The college football merry-go-round has apparently stopped for the time being. Texas A&M found a seat with the SEC, and Pitt and Syracuse got cozy with the ACC. Meanwhile, Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech ran into a “You Must Be This West to Ride this Ride” sign while flirting with the Pac-12; leaving them trying to repair their relationships with their other Big-12 (9) mates. But, before this ride is closed, it might be time for the SEC to buy one-more ticket and take another go-around. There is no doubt that Texas and Oklahoma are, by far, the prettiest girls at this carnival. While Oklahoma State is Oklahoma’s hot little sister who has to go with her wherever she goes. The SEC needs to court all three.
In today’s race for ratings and TV revenue, there would be no conference in America that could compare to a SEC adding Texas, OU, and Oklahoma State. In the current AP poll, this revised SEC would boast 4 out of the top 5 teams, and 9 out of the top 25. And since Texas was the last non-SEC team to win the BCS, that would run the current streak of BCS champions to six.
Texas A&M bolted from the Big-12 (9) recently because of a perceived unfair advantage that Texas’ new Longhorn Network gave the ‘Horns, but Texas has since offered to negotiate a remedy to that problem. If they were willing to do the same in the SEC, it could do nothing but help the SEC which is already affiliated with ESPN, the backers of the Longhorn Network. The Texas-A&M rivalry that the two schools are worried about losing could continue in the SEC unabated, not to mention the Bedlam series between Oklahoma and OSU.
The current possible candidates for future expansion that have been rumored like Missouri, West Virginia, Virginia Tech, Clemson, and Florida State are all fine schools, but they can not hold a candle to what Texas and Oklahoma bring in tradition, prestige, and of course, money. Also, OSU is a program on the rise over the past decade, and can compete as well on the monetary front with generous donations by alumnus, billionaire T. Boone Pickens.
The move itself could be accommodated very easily by simply moving Alabama and Auburn to the SEC East. Of course, there would be some East-West rivalry issues that would need to be resolved, but that kind of situation is going to occur in any kind of expansion. The SEC Championship Game could rotate between the Georgia Dome, Superdome, and Cowboys Stadium in order to give the fans an equal chance to go to a championship game without having to travel across the entire southern corridor.
If the eventual goal is to get to 16 teams, like most pundits believe, then it only makes sense to put together the most attractive superconference possible. The Pac-12, in their short-sighted view, got caught admiring its new 12 team lineup and didn’t focus on the future. Now, the SEC needs to capitalize on the Pac-12’s mistake and grab Texas, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State before this opportunity passes them by.
So, SEC, it’s time to put on some nice new clothes, grab some candy and flowers, and go show Texas, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State how a Southern gentleman courts a lady. The reward could be a lifetime of blissful and fruitful memories.