All of this energy that’s been focused on the new alliance between the ACC, Big 10 and Pac 12 has been wasted energy.
Let’s be real here, there isn’t any kind of formalized agreement to do anything. Just a gentleman’s agreement between the three conferences to work together moving forward. Yeah, ask Texas A&M officials how that gentlemen’s agreement the SEC had for so long worked for them when it came to Texas being voted in.
Honestly, it’s much ado about nothing really. However, if it keeps the SEC and ESPN from bullying their way into getting everything they want regarding playoff expansion, I can say it will have been a rousing success.
Still though, nothing that warrants all this attention. Let’s focus that on something that really matters. Actual games. Actual rivalries.
For example, Clemson and Georgia. Two schools, located 75 miles apart, that used to be one of the more heated rivalries in the country, with an emphasis on “used to be.”
For you younger fans, you may not know it, but these two programs used to play every season. The schools played every season between 1967 and 1982, outside of two years (1966 and 1972). It was one of those heated “border rivalries.”
Then the SEC expanded to a seven game conference schedule and the yearly series was no more. They still played intermittently until the SEC went to a eight game league schedule in 1992. And just like that, one of the most heated rivalries in college football was no more.
Now is the time to bring it back, and I will tell you why. Because it’s what is in the best interest of both programs. It’s what’s best for college football. With the landscape of college football rapidly changing, now is definitely the time.
These two programs have played just six times since 1991 and that’s just plain sad. As great as the rivalry was back then, imagine what it would be like now with both programs being one of the elites. It would make recruiting battles between the two schools that much more important.
Fans are tired of seeing teams like Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, etc, whip up on teams like Furman, Wofford, and Charleston Southern. Even more importantly, fans are tired of paying to watch them. Watch how many empty seats there will be in the upper deck at Death Valley in a couple of weeks when SC State comes to town. With it being a home opener, there shouldn’t be any. There will be, though.
And don’t come at me with the excuse of those smaller programs needing those games to survive. There is a way to do this that could keep everyone happy.
First, eliminate all FCS games from future schedules. Move those games to the spring. Replace the spring game with an “exhibition” against the in-state FCS schools and charge admission. Share said revenue with those in-state schools. Problem solved. Fans are clamoring for football by the time spring rolls around and will pay to see those games then, as long as they are affordable.
Clemson and Georgia need to play every season. With the two teams set to face off in Charlotte next weekend, the two fan bases are remembering just how fun it is to hate one another. There’s a reason why it’s the hottest ticket in the country.
Not to mention, the Dawgs hold a decided advantage in the series. All-time, Clemson is just 18-42-4 against Georgia. The Tigers need this game to be played every year in order to get that back to a more respectable number.
In all honestly, in what world do two of the best programs in the sport currently, located so close to one another, not play each other every season. That’s right, only in the college football world. Fix it, and fix it now. Please.
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