With Texas and Oklahoma’s potential move to the SEC, many have been wondering how divisions would work. There have been a few ideas, ranging from two eight-team divisions to four four-team pods.
Geographically, the conference staying in two divisions makes the most sense. With the Alabama-Mississippi border being the line down the middle, most major rivalries are protected.
Taking it one step further than just divisions, what would Texas’ SEC schedule look like?
Well, with nine conference games, it is easier than you think. Seven against the SEC West and two against the SEC East. Four games would be at home, with another four on the road. Of course, the Red River Showdown would remain at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.
Here is what a hypothetical schedule would look like if Texas were to move to the SEC. For nonconference purposes, the 2024 season has been selected.
Week 1 - Colorado State
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Texas and Colorado State agreed to open the 2024 season against each other back in 2019. It will be the first meeting between the two since 1975.
Week 2 - Michigan
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A Rose Bowl rematch nearly 20 years in the making, moving to the SEC should have zero effect on Texas' matchup with Michigan. Two of the three winningest programs in college football history will begin a home and home series in Austin.
Week 3 - UTSA
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This would be the second of five matchups over the course of the 2020s between Texas and UTSA. Beginning in 2022, the two schools will face each other every other year. All will be held at Darrel K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.
Week 4 - at Ole Miss
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Now, this is where it begins to get interesting. Going to Oxford, Mississippi to tailgate would be enough for the Texas fans. Ole Miss seems to bring its A game for big-name SEC opponents. With Alabama theoretically off Rebels' schedule every other year, the Longhorns could be their biggest home game of the season. I guess the game on the field would be fun, too.
Week 5 - South Carolina
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Of all the teams currently in the SEC, Texas has the fewest matchups against South Carolina. The Longhorns and Gamecocks have only squared off once in their history. Austin and Columbia are quite a distance apart, but it would create a fun matchup every few years.
Week 6 - at Arkansas
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Throw out the term old rivalry because Texas-Arkansas is back on a full-time basis. The two schools have lined up against each other 78 times throughout history, the Longhorns' sixth most-played opponent. Somewhere, the Southwest Conference is smiling. Fans will get a sneak preview of this matchup, with Texas traveling to Fayetteville for the first time since 2004 on Sept. 11.
Week 7 - Oklahoma (Dallas)
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Nothing is going to change here. The Red River Shootout will still be the Red River Shootout. The Cotton Bowl will still be split 50/50 in burnt orange and crimson. One of the best rivalries in college football.
Week 8 - BYE
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After seven games, a BYE would be needed.
Week 9 - at Florida
This is the type of game where from a matchup standpoint, joining the SEC is an absolute no-brainer. Traveling to the Swamp, one of the most iconic venues in football, would be a fun away trip for Texas fans.
Week 10 - Mississippi State
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Hope you enjoy cowbells. And pirates.
Week 11 - LSU
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With Alabama and Auburn jumping to the SEC East, LSU is the odd man out. A school already with no true rivals, Texas could become that secondary team right behind Texas A&M for Ed Orgeron's squad. Austin was rocking during the 2019 matchup, although the return trip never occurred. Playing each other yearly would turn into one of the most fun SEC games of the year.
Week 12 - at Missouri
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Another old opponent is back on the schedule. Texas might be happy to see this game but Missouri -- not so much. According to a report, the Tigers are already one of two teams attempting to vote against the Longhorns joining the conference. If it goes through against their wishes, bi-annual trips to Columbia, Missouri, are back on the docket.
Week 13 - Texas A&M (Thanksgiving)
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Staying on the 2024 season theme, it would have been 13 years since Texas and Texas A&M have played each other. All it took to get the rivalry back was joining the SEC nearly a decade later. Everyone can have their Thanksgiving hostility back in the household.