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The Next Step for the Conference System

Conference. Get it?

Happy Monday morning! I’ve tried to think about conference realignment as little as possible because it amounts to barely more than a high school popularity contest in which whispers and back stabbings take center stage in trying to form four super clubs. It’s easy for me to take that stance though, because UK is already assured a place in the coolest club, the SEC. However, my question is this: Should every school be confined to only one club, or should there be separate options for football, basketball and non-revenue sports?

The whole situation will have to shake out more before I can definitively say how I feel on the topic, but in regard to the non-revenue sports, I don’t think it would be a bad idea to establish loose conference ties to schools that are geographically accessible. Let’s say Texas goes to the ACC, should Wake Forest’s rowing team be expected to travel to Austin for matches? That doesn’t make sense. Other than Texas A&M, the Southeastern conference doesn’t look to be adding anyone far outside of its titular boundaries, but that doesn’t mean it would be best for UK to remain exclusively in the conference.

What if Kentucky played basketball with schools from the ACC and what will have been formerly known as the Big East? With four super conferences, two previous automatic tournament bids will be gone. Why not let football play with the giant, 16-team conferences, and let schools choose a different path for basketball?

Like I said, this is all conjecture, but it’s something to think about as we forge ahead into the unknown realm of conference realignment.

Article written by Matthew Hays

16 Comments for The Next Step for the Conference System



  1. BigBlueLush
    10:46 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Screw that we are an SEC school. Stay in the SEC for all sports.



  2. Brian
    10:53 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Makes things way too complicated, especially for TV contracts. Plus, it keeps the conferences balanced. For example, UK is terrible in football but we bring better basketball to the SEC.



  3. MtnCat
    11:02 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Football is a minor sport for us. Awesome idea! Kind of like a SEC developmental league for the football challenged.



  4. 44 Stitches
    11:10 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    I use to joke years ago that there needed to be a football conerence made up of basketball schools UK, Indiana, Kansas, UNC, duke, Wake Forest, UCLA, Arizona, UConn, Maryland, Syracuse, and louisville.



  5. drewsster02
    11:11 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    I have always felt that a move to the ACC would be a more logical step for UK in sports. The ACC is a better basketball conference and a less competitive football conference. A move there, though it might be a little better on football, it would be much tougher in basketball. But I like a challenge.



  6. KyTom
    11:13 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Actually, for some of the more minor sports, this already happens.



  7. Sheeeeiiit
    11:18 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Cal has been saying this will happen for a while…the four major conferences. He knows what’s happening on just about every level of college and pro BBall. I love that about Cal. So I’m sure he will have an opinion on this topic and I say we go with what he advises. Between Cal and the rest of the people advising UK we should be in good shape. Unless the city needs to be included then we are pretty much screwed.



  8. Han
    11:22 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    1) Um, actually, we’re always C-USA in soccer, I believe.

    Notre Dame is Big East in basketball, independent in football.
    St. Johns and Georgetown don’t have football.

    It wouldn’t be new, but it could get a lot more complicated if they change even more affiliations for the sake of basketball. I imagine the basketball teams will just go along with football to the 4 super conferences, but it wouldn’t shock me if they still keep some method of allowing others into a tourney so as to not lose some basketball traditions that won’t be in football conferences.

    It will depend on whether they outright dump the NCAA or not. If not, March Madness will just adapt and they may still keep out plenty of teams from the power conferences in favor of still having Cinderellas.



  9. drifter
    11:24 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    ha…he said titular



  10. 44 Stitches
    11:30 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    The soccer team used to be in the MAC and has been in Conference USA for a few years now. Only reason for that is only three SEC schools (UK, Vandy, S. Carolina) have mens soccer teams.



  11. Michael
    11:36 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    We should drop out of the SEC and head to the ACC. It will be the best basketball conference and we would be competitive in football.



  12. bluesince66
    11:38 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Don’t think you should seperate your major sports teams, we’ve been in the SEC since it’s conception, so we need to stay. Just because we don’t have a very good football team is no reason to look for an easy way out.



  13. bluesince66
    11:54 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    We’ve been in the SEC since it’s beginning no reason to run because our football team is going down hill.



  14. Carl
    1:44 pm September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Why was it that all the sports media types ‘poo-pooed’ the idea of super conferences when Cal talked about it in the spring? This was inevitable. Now SEC needs to grab some basketball schools to compete with the ACC. West Virginia, Louisville and Texas would be good adds or work Kansas in. You can expect UCONN to head to the ACC next.



  15. Carl
    1:51 pm September 19, 2011 Permalink

    What is interesting is that the ACC is not building for football even though that is where the real money is. THey will have an awesome basketball conference but won’t have any teams that could consistently be in the top 10 in football. There best hope in football is for Free Shoe U to stay out of trouble.



  16. RealTalk
    2:00 pm September 19, 2011 Permalink

    I think that would be a great idea!