The SEC has a decision to make — Is more expansion the right thing for the conference?

·2 min read
Several ACC schools make a lot of geographical sense if Greg Sankey and the SEC's endgame is a super league.
Several ACC schools make a lot of geographical sense if Greg Sankey and the SEC's endgame is a super league.

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The SEC will add Oklahoma and Texas at some time before the 2025 season. That won't change with the current round of college sports' realignment.

But the status quo is changing. The Big Ten has added UCLA and USC. The ACC, Big 12 and PAC-12 are all trying to anticipate what is next regarding realignment. Which large, name-brand school is next to change affiliations? What's Notre Dame's future like?

The SEC could add a number of schools. Several ACC schools make a lot of geographical sense (though that apparently is less of a factor than in the past) if Greg Sankey and the SEC's endgame is a super league. What is a super league, anyway? 20 teams? 24 teams? 30 teams?

One thing is safe to assume: Current SEC schools will not be thrilled to cut too far into their splits of revenue divvied up by the league. As long as the money makes sense, so will expansion to schools and their administrators.

The league has a lot to examine. How far west is too far west? The league identifies so strongly with the southern U.S. that to add a PAC-12 school such as Oregon or Arizona State may be nonsensical. Could you imagine a TrueSouth episode in Eugene, Oregon on the SEC Network?

Adam Sparks, the Knoxville News-Sentinel's Vols beat writer, wrote earlier in this space about the increasing difficulty to win for everyone in the league with big-name expansion. He also talked about the "why" of expansion: money and survival.

The SEC is going to survive and thrive financially through this round of expansion. It doesn't need to add more teams to do that.

Notre Dame aside, there are few teams that make sense for the SEC. Clemson, UNC, Florida State and Miami would add to the league's depth in football and other sports. If college sports realignment becomes a two-horse race between the SEC and Big Ten, those four schools would be among the top of each conference's list.

But does the SEC need any of the four schools? No.

And if the Big Ten does add more schools, great for the Big Ten. It wouldn't change which conference leads the way in college football. It'll still be the SEC.

This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Is more expansion the right thing for the SEC?