Why Texas has to listen to the SEC

When the history of college football is written, June 10-11, 2010 will be remembered as two very important days. Today, in fact, could end up being one of the most significant days in the history of the sport. Here is where I think we are this morning:

1. The Pac-16 deal is not done yet. Colorado has left for the Pac-10 (a good move). Nebraska should announce today that it is leaving for the Big Ten (another good move for Nebraska but not for the Big 12). There have been various reports that if those two things happened, five other current members of the Big 12 (Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State) would leave to go to the Pac-10. That deal is not done yet because….

2. Texas must listen to what the SEC has to say: Texas and Texas A&M officials met on Thursday in a attempt to salvage the Big 12. They didn’t find a way. That could certainly still be done by bringing on TCU and another worthy school. But I talked to several people last night who said there is a rift developing between Texas and Texas A&M over where to go if the Big 12 breaks up. Texas A&M athletics director Bill Byrne wants to listen to the SEC. Former Alabama coach Gene Stallings, who lives in the area, is a member of the Texas A&M Board of Regents and tells Byrne that the SEC will be a much better fit for the Aggies. Would the political class  in Austin allow the Longhorns and the Aggies to go in different directions?

Sorry, Baylor. You had better hope that the Big 12 stays together. By inviting Colorado seperately, the Pac-10 has effectively squeezed the Bears out of this process.

3. There is a potential deal breaker out there for Texas and the Pac-10: Texas athletics director DeLoss Dodds has long talked about setting up the Longhorns’ own television network for those events not covered by the bigger network packages. The Pac-10 financial model, which will look like the Big Ten’s, would not allow for that. The SEC will point out that in their league, schools are allowed to have their own networks and to keep the money they make. The Pac-10 could make some financial concessions to Texas to take this into account.

4. The SEC will not feel threatened by a Pac-16: Even if Texas comes on board and the other Big 12 schools follow to form the Pac-16, the SEC will not feel compelled to expand. But if the Big Ten, which is expected to add Nebraska today, goes to 16 then the SEC will have some very tough decisions to make. A report by Teddy Greenstein in the Chicago Tribune said that the Big Ten could potentially double the money earned from its TV deals and Big Ten network if the right five teams are brought into the league. So if you’re an SEC fan, keep your eye on the Big Ten. Also if you’re an ACC fan, keep your eye on the Big Ten. Because if the SEC feels it HAS to expand and the Texas schools are not available, the ACC will become vulnerable.

5. The Big Ten could have one last card to play with Notre Dame: It goes something like this. Nebraska comes on board to expand the footprint to the West. Then the Big Ten raids the Big East for Syracuse, Rutgers, and Pittsburgh to lock up some Eastern markets. There is one slot left to form the Big 16. Notre Dame can fill that slot but the Irish brass has to ask for it. Notre Dame will understand that if it shows no interest, the slot goes to Missouri. How would you like to be Missouri and have to sweat that one out? A couple of weeks ago it looked like Missouri was a lock for the Big Ten.

One bonus thought: Almost lost in the shuffle of these events is the fact that the USC football program was almost put out of business yesterday. The loss of 30 scholarships over three years, with a cap of only 15 a year, is huge. The NCAA wanted to send a message. And it did. And of course all the parties involved–Pete Carroll, Reggie Bush–are shocked, SHOCKED, that these sort of penalties could be handed down.

The NCAA didn’t give USC the death penalty, but it was close.

And by the way: After what happened yesterday with the football and men’s basketball programs at USC, how in the world does athletics director Mike Garrett keep his job?

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988 comments Add your comment


June 13th, 2010
6:58 pm

Granted, some schools in the SEC have sacrificed their lamb to be in the SEC. Nobody will lower standards but will be more than glad to make a lateral move.

Delbert D.

June 13th, 2010
7:00 pm

Atlanta Gator -
“It is not advisable, James, to venture unsolicited opinions. You should spare yourself the embarrassing discovery of the exact value to your listener.”


Delbert D.

June 13th, 2010
7:06 pm

Yeppie – Actually, most sprung from the very old Southern Conference. Georgia Tech and Tulane left when there were more than lambs being led to the slaughter through the athletic scholarship practices of a minority of the schools.


June 13th, 2010
7:08 pm

Seems like Florida, has a solid academic and a great football program. Florida has to pull the SEC with them… Florida has the best football program and best academics rated among SEC schools. I find that interestiing.. Just having fun with you guys… My Horns lost in the super regional in Baseball to TCU.. TCU has two good pitchers. Okay on defense but good pitching staff. Just an fyi…


June 13th, 2010
7:09 pm

You all have a wonderful evening.

Delbert D.

June 13th, 2010
7:17 pm

Yeppie – Next week ought to be *real* interesting. See ya.


June 13th, 2010
7:21 pm

Take care Delbert. Enjoyed blogging with you. Nice to blog with someone that makes statements backed up with facts or with solid rationale. Off to watch the Celtics and Lakers. Like anybody cares about the NBA.
Your right.. Next week will be interesting. Take care..

Atlanta Gator

June 13th, 2010
9:20 pm

Nice. My ”Ghostbusters” quote is answered with one from “Atlas Shrugged.”

Game, set and match. You win.

SC Rules!!!

June 13th, 2010
10:34 pm


Sorry but I have to disagree with you on his one. Texas DOESN’T need to listen too nor does it NEED the SEC. They will in fact take up with the PAC XVI for the 2012 season and the SEC will find that by the time “we” get out of time out they won’t be the “dawgs” of record anymore. Enjoy the “run” while we’re away. Hope y’all get a good laugh from the CRAP charges that y’all had the past four years to drum into the NCAA’s ear unrelentingly ’till they had no choice but to “believe that there was in fact fire for all the “smoke” y’all were blowin!

Now before any of y’all start puffin up about how “superior” y’all are, remember how many of y’all have been caught; HOW MANY TIMES?????

Fight On!

The Rational SEC Fan

June 13th, 2010
10:47 pm

SC Rules!!!

Put down the crack pipe and step away. Your favorite college just got hammered with the toughest NCAA sanctions since SMU’s football program received the “death penalty” in 1986. Can you say “lack of institutional control?” Thirty lost scholarships? Vacation of 14 wins, including the BCS title game? Likely vacation of the 2004 BCS championship and forfeiture of Reggie Bush’s Heisman Trophy when the NCAA appeals are exhausted?

Nobody’s buying what you’re selling. Go home.

Fight off. LOL


June 13th, 2010
10:48 pm

Yeppie, if the academic quality of your athletic conference plays such a huge role in research grant allotments, why are Washington State and Oregon State such pitiful schools?

I mean, they’ve been with the alongside the likes of Stanford and Berkeley since the Pac 8 days. Saying that grants are doled out according to where you play football shows that you don’t really know how grants get passed out.

I see Texas’ point. They want to be perceived by people as an institution that values higher education. Being in the Pac 10 will enable them to do that. For example, Georgia and Florida are becoming two of the best public universities in the country… yet they aren’t really mentioned in the same breath as Virginia, Michigan, Wisconsin, Texas, Cal, UCLA, etc. because they’re in the SEC.

Academics has some role to play. But reasons number 1 through 1 billion are the wheelbarrows full of cash they’ll make.


June 13th, 2010
10:55 pm

And speaking of money, it would behoove Texas to listen to what the SEC can offer. It’s widely known that the Longhorns want to start up their own TV network. It’s also widely known that the Pac 10 is doing this expansion in order to start their own TV network. At some point these ideas are going to clash.

Both conferences have a system that equally distributes conference media revenue (another reason that Texas may try and give the Big XII a shot at staying alive). However, the SEC would be the only conference able to allow Texas to start their own television network. Georgia made tons of money by signing a deal with ISP to broadcast UGA sporting events. That’s added on to the $17 million plus they received from conference earnings. Texas could make way more money in the SEC than it could in the Pac 10.

Yeppie, you’ve said some smart things on this blog, but I want to address this before you try and contradict it… athletics money is more important than academic money when it comes to conference expansion.


June 13th, 2010
10:56 pm

And there was also the “Idiot”.


June 13th, 2010
11:25 pm


June 13th, 2010
11:41 pm

The proof is in the pudding.The real reason Texas and OU wants no part of everyday SEC life.Look at the Last two National Championship games.Florida and Alabama almost served jail time over those beatings.

Simple Techster

June 13th, 2010
11:42 pm

Atlanta Gator, according to the USGS

The 5 largest states according to LAND area east of the Mississippi:

#1-Georgia #2-Michigan #3-Illinois #4-Wisconsin #5- Florida.

When you include water, Michigan has 96,810 sq miles,Florida has 65,758 sq miles, Wisconsin has 65,503 sq miles, GA has 59,441 sq miles, and Illinois has 57,918 while New York has 54,475.

The size of Georgia according to the USGS is 57,919 square miles.
Georgia was given the nickname “Empire State of the South” after the Civil War once cotton farming declined and the economy exploded with wholesale/retail trade, textiles, corn, pecans, peaches, and peanut, not because of its geographically dispersed towns.

Sorry, not trying to start anything, but your facts were incorrect.

Simple Techster

June 13th, 2010
11:52 pm

Wait a sec….
Mr. CFB is an industry….

Now, i’m an ACC fan….but the SEC has more money in the coffers than any other conference. Big 10 is second, and the Pac 10 is third. Other than USC(which just got decimated by NCAA sanctions), Oregon, and Stanford in the past few years under Harbaugh,none of the Pac 10 teams have been relevant as of late. I believe that the SEC could survive simply staying at 12 members, where i’m not so sure that the Big 10 and the Pac 10 could say the same thing.

As far as states with the best athletes, I believe it is a fact that Georgia and Ohio are not far behind Texas and California as far as top athletes available year in and year out.


June 14th, 2010
12:16 am

You know what would stick a thorn in the side of “academically minded” Texas? If we added A&M and then plucked VT, GT, Clemson, and FSU from the ACC.

Now before you pass this up… I’m not advocating it from a football stand point.

A&M is ranked the 22nd best public university in the US according to USNWR. Virginia Tech is #29, Georgia Tech is #7, Clemson is #22, and Florida State (surprisingly) is #48.

IF we added those schools, it would mean that after Berkeley and UCLA (the nation’s two best public institutions of higher learning) the SEC would have a school ranked better or equal to the remaining Pac 16 members.

GT #7 v. UW #11
UF #15 v. Texas #15
UGA #21 v. CU #34
Clemson #22 v. OU #48
A&M #22 v. ZONA #48
VT #29 v. WSU #52
Auburn #39 v. Oregon #57
Alabama #43 v. ASU #60
FSU #48 v. OSU Third Tier Toilet
UT #52 v. other OSU Third Tier Toilet
SC #55 v. TTU Third Tier Toilet
LSU #64, Arkansas #64, and Kentucky #64

Even without the ACC schools, the average SEC school is just as good, if not better than the average Pac 16 team. This isn’t about academics… its just another opportunity for people to try and call Southerners stupid.

Let’s add A&M then grab those four from the ACC so that the new Pac 16 can kiss our hind quarters in both athletics AND academics.

The Rational SEC Fan

June 14th, 2010
12:30 am

Simple Techster—-

Here’s a table from USGS showing the area of land and the area of water within each state:


The only way that Michigan gets to 96,810 square miles is by including approximately half of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron (approximately 40,000 square miles), which are not “inland lakes.” That having been said, Michigan does indeed claim ownership of and sovereignty over those Great Lake areas. If you include those slices of the Great Lakes, then Michigan is in deed the largest state east of the Mississippi, Florida is second, Wisconsin is third and Georgia is fourth.


As for the origin of Georgia’s sometime nickname, “Empire State of the South,” I found two on-line sources that referenced the geographic size of the state and two that referenced its economic development in the 19th Century. No exactly scientific, but that would seem to represent a split of authority on the origins of the nickname. One of those sources actually cited Georgia as the “Yankee State of the South” because of its economic development. Yikes.

Simple Techster

June 14th, 2010
12:32 am

But TDave….

If you take Texas A&M then GT, Clemson, Florida State, and VT, that takes you from the 12 schools the SEC has now and takes you to 17 schools. Shouldnt have an odd number of schools if you can help it, better if you keep it even. Havent heard anyone talk about a 17 or 18 member conference….so would you add one to get to 18, subtract one to fall back to 16, or did you really want 17?

CFB is an Industry

June 14th, 2010
2:23 am

Ok, let’s break this down for people

First off Atlanta Gator, if you’re going to include TT and Ok St in the list of bad school in the Pac 16 (even though they’re officially members yet), then you need to include UT on the good schools list, that’s just a matter of being fair. For this argument, I’ll leave all schools that haven’t officially moved out of their respective “new” leagues

Second, as someone with a purported graduate degree, you should’ve known that US News undergrad rankings are the wrong metric to use – graduate research dollars and donations drive the profitability of the major schools, and are a much better measuring stick

However, even if we use your undergrad rankings, the SEC falls short

Pac-11: Tier 1: Stan (4), Cal (21), UCLA (24), USC (26), Wash (42)
Tier 2: Colo (77), the 4 schools you mentioned
Tier 3: Oregon St.
SEC: Tier 1: Vandy (17), UF (47), UGa (58 – borderlone, some folks would consider this Tier 2)
Tier 2: Aub (88), Ala (96), Tenn (106), S.Car (110), UK, Ark, LSU (128 -the LAST spot on Tier 2, borderline Tier 3)
Tier 3: Miss/Miss St.

So almost HALF the Pac-11 is in the top 50, while if US News used its old cut line of top 125 for the first tier, the SEC would have 5 Tier 3 schools out of 12. You don’t see a difference there?

If you use the proper metric, research dollars, 6 of the PAC-11 schools pulled in over 500MM dollars in 2007 (the latest year I could get data on) – the 5 Tier 1’s and (surprise!) Arizona. In fact, 8 of the Pac 11 schools are either Tier 1 or 2 research schools.

Texas and A&M both pulled in over 400MM in 2007, only UF and Vandy (399MM) reached that level. In fact, the SEC only has 3 schools in the top 2 research tiers, UF, Vandy, and UGA. For a reference of comparison, the Big “10″ has 11, the ACC has 9, and the Pac-11 has 8.

So yeah, the SEC falls a little short in that regard.

The scary thing is that those numbers don’t even mention endowment funds (money at the university’s disposal). Like I mentioned before, Stanford has a larger endowment than all 12 SEC schools combined. So while the SEC offices may have lots of working capital, they can easily be outspent by any of these rich institutions at a moment’s notice (Techster).

Keep the SEC in the southeast

June 14th, 2010
5:26 am

Enter your comments here

Simple Techster

June 14th, 2010
5:35 am

I hear you, Mr. CFB is an industry….but if Stanford has this huge endowment, and i’m not trying to say that they dont…….then why dont they have a college football coach making 6 million a year and having them constantly in the top 10? Their last 4 coaches were Willingham(44-36-1), Teevens(10-23), Harris(6-17) and Harbaugh(current coach, current record is 17-19). Dont get me wrong, I enjoyed watching Stanford doing so well last year, I though they were going to beat Oklahoma in the Sun Bowl and i believe Harbaugh is doing a great job.

But, if Stanford has more money that the SEC combined, it looks like they arent willing to spend it on football. Sorry, but that seems pretty obvious to me. Just compare the records, lets say for the past decade, of Stanford versus Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Alabama, LSU, and even Georgia Tech, Clemson, FSU and Virginia Tech. Doesnt come close. If Stanfords endowment fund was applicable to football, then Stanford would have Urban Meyer or Nick Saban as their coach and the Pac 10 team with the dynasty in the past decade would be Stanford, not USC.

Simple Techster

June 14th, 2010
6:01 am

ESPN’s top 25 most prestigious programs(done in 2009)
SEC and ACC teams in CAPS
Teams being discussed in conference expansion rumors followed by ****
1).Oklahoma Sooners****
2).USC Trojans
3).Ohio State Buckeyes
4).Notre Dame Fighting Irish****
5).Nebraska Cornhuskers****(already moved to Big 10)
7).Texas Longhorns****
8).Michigan Wolverines
11).Penn State Nittany Lions
16).Ucla Bruins
17).Washington Huskies
19).Arkansas Razorbacks
20).Texas A&M Aggies****
23).Colorado Buffaloes****(already relocated to Pac 10)
25).BYU Cougars

Isnt it amazing how many historically high profile teams are involved in expansion? This is truly history.


June 14th, 2010
7:51 am

Last comment didn’t make it through for some reason.

1. If it was about academics, the Pac 10 would be inviting UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, UC Davis, and UC Irvine.

2. Until there are plans for a “Pac 16 Science Fair” or a “Pac 16 Creative Writing Competition” this remains about football money. Lots of football money.

Mike Silve

June 14th, 2010
9:04 am

BIG XII – you should remain quiet since no one cares what you have to say and will no longer exist in couple of weeks. Your conference is dead because everyone wants to be like the my conference – the SEC. We make money and win championships….BCS era – the SEC has 6 of the 12 championships. I think the Big 12 got 1 during that time…

Texas killed the SouthWest conference and now it has killed the BigXII. My conference needs to think about what and who should be added but it does not need Texas and we will be fine without them.

Nerds from the North Avenue Trade School – wake up – you suck, and your conference sucks, and your attendance and draw will eliminate you from coming to my conference – not that I would ever invite you willingly. My SEC will only ask you if it becomes desperate like the Big XII. Florida might not get a choice in turning down FSU and Miami if Texas, Oklahoma, and company go to the Pac-10. They will be looking to add more market share and we want to look in a place where we can add TV market share and viewers. That will not be Atlanta where you only sell out your games against my conference. Hell you don’t even travel to your teams conference championship game or the BCS bowl. More UGA fans went to Shreveport than the combined fans of your powerhouse school for both the conference championship and BCS. So you should leave the UGA boys alone.


June 14th, 2010
9:10 am

I would rather Texas and Texas A&M go to the “Pac 16″. when I think of the SEC I think of great football and dumb people. Back when Texas and A&M left the Southwest Conference they said the reason they did not go to the SEC was that the SEC academic standards were not up to par with Texas and A&M’s. Both Texas and Texs A&M are tier one schoold and the leaders in engineering and business. Many programs top ten in the country. UCLA, USC, Berkley top academic powerhouses.


June 14th, 2010
9:50 am

As far as academic rankings go, Texas would be tied for 2nd in the SEC, while A&M would be 5th.

1. Vandy 17
T2. Florida 47
T2. Texas 47
4. Georgia 58
5. Texas A&M 61

They are the highest ranked Big XII schools and rank behind a few SEC schools. So one could easily make the case that the SEC has better football (foregone conclusion) and better academics.


June 14th, 2010
11:10 am

You SEC homers are right you have won 4 straight national titles, and guess what? You still have to ask teams to join your league. I hope the SEC commissars are smarter than their fans and understands what is going on. No one cares about your football programs, they only care about you checks, and right now your checks are smaller than the weak Big 10. You just signed a new TV contract so you cannot get anymore money from there, but every team the Big 10 adds could increase each teams share. No one WANTS to join your conference except for teams that would dilute your conference. To see the comments here you would think the SEC could just show off their trophy case and schools would come running. Not going to happen.

Dawg Trainer

June 14th, 2010
11:31 am

Seems like the Dawg Trainer needs to train some posters other than Dawgs.

Here’s the bottom line. Joe the Average Fan doesn’t give a hemorrhoidal damn if Alabama/Florida/LSU/Georgia/Tennessee/Auburn is Tier 1, Tier 2, or Tier 38…as long as they win football games, life is peachy. Now the Dawg Trainer cares somewhat since he works at a university, and research dollars are the lifeblood of colleges/universities.

But athletically? NOBODY CARES. You find me 10 Georgia Bulldog fans and 10 Georgia Tech fans. If more than 3 KNEW what tier their institution/team they root for was on, I’ll give you a thousand bucks!


June 14th, 2010
11:51 am

Texas A & M will probably be SEC bound by mid week, if not tomorrow. That gives the opening to add Florida State, Miami or Clemson to the mix.


June 14th, 2010
11:53 am

Bruiser, The SEC just awarded each team $17.3 million. The PAC 10 gave almost $10m. Don’t forget a school MUST be invited to join a conference and don’t think for a moment schools have lined up asking to be considered. If bigger schools join the SEC, then more revenue.


June 14th, 2010
11:57 am

I would like to see Texas in the SEC. I used to live in Texas and I always thought the Longhorns and Sooners had a fairly easy road to the BCS games. Playing in the SEC will test the Horns week after week and if any team is capable of going through an SEC schedule undefeated then rightfully they should play for the title. Texas going to the PAC 10(16) will ensure them football supremacy for years to follow and Mack Brown will eventually get bored with having a undefeated regular season year after year only to get blasted by a SEC team. Man up Texas and come to where football is really played.


June 14th, 2010
3:01 pm

SEC should add:

TxA&M and Mizzou in West.
VaTech and WVU in East.

Each is a new market for the SEC. Each is in a state which has no current SEC team but borders at least one SEC state.

FSU, Miami, GT and Clemson are redundant (and UF will veto another Florida school). VaTech can easily play in another conference than UVA – since they did that for decades before joining ACC. All are competitive in football and basketball as well as other sports (e.g. TxA&M in track and field). All have solid, albeit not great, APR scores and all fit in with the rest of the SEC in terms of college rankings from US News (61, 71, 102 – only WVU is Tier 3 and schools like LSU, UK and Ark are at 128 (bottom of Tier 2)).

In the end, expansion is about money. And the SEC should only do so in a way to increase their profile. Adding major schools in Texas, Missouri, Virginia and West Virginia is the best way to do so (if they do anything) rather than creating redundant markets in Florida, Georgia and/or S. Carolina. N. Carloina (state) would be nice – but doubtful you can get UNC without Duke or NCSU and Wake and ECU are too small.


June 18th, 2010
3:01 pm

I don’t know if anyone will ever read this but I’ll post it antway.
You SEC fans really get me, I have to admire the way you stand up for your conference but really your top heavy with 2-3 great schools then 5-6 schools that any given year will stand up and be counted and 3 schools that just show up and put people in uniforms. Then when an ACC fan stands up for the ACC you ridicule them. I am an ACC fan first, last, and always, but also being a southerner I root for the SEC and would love nothing more than to se the two merge as a 32 team mega/super conference and demanding 3 or even 4 BCS slots. Hey guys after all the old Southern Conference spawned both the SEC and then the ACC so there is a connection for many schools in both conferences. The only schools that I can see leaving the ACC anytime soon would be VT, GT, or maybe Clemson. I wouldn’t bet on any of them to leave or even be asked. They wouldn’t want to leave to go and play UF, Bama, and UGA every year and not make the BCS. Why would the SEC ask them, if these were to join what is the likelihood of a school running the table and going undefeated? The real logical choices would be those second tier schools that put competitive teams on the field to up the SOS of in conference games, those teams like LSU, Auburn, and Arkansas who on any given year could jump up and slap down the bigger fish outside the conference or even in conference. You would need schools like Maryland, UVA, UNC, and Wake of the ACC or maybe Syracuse, which had a few glory years and in the right conference to help draw recruits could again, and maybe U Conn, up and coming in football and basketball speaks for itself, in the Big East, or Missouri and A&M in the Big 12?.

Kevin in Dallas

June 19th, 2010
10:23 pm

The SEC is pushing hard for Texas. There are boosters who are in favor of this. I expect Texas and Texas A&M to join by 2015 at the latest.

Hey Dog, Did You See the Size of that Chicken

June 22nd, 2010
3:15 pm

Texas is the biggest chicken in college football. Now they have their own conference, the BEVO 10. Bravo to the PAC 12 Commish for NOT allowing them to dictate terms. No conference championship in the BEVO 10. Still all they have to do is Beat Oklahoma. Between the two of them they have 2 Championships in the last 39 years.

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