Will SEC Championship Game Change with Deregulation?

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Will SEC Championship Game Change with Deregulation?


[su_spacer size=”20″] Current NCAA rules state that a conference must have 12 members (minimum) and those members must be divided into 2 divisions of, at least, 6 members each for the conference to hold a championship game. There is a proposal before NCAA to deregulate championship games by allowing conferences to decide for themselves the qualifications for their game.
[su_spacer size=”40″] Both the Big 12 and the ACC support deregulation. Big 12 schools want to change because the conference has only 10 schools. The ACC simply wants to put their best 2 teams in the championship game regardless of division. The SEC currently opposes changing the championship game format. SEC’s stance is unsurprising given the success of the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta.
[su_spacer size=”40″] [su_quote style=”modern-light” cite=”NOLA.com” url=”http://www.nola.com/lsu/index.ssf/2015/05/the_sec_doesnt_need_to_play_it.html”] There are some conferences, like the mighty SEC, that believe it doesn’t need de-regulation.
[su_spacer size=”10″] After all, the SEC was the first conference to create a football championship game in 1992, when the then-12-team league began matching the Eastern and Western Division champions.
[su_spacer size=”10″] The SEC’s consistent argument against any change in its championship game format or in the number of league games played annually, is the conference doesn’t need any strength of schedule help. The league is annually so strong with six to eight ranked teams that it can survive years like last season’s imbalanced conference championship game between division champs No. 1 ranked Alabama and No. 16 Missouri.
[/su_quote] [su_spacer size=”40″] If the two highest ranked teams has played in the Championship Game rather than the division winners, how would history have been altered.
[su_spacer size=”40″] [su_quote style=”modern-light” cite=”NOLA.com” url=”http://www.nola.com/lsu/index.ssf/2015/05/the_sec_doesnt_need_to_play_it.html”] There are some conferences, like the mighty SEC, that believe it doesn’t need de-regulation.
[su_spacer size=”10″] Twelve of those last 17 SEC title games would have had different matchups. Alabama would have had a chance to play for four more league championships, and Florida and Georgia two each.
[su_spacer size=”10″] Even LSU’s 2006 team, which was tied for second in the Western Division yet beat Western Division champ Arkansas, would have played in the SEC title game against No. 4 Florida instead of the No. 8 Razorbacks, who were 7-1 in league play with one fewer SEC loss than the 6-2 Tigers. Why? LSU was ranked No. 5 in the BCS standings.
[su_spacer size=”10″] In men and women’s basketball and in baseball, records in conference play determine seeding in those sports SEC tournaments. It’s about time football did the same to choose the two best teams to play for all the marbles.
[/su_quote] [su_spacer size=”40″] Is the SEC Championship Game a case of if-it-ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it or should the confernce assure that it’s highest ranked teams vie for the championship?

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Greg is closing in on 11 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.