggies to leave the Big 12.

The SEC announced the move will be effective next July, and said Texas A&M will participate in all sports during the 2012-13 academic year. That gives the SEC 13 members and its first addition since South Carolina and Arkansas joined in 1992.

The Aggies' defection from the Big 12 had been held up by the possibility of legal action from Baylor and other members, but sources told ESPN's Joe Schad that the school's play in the conference next year
is "unconditional." If any school, including Baylor, files litigation against A&M, it would be addressed at that time.

Maisel: Aggies were ready to bolt

After a century or so of being disrespected, teased, mocked and scorned, A&M had enough and left for the SEC, writes Ivan Maisel. Story

A Big 12 administrator said neither the SEC nor Texas A&M have asked any of the Big 12 schools to waive their right to sue. The person spoke Sunday night on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.

A&M's rights change in course was due, a source told ESPN.com's Andy Katz, to the sense the Big 12 will now stay together following the Pac 12's decision not to expand. The source said there is now no longer any fear that the remaining schools will claim they were financially damaged by the Aggies' departure.

SEC presidents and chancellors voted in favor of the move on Sept. 6, and a source said A&M's negotiation of an exit fee with the Big 12 "will now begin in earnest."

"We are excited to begin competition in the nation's premier athletic conference," Texas A&M President R. Bowen Loftin said in the statement.
It's unclear if the SEC will add a 14th member for next season or go with unbalanced divisions. Rumored possibilities include the Big 12's Missouri and West Virginia of the Big East.

Texas A&M began the courtship in July, unhappy with rival Texas' Longhorn Network -- a 20-year, $300 million venture with ESPN -- and stirred another turbulent period for the Big 12.

The Aggies, who play Arkansas on Saturday, give the SEC entry into major TV markets such as Houston and Dallas.

"Texas A&M is a nationally prominent institution on and off the field and a great fit for the SEC tradition of excellence -- athletically, academically and culturally," Commissioner Mike Slive said in the statement.

Slive, Loftin and others will hold a news conference Monday evening in College Station, Texas.

Four Big 12 teams -- Oklahoma, Texas, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State -- had explored moving to the Pac-12, which decided not to expand this year.

Oklahoma President David Boren said the nine remaining schools besides Texas A&M agreed last week to give a six-year grant of their first- and second-tier television rights to the Big 12. That means all revenue from the top television games -- shown currently on networks owned by ABC/ESPN and Fox -- would continue to go to the Big 12 even if a school bolts to another league.

That deal, however, had not been finalized.

The Big 12 also ousted Commissioner Dan Beebe last week after five years and replaced him with former Big Eight Commissioner Chuck Neinas on an interim basis.

"I am personally saddened to see Texas A&M depart from the Big 12, and wish I had the opportunity to visit the campus to sit down and talk with their administration," Neinas said in a release. "We will continue to work diligently in securing the long-term stability of the Big 12.

"Now that the status of Texas A&M has officially been determined, the membership can focus on the desired course for the Conference moving forward. Although no timeline has been established, an expeditious pursuit is anticipated."

A&M's official departure from the Big 12 was considered the next step needed to determine where this round of conference realignment is headed.

Once that is done, the SEC can decide on a 14th member, if it wants one and the Big 12 can replace the Aggies.

Texas A&M moved to the Big 12 after 82 years in the Southwest Conference and its departure to the SEC will mark the first time the Aggies won't be in a conference with rival Texas and Baylor.

Some are worried A&M's departure will jeopardize the future of the annual football game, currently played on Thanksgiving night, between the Aggies and Texas.

"There is some lamenting about (losing) some of the good competition we've had over the years with everyone (in the Big 12)," Texas A&M faculty athletic representative Tom Adair said. "Of course, Texas is the big one. I hope it will be worked out and we will continue."

It is one of the oldest rivalries in college football, with the teams first meeting in 1894.

Loftin said he'd like to continue the rivalry no matter what conference the Aggies were in when he announced the school's plans to explore its conference options in August.

However, even if the schools were able to work out a deal to meet for a nonconference football game each season, it would be nearly impossible to guarantee that other sports such as men's and women's basketball and baseball would be able to meet their biggest rivals each season.

Information from ESPN.com senior writers Andy Katz and Pat Forde, ESPN college football reporter Joe Schad and The Associated Press was used in this report.
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Sun Oct 02, 2011 10:12 am

Texas A&M…Welcome to the SEC!

Arkansas 42
Texas A&M 38


Aggies can't beat an SEC team

Texas A&M is about to join the SEC, but they haven't been able to beat 'em. They're 0-7 in their last seven chances and haven't topped an SEC team since 1995. Texas A&M Last 7 Meetings vs SEC Teams Result Site 2011 vs Arkansas L, 42-38 Cowboys Stadium 2011 vs LSU L, 41-24 Cotton Bowl 2010 vs Arkansas L, 24-17 Cowboys Stadium 2009 vs Georgia L, 44-20 Independence Bowl 2009 vs Arkansas L, 47-19 Cowboys Stadium 2005 vs Tennessee L, 38-7 Cotton Bowl 2000 vs Mississippi St L, 43-41 Independence Bowl >>Last win vs SEC team: 1995 vs LSU (regular season game)

Now you know why Texas and Oklahoma have no interest in joining the SEC. They would lose many games every year in competing in the "National College Football League", the SEC - thereby diminishing their chance to play in the National Championship Game. Now you also know why Florida State has no interest in being an SEC team.

Whoever plays in the National Championship Game in January will play an SEC team. Why does the SEC dominate the National Football Championships?

DEFENSE!
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Mon Oct 03, 2011 8:59 am

There is absolutely no question, Texas A&M is going to have to bump up the recruiting another notch to be able to compete in the SEC. They are also going to have to figure out how to build upon their fantastic starts. They start great and then fade.

One thing is for sure...the traditions and game day at Texas A&M are unmatched in the country. They will be a great addition to the SEC in my humble opinion.
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Mon Oct 03, 2011 9:11 am

Just ask Texas A&M: The SEC is no picnic

Makes you wonder if the folks at Missouri, set to vote on their conference intentions Tuesday, were taking notes. Or reconsidering a jump to the SEC.

PensacolaKid, I beleve that Texas A&M will be able to compete in the SEC, but not right away. I think their joining the SEC is great.
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Wed Oct 05, 2011 7:25 am

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The SEC needs Missouri more for image than for football

Atlanta Constitution
7:45 am October 5, 2011, by Mark Bradley


Missouri’s curators voted Tuesday to ponder the school’s Big 12 exit. Put simply, Missouri’s curators voted — unanimously, FYI — to bail on the Big 12. At issue now is what the school would bring to its new home, which is apt to be the SEC.

Here were pause to note that some folks see Missouri as a better fit in the Big Ten — the Tigers already have a heated basketball rivalry with Illinois — but the Big Ten hasn’t been overt in its ardor to expand. The Big Ten might be happy as is. The SEC needs a 14th member to offset Texas A&M.

The SEC also needs Missouri for another reason: This whole round of conference-hopping has given big-time college sports the look of me-first-and-everybody-else-last Wall Street, and that’s not the look you want in the year 2011. (It’s reality, but it’s still an unseemly image for institutions of supposed higher learning.) Missouri plays pretty good football and good basketball, but that’s not its greatest lure for the SEC.

Missouri is a state school in a state — heck, a region — where the SEC doesn’t have an outpost, and it would also deliver the St. Louis and the Kansas City television markets. (That’s an upgrade over A&M, which delivers the less-prestigious College Station market.) Those are nice things to have, but they’re not essential. Of greater importance: The SEC views Missouri as another vehicle in its quest to spruce up its academic image, which could use sprucing.

If it adds Missouri, the SEC will count four schools among the high-minded Association of American Universities. That’s double from a month ago. Texas A&M is an AAU member, and so are Florida and Vanderbilt. Both the Aggies and the Tigers play good enough football that they won’t sully the SEC’s brand, and the SEC doesn’t need an Oklahoma or a Texas to burnish its standing as the best football league. (Check the latest Associated Press poll: SEC teams are ranked first, second, 10th, 15th, 17th and 18th.)

The SEC has been measured in its approach to School No. 14. It didn’t fall over itself when Texas and Oklahoma were making eyes at the Pac-12. It didn’t so much pursue Texas A&M as it allowed itself to be pursued. Adding a 13th member just sort of happened. Adding a 14th will be a considered choice.

Adding Missouri would do more for the SEC’s image off the field than on, and that’s a consideration a lot of us missed when this whole round of choosing-up got going. The SEC is often regarded as the root of all collegiate evil, but this is one time when the league ruled by football is trying not to act as if football is the only thing that matters.

By landing Syracuse and Pittsburgh, the ACC all but destroyed the Big East. The SEC doesn’t need to destroy anything to ensure its survival; it’s the biggest conference today, and it’ll be the biggest 20 years from now. Mike Slive, the SEC’s commissioner, didn’t always carry water for King Football. He was the AD at Cornell and assistant AD at Dartmouth; he was also commissioner of the Great Midwest and Conference USA.

Slive is 71. He’s at an age where thoughts of legacy loom largest. (Indeed, at the SEC Media Days in Birmingham this summer the hot rumor, quickly refuted, was that Slive would announce his retirement.) He has presided over a decade of massive SEC growth, and now he wants to make sure that growth won’t be regarded, in the cold eye of history, as rampant pillaging.

When Mike Slive leaves this conference, he wants to be able to say, “We tried to do it the right way.” Others will quibble over the definition of “right,” but if the SEC pairs Missouri with Texas A&M it will be harder to make the case that the biggest league was utterly craven in its desires. Those are two good schools. They’ll broaden the base without rendering the league top-heavy. They’ll make the SEC not just bigger but better.

And that’s the key. As fascinating as the notion of the SEC with Texas and/or Oklahoma would have been, it would also have given rise to the charge of overkill. At some point the best league has to realize, “We’re good enough.” Slive and his associates have come to that quiet conclusion. If Missouri is indeed No. 14, the SEC will have done something the SEC doesn’t often do: It will have made a subtle splash.
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Fri Oct 07, 2011 6:02 pm

SEC Expansion: SEC likely to stop at 14 teams this fall

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Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:36 pm

Missouri takes another step toward leaving Big 12; SEC interested

Published: Friday, October 21, 2011, 3:28 PM
By The Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Missouri has taken another step toward leaving the Big 12 Conference and there is interest in the SEC in taking the Tigers.
The governing curators at Missouri unanimously gave Chancellor Brady Deaton the authority Friday to move the school out of the Big 12 if he decides that is in the school's best interest. Deaton, who had earlier been given the OK to explore options, gave no timeline for a decision but indicated that a move, if it happens, would not take much longer.

"We're not looking at a long time frame," Deaton said, adding that any move would anticipate playing in another conference beginning next season -- not in 2013 or farther out.

While Deaton avoided saying that he favors leaving the Big 12 or identifying the SEC as a potential landing spot, it was clear that the SEC is the target.

"We've provided information to the SEC," Deaton said at a news conference following a two-day curators' meeting, sitting alongside athletic director Mike Alden and other school officials.

SEC school presidents have informally discussed Missouri, and there's "certainly talk and interest" in adding the school, according to a person familiar with the situation. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the SEC has not publicly talked about the discussions.

There has been no formal vote by the presidents and one was not immediately scheduled, the person said. Deaton said discussions about realignment are ongoing and a "decision will be undertaken expeditiously."

Chuck Neinas, the Big 12 interim commissioner, noted that its board of directors has a regularly scheduled meeting in Irving, Texas, on Monday and "conference membership will be thoroughly discussed at that time."

"We look forward to discussing Missouri's future with the Big 12 Conference," he said in a statement. He declined to comment further when reached by telephone.

The league already has lost Nebraska (Big Ten) and Colorado (Pac-12) and will lose Texas A&M to the SEC next year when TCU joins. Losing Missouri would leave the league with nine teams, while the SEC will have 13 once the Aggies join.

Deaton said the conference's stability has been a significant concern with the departures of the three schools.

"Those actions, I think, in a sense, speak for themselves," he said. "They're part of the environment that we're recognizing and evaluating as we go forward."

But a big concern for Missouri is broadcast and cable television dollars, and in exploring a move to the SEC, the university is hoping to boost its revenue. An internal university document obtained recently by The Associated Press showed Missouri hopes to gain as much as $12 million annually in additional revenue in the SEC if other factors fall into place.
The school could also face a hefty exit fee from the Big 12.

Earlier this month, the Big 12 endorsed a plan require schools to give up their most lucrative TV rights to the league for six years in return for equal sharing of the revenue.

The plan, if approved, would give each school an estimated $20 million in June. The figure is expected to grow by 2013 when the league's new 13-year contract with Fox Sports kicks in and the Big 12's television contract with ABC/ESPN expires in 2016 and could bring in additional money when renegotiated.

The SEC, by contrast, distributed $18.3 million in revenue to each of its 12 members this year. But that league can also expect more lucrative contracts when the next round of TV rights negotiations occur.

"This is a very complex transaction to consider," said curators Chairman Warren Erdman. "We are taking our time to analyze all of the issues."
Missouri also directed Deaton to try to set up a holiday basketball tournament and annual football game in Kansas City with an unidentified rival -- Kansas would fit the bill -- moves designed to answer critics who say departing the Big 12 will gut storied traditions that date back decades. Missouri and Kansas have played each other in football for 119 years.
The move also is designed to blunt concerns that the Big 12 won't have a reason to continue holding its basketball championship tournament in Kansas City or schedule a Kansas-Missouri football game there if Missouri bolts the Big 12.

Ed McKechnie, chairman of the Kansas Board of Regents, which governs both the University of Kansas and Kansas State, said Missouri's departure from the Big 12 would be "a massive blow" to the area. He said it would be difficult to keep the basketball tournament in Kansas City if Missouri left.

"The traditions surrounding the Big 12 tournament are a big deal," McKechnie said. "I believe the Big 12 is the right place for KU and K-State."

Just this week, Kansas basketball coaches Bill Self and Bonnie Henrickson both said they wouldn't be inclined to play Missouri if the Tigers go elsewhere.

Erdman insisted that if Missouri leaves the Big 12, the curators are "committed to doing what we can to preserve the rich tradition and heritage that is very important to us here."

Missouri basketball guard Kim English said players don't care about the university's conference and that he's not losing any sleep over the possibility of not playing Kansas every year.

"It has nothing to do with players in general," English said. "I didn't come here just because it was the Big 12."
___
AP Sports Writer David Brandt contributed to this report. Also contributing were John Milburn in Topeka, Kan., and freelance writer Doug Tucker in Kansas City, Mo.
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