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 @JRsec  @larryphelps20 No problem. Apologies as well if I came across as being heavy handed in my analysis. Realignment often becomes an emotional thing where we feel the need to defend our team/conference/region. Hell, I know I've done it in the past and will probably in the future as well. Thanks for the blog. Great aggregator for SEC info.

1 year, 10 months ago on Don’t Like The Idea Of 20-Team Conferences? Don’t Worry, They Won’t Last Long

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 @JRsec  @larryphelps20 I'm not suggesting the B1G will get all that they want. I never even suggested any of the  above would happen. I was just bringing to the table another reason for the "why's" in what is driving conferences to expand. In this particular case the B1G. And I obviously wasn't suggesting that all Senators or congressman from a given state will automatically support research $'s to be allocated to universities that share conference affiliation. Although I guarantee this happens more regularly than one would like to think. I am suggesting that all else being equal why wouldn't polticians work in concert to better their conference brethren knowing that support will be reciprocated for their state's institutions.

 

Maybe I'm misreading you, but you seem a bit defensive for some reason about this. I guess as fans since this is out of our control it might be frustrating. However, having a dialogue about the how's and why's all of this is transpiring is interesting. If this is going to devolve into "your region of the country is dying and nothing but a barren wasteland of empty factories" I guess I'll be on my way. I have little interest in arguing w/ strangers. I do like your guy's site to get the feel of what's happening in the best conference in the south. Have a good one.

 

 

 

1 year, 10 months ago on Don’t Like The Idea Of 20-Team Conferences? Don’t Worry, They Won’t Last Long

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 @JRsec Think of what the B1G seems to be attempting in terms of the character Vito Corleone in The Godfather. Why did all the other dons envy him so much? Because he had all the politicians in his grasp. And therefore he had all the influence and power to do as he wished. How does this relate to the B1G you might ask? Well, look at who they have added and are likely to add in the future....large, public, land-grant universities. So, look at the B1G's additions over the last 20 years: Penn St, Nebraska, Maryland and Rutgers. That's 4 new state flagship universities. That's also 8 additional US Senators. Now granted not all of those Senators are on the 30 member Senate Appropriations committee, but they still have influence. Who else is the B1g rumored to be after from the ACC....UNC/UVA/GT/Duke. Well, that's 2 more flagships and 2 elite private schools w/ prodigious yearly research outlays. So, if the B1G were to add those 4 they'd be getting 3 additional states and 6 more US Senators. If the B1G were at 18 schools w/ the above additions the B1G would have 14 different states w/ 28 US Senators.

 

So, why does all this matter you ask? Well, when it comes time for the appropriations committee and their subcommittees to divy up the annual dollars dedicated to universities and their various research endeavors this will come into play. Say the University of Maryland was competing against another school for research dollars in a given research project and only one was going to be allocated those fundsd. Don't you think Barbara Mikulski of Maryland would actively be soliciting her colleagues w/in the committee to support allocating those funds to big state U in her home state? Of course she would. So, she knocks on the door of Tom Harkin of Iowa or Dick Durbin of Illinois or Mike Johanns of Nebraska and says, "support UMD for this research grant and I'll give Iowa/Illinois/Nebraska strong support in allocating funds for their research ventures". Having over 25% of the US Senate sympathetic towards your conference's research desires is a big-time plus for the B1G. And while yes, on the surface it seems awfully Machiavellian. It also follows the old adage of "it's not what you know, it's who you know".

1 year, 10 months ago on Don’t Like The Idea Of 20-Team Conferences? Don’t Worry, They Won’t Last Long

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 @Roggespierre Oh I agree something like what you suggest is possible. Just highly highly unlikely. $100M or even $200M is still small potatoes when you consider most of the schools you listed are above a billion annually in research. I just don't see a school ditching a 60 year old academic consortium like the CIC and w/ additional schools rumored to be added to get to 18-20 that any of those would be willing to leave. From an academic/university mission standpoint it wouldn't make any sense. Now athletically it might. I'll give you that. But, as long as the underpinnings of a conference are more than simply a collaboration of athletic teams that conference will likely remain strong. Why do you think the SEC is embarking on something similar to the CIC of their own? For all the reasons the B10 initially did it of course, but it also adds the ancillary benefit of keeping the athletic side of things better connected.

1 year, 10 months ago on Don’t Like The Idea Of 20-Team Conferences? Don’t Worry, They Won’t Last Long

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The elephant in the room and the most likely conference to go to 18 or 20 is the B1G. In your rundown you list the transformation and distintegration of the various southern conferences. However, you fail to acknowledge that barring Michigan (who left the B1G in 1907 and rejoined in 1917) no other university has left the conference AND kept their varsity athletics. None. Zero. Nada. Why is that? Well, the glue that holds the B1G together comes in the form of something much stronger than merely an association of athletics. The conference's higher commitment to academics and specifically research is what has bound it together and will bind it together going forward. These are instiutions of higher learning above all else and while yes, it's possible if the B1G gets to 18-20 members that some might splinter away. It isn't very plausible. What other collection of academic and athletic universities would want to leave that AND come to the conclusion that they would be better off as a university? I just don't see it.

1 year, 10 months ago on Don’t Like The Idea Of 20-Team Conferences? Don’t Worry, They Won’t Last Long

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 @JRsec  Disagree w/ you as to who the B1G invites. I see no situation in which they add Syracuse or Boston College. If they are gonna add non-AAU members like you suggest why wouldn't they go for the non-AAU's that are actually relevant? Specifically FSU.

1 year, 10 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)

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 @JRsec  @AllTideUp 1st the B10 has  to get to 16. And I think that that is a bit problematic for them. I think it's obvious to most that the B10 wants UVA and UNC. Problem is those schools will only leave the ACC if the ship is completely sinking. How and if we reach that point is the answer. If I had to guess I'd say the B10 tries to get GT and FSU. FSU will be a tough sell for Delany to the pipes that head up the B10. If those two came on board the ACC as a viable heavyweight conference would be kneecapped. At that point Clemson and Miami have to think about their football program's long-term viability in an ACC that is clearly a distant 5th from a football standpoint. If they decide to jump (and to me Clemson's only option is the B12....Miami as well w/ an outside, outside shot at the B10) then that would spell the complete death of the ACC.

 

So to answer your question about who would be 17 and 18....I'd say UVA and UNC. The ACC has to be irrevocably damaged for those two to leave. As for 19 and 20 if the B10 ever thought to go that high. You're looking at IMO Notre Dame and either Duke, Miami, Pitt, Kansas or if ND dictates they need a certain schoool like BC to be #20 in order for them to join.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @John at MrSEC  @Roggespierre  @BonzaiB  @mowens75 Agreed. Only way BC gets a seat at the B10 table is if Notre Dame says they have to be included in order for them to join as well.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @JRsec  @AllTideUp If the B10 thought that BC, Syracuse or UConn made sense they would have added them by now. As it is the B10 is not at risk of "losing" either of the 3 to the B12 or the SEC. And the only way either of those 3 get a spot is if the conference is stuck on 19 and needs another school AND ND desires BC's inclusion. I see no situation in which UConn and Syracuse will ever be in the B10. The B10 has done their due diligence on both and have deemed them lacking.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @JRsec  @mowens75 I agree content matters and you'd be correct if (and this is a monstrous if) the B10 added BC, UCONN, Syracuse and/or Kansas. None of those would be smart additions IMO. That's why if the B10 is adding some combination of: UVA, UNC, Duke, GT, FSU, ND it would be a no brainer for them. One other thing...yes, the SEC is the dominant conference as of right now, but it's because 3 programs are carrying all the load: Alabama, LSU and Florida. Sure Georgia is solid, but it's not a world beater. The rest of the schools are just filler for those 3 to feast on.

 

The issue w/ the B10 not being able to compete w/ the SEC for national titles is that during this 7 year run by the SEC only Ohio St. is putting up much of a fight nationally speaking. The other "king" programs in the B10 (specifically Michigan and Penn St.) need to start pulling their weight for the conference to become competitive nationally.

 

One other thing in regards to markets/matchups. The other reason the B10 is so successful from a media rights $ perspective is the sheer number of B10 alumni that want that content. I'm an IU fan and our football team is dreadful. Arguably one of the worst BCS programs, but I'll still watch and root for them wherever and whenever they're on tv. Take the avg. B10 school's enrollment...say 35k-40K and you start racking up staggering alumni figures pretty quickly.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @JRsec  @mowens75 @JRSEC---you honestly believe that the B10/News Corp. is unaware/unprepared for how college sports content is going to be delivered in the future to their consumers? Really? The 2nd largest media entity on the globe doesn't in fact know it's own business? The oldest and in a myriad of metrics most successful conference is all of a sudden going to falter by expanding it's membership to such a degree so as to render that expansion moot because they were caught unaware of media deliverablity? That all seems a touch implausible to me.

 

In the end no matter how this all shakes out I'm certain of 2 things and 2 things only. The SEC and the B10 will both be sitting pretty.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @mowens75 I agree adding 2 basketball bluebloods is enticing and would make for a nice slate of conference teams for the SEC: UK, UNC, Duke, Florida......sadly basketball is just a small moon that orbits the much larger football planet.

 

Oh, and I have to say you forgot one basketball blueblood on your list....IU. My Hoosiers' 5 national titles easily garner a seat at that table too.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @mowens75 Agree that the NC is important, but adding all 3 would seem to be financially dilutive for the SEC.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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I still don't understand how you can rationalize the SEC taking 2 teams or even 3 teams from N. Carolina. If the SEC is going to break the unwritten rule of "multiple schools from the same state" then they're most likely to break that rule w/  Florida St. and not the trio of UNC/Duke/NC State. The issue I keep coming back to (and one that would be in agreement to your multiple N. Carolina schools to the SEC) is that the SEC cannot take UNC w/out also taking NC State.

 

I see no circumstance where lawmakers in the Tarheel state allow NC State to go to an inferior conference. Both UNC/NC State must have upper echelon homes. The B12 is decidely not that. So, if the ACC gets picked apart the only viable home for the Wolfpack is the SEC. Because there is no way the B10 is inviting them.

 

Only plausible combinations for the 3 NC schools if the ACC disintegrates:

 

1. UNC/Duke/NC State to the SEC (Really difficult for me to see Duke going to the SEC though)

2. UNC/Duke to the B10 and NC State to the SEC

3. UNC/NC State to the SEC and Duke to the B10

 

 

One thing is certain IMO....none of these schools will ever end up in the B12.

1 year, 10 months ago on With Expansion Talk Heating Up, Here Are Four “Best-Case” Scenarios For The SEC

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 @mowens75  @JRsec  @Roggespierre  @AllTideUp 18 is as bad as 14 scheduling wise. No the B10 is going to 16 or 20 w/ 4 pods of 4 or 4 pods of 5. I see no scenario where conferences have 3 divisions. Just my opinion obviously. Also, I see virtually no scenario where the B10 adds Syracuse and UConn. The only northeastern school left that I could see them adding is Boston College. And that is only if Notre Dame insisted that they be #20.

 

Who knows how this plays out, but it's fun as hell to theorize about it.

1 year, 11 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)

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 @JRsec  @JansonRoberts I've read them all. I disagree w/ the idea that the SEC would be willing to take 2 N. Carolina schools let alone all three. Entirely too financially dilutive IMO.

1 year, 11 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)

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 @JansonRoberts  Assuming the ACC implodes (large assumption) to me the question all comes down to NC State. If I'm not mistaken UNC and NC State have the same BOT's/regents. IF the ACC goes down they will want viable "long term" homes for both schools. Compared to the SEC and the B10 the B12 can in no way be characterized as a viable long-term option. Below are the only possible outcomes assuming the following:

 

A) The B10 will under no circumstances take NC State (99.9% chance) 

B) Duke wants nothing to do w/ the SEC (highly likely)

C) The SEC is unwilling to take multiple schools from the same state (judging by the SEC's reluctance to double up w/ the likes of Clemson and FSU that seems to be the case).

D) UNC and Duke will not go to the B12 under any circumstance

 

This then leaves only one outcome for the N. Carolina schools (assuming those trustees don't view B12 as a viable long-term home for NC State):

 

1. UNC/Duke to the B10 & NC State to the SEC

 

If they do happen to view the B12 as a viable long term home you still are only left w/  2 alternatives:

 

1. UNC/Duke to the B10, NC State to the SEC

2. UNC to the SEC, Duke to the B10, NC State to the B12

 

 

 

Again, all of the above is under the assumption that the ACC completely dissolves.

 

 

1 year, 11 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)

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 @John at MrSEC  John- In regards to your PAC12 comments. Short of the PAC revisiting the Texas/Oklahoma angle of a couple years ago (highly unlikely IMO) I find it almost impossible for them to expand. First and foremost all the schools you list would be financial dilutive to the existing conference members. All the PAC would be doing is adding more mouths to feed. Not to mention I can't imagine Cal and Stanford wanting much to do w/ those schools from an academic standpoint.

 

 

1 year, 11 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)

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Absolute beatdown last night. And yes, whoever was the opponent probably wouldn't have mattered. Might have dressed up the pig a little better though. Everyone talks about oversigning and the SEC. I thought I'd look into the last 7 SEC teams that have won the BCS. Starting w/ Florida and count how many players they signed for the 4 classes that made up that year's title team vs. the team they played in the championship game.

 

The results are not all that surprising....

 

2006 Florida (21, 28, 24, 18) 91      Ohio St. (20, 18, 26, 15) 79       SEC +12

2007 LSU (27, 29, 13, 25) 94           Ohio St. (15, 20, 18, 26) 79       SEC +15

2008 Florida (22, 18, 27, 27) 94      Oklahoma (21, 20, 28, 26) 95   SEC -1

2009 Ala.  (23, 30, 24, 32) 109         Texas (20, 20, 25, 25)  90         SEC +19

2010 Auburn (30, 28, 27, 32) 117    Oregon (23, 26, 20, 29) 98       SEC +19

2011 Ala.  (32, 27, 29, 22) 110         LSU (23, 28, 24, 26)  101           Bama +9

2012 Ala.  (27, 29, 22, 26) 104         ND (17, 23, 23, 18) 81               SEC +23

 

Laying this out isn't to make excuses for other conferences losses or delegitimize this SEC run. Only to lay out the facts in helping to PARTIALLY explain said run. The benefits of oversigning have been discussed ad nauseum, but to see the actual disparity between the championship teams over this period is pretty stark IMO.

 

 

 

Note: The above numbers came from Scout's final team recruiting rankings.

1 year, 11 months ago on No. 1 Alabama Joined By Six Other SEC Teams In Top 25

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I agree with you that the Colts are 2-3 years away from realistically forming a team that can compete for a title. And let's assume for argument's sake that PM is fully healed. The question then is would you rather have Peyton at age 38-39 for the 2013-2014 season or Andrew Luck at 24-25 just entering his prime? Even allowing for the fact that Luck isn't a sure thing, I'd much rather go with the calculated gamble and take my chances with Luck. If the Colts cut Manning they aren't trying to diminish what he has meant to the franchise or the city.

 

All the Colts are essentially saying is, "we're willing to bet on Luck being a really good replacement for the next decade or longer v. bringing Manning back for what would be at best 3-4 years." Nobody really likes it per se, but this is the epitome of "it's just business".

 

Also, has anyone ever thought "what if Luck actually lives up to the hype?" Look at the Packers for instance. Favre was a god to that town in every bit the way PM is to Indy. When the Packers brass thought it was time to move on there was similar outrage from segments of the fan base that thought just like Colts' fans do now. Rodgers just now completed his 4th year and I'm willing to bet 99.9% of Packers fans have no regrets from moving on from the Favre era. Granted the Packers have a much longer and vibrant history pre-Favre than the Colts do (in Indy) pre-Manning, but if Luck is legit the vast majority of the Colt fan base will react much like Packers. And the PM hangover would be short lived.

 

All endings suck....not exactly breaking news.

2 years, 9 months ago on The Mythology of Manning | March

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He said "the Colts need a couple of players and some new defensive coaching." Now a couple of new players to me means 2 maybe 3. Not the wholesale changes the Texans/Jaguars made which Nate used as examples. Maybe I'm misinterpreting what he was implying. But it came across to me as if this would be a relatively easy undertaking.

The elite core of the team is all over the age of 31. Mathis, Freeney, Wayne, Clark, Peyton etc...and the guys coming up behind them aren't all that impressive. I think that's where people come down harshly on the Colts' FO. By and large their drafts from 2006 or so onwards have been fairly shoddy.

Combine that with the history of the Colts' front office being loath to spend money on "quality" free agents I don't see how you can overhaul an entire side of the ball in one offseason.

@kasey_junk

3 years, 1 month ago on Wednesday Open Thread

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Nate,

Your Jacksonville and Houston examples are pretty weak. The reason the Jaguars defense has gone from 32nd to 6th is because this offseason they spent a helluva lot of money on free agents:

LB Paul Posluszny

LB Clint Session

S Dawan Landry

CB Drew Coleman

I tend to think replacing 35% of your starting defense has a tad bit more to do with it than simply shuffling schemes/coaches.

Houston Texans:

S Danieal Manning

CB Johnathan Joseph

DE JJ Watt (draft)

LB Brooks Reed (draft)

Sure, hiring Wade Phillips as def. coordinator helps things on the margins. I'm not going to go down the list of the other teams you list, but teams sliding up and down the offensive/defensive ranks has much more to do with personnel than anything else.

Bottom line is those 2 teams got significantly better on the defensive side of the ball because.....wait for it......they vastly improved their defensive personnel by investing heavily in both the draft and free agency.

3 years, 1 month ago on Wednesday Open Thread

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