The SEC Meetings kicked off Monday in Florida and the main topic on everyone’s mind is obvious: ESPN’s money.
The conference is looking at how their football schedule will look in a few years when Texas and Oklahoma join, with proposed eight and nine game schedules on the table. The kicker with that ninth game? Some schools want additional revenue from ESPN to cover it.
Under consideration is a one-year, temporary eight-game conference schedule in 2024 that will, at least for one year, preserve both primary and secondary rivalries.
Why eight? Capilouto’s concerns are echoed by many in the league. What’s the impact of a ninth league game on an athlete’s health? And how will the selection process play out in an expanded CFP?
But a third question has lingered and gone mostly unanswered for a year now: the extra money from ESPN, which is not contractually required to provide more money for a ninth game.
Mizzou has been vocal about its support for an additional conference game, no matter the cost, joining conference mates Texas A&M, Florida and Tennessee. Greg Sankey is on their side. But they’ve got at least powerful enemy: Nick Saban.
In a twist, coach Nick Saban aligned behind the eight-game model this spring in an interview with Sports Illustrated, while bemoaning Alabama’s earmarked rivals (Auburn, LSU and Tennessee) in the nine-game model.
For years, Saban had stated his support for nine conference games.
I guess ‘Bama is scared of that extra conference game? Can’t schedule an additional cupcake in-state school? That’s a shame!
We should find out later this week what the decision is, even though Sankey has not guaranteed a final decision will be made this week.
Anyway, look at the new guys trying to fit in, how cute
A couple new flags at the SEC spring meetings hotel. pic.twitter.com/xOXawFUwJq— Michael Casagrande (@ByCasagrande) May 29, 2023
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