SEC Expansion: SEC presidents ponder Alabama-Auburn and Ole Miss-Miss State during talks?

REPORT: 11 of 12 SEC presidents to hold secret talks on SEC expansion, Texas A&M

SEC presidents will huddle at a secret location to discuss SEC expansion, Pete Thamel of the New York Times reported. The Sunday meeting will consider admission of Texas A&M to the SEC. Thamel’s report details how the renewed flirtation with the Aggies began. (So check out the story.) But there was one important point to the story: who could become the fourteenth member of the SEC.

“The SEC official said he wondered if the SEC presidents would vote for A&M only if they were assured that a team from within one of their states — Florida State, Clemson or Georgia Tech, for example — would not be added,” Thamel reported.

This is a clear statement that other SEC schools see a threat in allowing an instate rivalry to develop within the conference. Georgia Tech seems an absurd name to mention at this point; the Yellowjackets ran from the SEC and it is doubtful anyone in the conference would welcome them back. However, Clemson and Florida State continue to surface in expansion chatter.

Florida and South Carolina are wise to consider the lesson from Alabama. The state is Balkanized. The state seethes in football antagonism 365 days. Talk radio is filled with Alabama and Auburn trash talk, hatred and accusations of cheating.

The situation in Mississippi is intense. Not as wacko as the present situation in Alabama—where a school under active and major NCAA investigation is trying to divert attention from the investigation by attempting to smear Alabama over the sartorial excellence of football players—but the Ole Miss and Mississippi State rivalry is gritty. It is far more intense than many rivalries because fans are in such close proximity. You can’t escape your rival. They are at the grocery store. They are even at church waiting to taunt instead of share the love of Christ.

Florida and South Carolina already battle Florida State and Clemson in recruiting. They have their share of tussles too.

But it isn’t the same.

Yet.

Could these rivalries develop into even more intense versions if these teams were allowed to join the SEC?

It would certainly weaken the standing of Florida and South Carolina. One of the best selling points for these schools is the exclusive chance to play in the SEC and stay within the confines of their respective states. SEC expansion would end that exclusivity. It might not be a major hit, but that must be seen as a hit.

But the larger issue is how fans could respond. Would they ratchet up the intensity like in Alabama or Mississippi? Would fans begin collecting dossiers on rivals like Auburn fans did on Gadsden High School students complete with photographs of Dodge Chargers and Carfax reports?

Why take the chance?

18 Comments

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  1. 1
    Rogue Elephant

    I fail to see the problem here.
    FSU & FL already have an intense rivalry and recruit against each other anyway.
    Same with Clemson & SC.
    Look at it this way, even if Auburn was in another conference, as long as they played us every year, AU’s lousiest fans would still be barners and Bama would still have to put up with their crap.
    Expansion seems inevitable.
    May as well get the best you can, while you can.
    Heard Slive said the other day that he could add some teams in 15 minutes.
    Probably talking about Troy, UAB, and other teams like them.
    I, for one, would prefer to do better.
    Can’t have a super conference without super teams.
    Bring in Tx A&M and OK in the west.
    Add FSU and Clemson or Va Tech in the east.
    RTR!!!!!!!

  2. 2
    RC

    The SEC rivalry makes the Iron Bowl nastier without a doubt. I can definitely see Clemson fans acting as immature as Auburn fans because both Universities are similar in regards to culture. I don’t think Florida State would be as bad as Auburn though. I still think we need to add somebody regionally like Miami OR Ga Tech if we extend invites to Missouri

  3. 3
    jason

    How about that intense rivalry between Vanderbilt and it’s in state rivalTennessee? Certainly a nasty one there….geeze. The cross state rivalry between UGA and Florida definitely ranks up there in intensity, so why isn’t this being discussed? How about UGA/Auburn or UA/Tennessee? Intense rivalries is what makes the SEC the SEC. If fans don’t want that, then they can move out west to be fans in the PAC.

  4. 4
    RC

    You’re missing the point, Jason. Vandy-UT? Seriously?! Fact is, the SEC rivalry makes it more intense. You’ll always have the crybaby little brothers in-state like Auburn and maybe Clemson. It’s just part of their culture

    • 5
      Rogue Elephant

      I think jason’s point was that some in-state rivalries are BS and some rivalries across state lines are pretty intense in their own right.
      Just sayin’.

      • 6
        capstonereport

        And it is a good point. As far as it goes.

        USC-Notre Dame is intense.

        But is it anything like Alabama-Auburn and Ole Miss-Miss State for the nastiness fans endure?

        As for Vandy and Tennessee….

        would Tennessee fans even know where Vanderbilt is located if not for the SEC?

  5. 7
    AUGuy1980

    Smear the bammers? And what would a pile of “bear” turds know about culture? TEvery Alabamian knows that west Alabama is really just east Mississippi in disguise, Losers………………..j

  6. 10
    Allen Times

    HAHA! Can’t write an article without bringing up your big brother Auburn into the discussion. Amazing how you think that Auburn is the one that is the problem but keep drinking the kool-aid. I really don’t think that Auburn fans or players are the ones that talked your idiot players into going to T-Town and getting free clothes for signatures. And free super at the local spots. If you say they didn’t your an idiot. You know it, I know it, and the NCAA will be soon telling you that they know it.
    Now, you can go off about Cam……..like always…..that’s fine. If that’s still killing you, which obviously it is by how much you talk about it still, then go ahead and tell yourself that we paid him and the NCAA is going to get us….go ahead….we’re waiting.
    WAR DAMN EAGLE

    • 11
      capstonereport

      I continue to mention it because it pisses you off.

      Does that make me a bad person?

      Maybe.

      I just like pointing out the NCAA continues to probe Auburn’s cheating–cheating that includes allegations reported by HBO with four former Auburn players admitting they were paid.

      Ouch. That has to hurt.

      • 12
        Allen Times

        Silly bammer. Do you really think that it “hurts” me that you really think something is going to come of all this Cam crap. Ahhhh, your funny. The truth is…..the only reason you can’t keep Auburn out of your mind is because you are obsessed with Auburn. You, like this web site, are a joke. That is why I love reading this site. It is always good for a laugh. Plus, I get the added bonus of being able to hear about Auburn everyday. So keep telling yourself that you just write about Auburn to get us mad and maybe one day you will become relevant. Doubt it but maybe.
        War Eagle!

  7. 13
    RC

    Allen:

    Victories over poor Alabama teams does not make Auburn big anything. Alabama’s record during the tainted streak was 43-33 overall which included a 3-3 mark against weak TN teams, 1-5 against LSU, 3-3 against Arky, 1-1 against LA Monroe, 3-3 against MState…Congrats on beating a 3-loss team by
    1-point last year, though. Y’all did at least beat a
    decent team…Alabama has and always will be big brother to Auburn and their cultish hick fanbase…NOTHING will come from T-Town for 2 reasons: 1) NCAA is aware of on-line smear campaigns against the innocent 2) NCAA WILL NOT MESS WITH NICK SABAN. Before your deluded Auburn as- brings up textbooks again, that occurred during Shula’s watch and only a short time under Saban

    you are the typical white-trash Auburn fan. No integrity. You probably wipe your butt on the Auburn Creed like your fellow alumni

    • 14
      Allen Times

      You’re funny too! Wow, I know you loved typing that La Monroe record. Too good…Too good. Anyways, you and your buddies just keep telling yourself that the NCAA wont mess with Nicky, just remember, he cant spank the NCAA investigators, only the boys who play for him….or play with him, whichever. Ahhhh, you guys sound like that sorry azz president we have, Barack, He blames everything on Bush, ya’ll blame everything on Shula.
      And did you really say that Auburn fans have no integrety?
      Really? You do read the articles and comments on this site don’t you? Apparently not.
      Anyways, good luck with the upcoming season. Not wishing you win your games but do hope all your players stay healthy.
      War Eagle

      • 15
        BamaBrando

        After all the ruckus you guys caused over the menswear, nothing has happened. No investigation, no violations. Can’t blame you guys for trying since we have be pointing and laughing at all the cheating ways and investigations going on with Auburn. Several of you cult members have been here swearing retaliation, and y’all did it! But, just like Auburns season this year, you guys fall short. You are still under investigation, which should be wrapping up here in the near future. After a years worth of digging, it is going to be interesting on what they have dug up on y’all.

        By the way, Bama won’t need the luck this season like Auburn will. Y’all relied on that way too much last year. It won’t happen again this season. That first loss is going to sting so much, and then you get to look forward to the Bama beating coming your way at the end. Hope your guys are healthy, so there will be no excuse. Y’all will be lucky to beat Utah St.

        • 16
          Allen Times

          I agree that Auburn will need a bunch of luck and did have a bunch of luck last year. God yes! I absolutely agree. But our first loss will not sting as nearly as bad as bamas did last year. You guys were truly expecting the repeat and didn’t come close. I don’t expect our team too repeat. Too little experience. I expect a lot out of our team but I also am a realist.
          One last thing……I know you are just trying to make me upset or something but to say that we will be lucky to beat Utah St. makes you look ignorant. But then again you were lucky to beat Louisiana Monroe a few years back with Nick Saban at the helm. Ohhhhhhhh….wait…..oops sorry. Forgot. Ouch, that game really has to hurt even now.

          • 17
            BamaBrando

            Well, Utah State gave Oklahoma all they wanted last season (31-24) , and they have 19 starters coming back. I doubt they will be overlooking Auburn or view them as a can’t win game. But I stand by what I said. Auburn will be lucky to beat Utah St. and pretty much any SEC team they play. Good luck getting bowl eligible.

            La Monroe?….. Yep, Bama lost that game, and Saban used it as motivation for the next season, when Bama capped off an undefeated regular season by beating Auburn 36-0. Guess which game Saban is using to motivate the team this year? No one has beaten Saban two years in a row yet, not Florida with Tebow, and Auburn won’t do it this year, even if you had Cam coming back.

  8. 18
    RC

    Allen,

    Maybe Cecil can contact Barack to keep him out of jail on money laundering charged. Too bad selling his son into slavery is not a crime. Or is it?

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