Death of College Football as We Know It?

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The answer to that question is not as easy as it may seem to be at first glance.

Right now in 2011 we have the Big 12, Pac-12, Big Ten, SEC, ACC, Big East, Independents, Mountain West, Western Athletic Conference, Conference-USA, Mid-American Conference and Sun Belt Conference.

Let’s just look at the four All Time Big Boy Conferences; Pac-12, Big 12, Big 10 and SEC.

Way back in 1965 the Pac-12 was actually called the AAWU. You say what the heck was the AAWU? It was the Athletic Association of Western Universities. Well before the Pac-12 was the AAWU it was the PCC. Holy mackerel what was the PCC? It was the Pacific Coast Conference. And, along the way the Pac-12 was also called the Big Five, the Big Six, the Pac-8, the Pac-10 and finally this year the Pac-12. And guess what, NCAA football on the west coast has survived and thrived for almost a 100 years.

Now the Big 12 came into being in the mid 90’s. But before it was the Big 12 it was the Missouri Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MVIAA) and included Washington University in St. Louis and even Iowa among its member schools. Almost 60 years later it became the Big Eight and did not have any schools from Texas among its membership. Finally, when the Big 12 arrived on the scene is when the four Texas schools from the Southwestern Athletic Conference moved in with the original Big 8 members. Football seems to be doing quite well in Big 12 country despite the conference realignments.

What about the Big Ten? Hasn’t it been just a model of consistency? No matter how many schools 10, 11, 12, it is still the Big Ten. Well hold onto your hat. Back in the olden days the Big 10 was actually called the Western Conference and then the Big 9 and then the Big Ten and then the Big 9 and finally in about 1949 it took on its current Big Ten name, even though today it has 12 members. How has the Big Ten faired over the course of a 100+ years? Just take a look at the attendance numbers. They make NFL stadiums appear half empty in comparison. Seven of the Big Ten schools have stadium capacities in excess of 70,000 and three have seating capacities over 100,000 and have had no problem selling out games year after year after year.

That brings us to the vaunted SEC. The football conference of all football conferences. Do you think the SEC was always the SEC? Well, I guess you could say technically that the SEC has always been the SEC since its founding in 1932. A few schools, such as Georgia Tech, Tulane and University of the South, have come and gone over the years but the conference is pretty much the same. If anything, the conference has gotten better and better. The same really can’t be said for any other conference except for maybe the Big Ten. The SEC and Big Ten were the only football conferences to average more than 70,000 fans per game last year in 2010.

So what do we really care if TCU goes East. So what if Utah and Colorado go West. So what if Nebraska finally gets into the Bit Ten after trying for a 100 years. So what if Texas A&M looks ready to move to the SEC. And, so what if another dozen or more schools load up a u-haul and hit the road for parts unknown over the next couple of years.

So is this the death of college football as we know it? Not hardly!

The reality is that in 5 years no one will even remember or care that realignment even took place.

Do you know why?

Because they’re still playing FOOTBALL!