Football fans across the country support their alma mater teams as much if not more than their state's NFL football teams. They can’t wait to watch their college crush the rival team on the field and cling to their traditions. Unfortunately, college football is taking a new direction this year, and next year traditions and rivalries might disappear altogether.
It’s no secret that Texas A&M has decided to withdraw from the conference and has already been accepted as the 13th member of the SEC, and rumor of Oklahoma following close behind has circulated as well. The fate of the Big 12 rests in the hands of the Sooners, and with the recent signing of Syracuse and Pitt to the ACC, the Big East may be crumbling along with them.
So what does this mean for the future of college football? Many sports fans are speculating that four 16 team super conferences will emerge out of the rubble left by the Big East and Big 12, and some are beginning to accept the likely changes.
"I'm an old school guy and I hated to see things start breaking down last year,” says Dr. Dan Matthews, a dentist and Texas Longhorns fan comments. “When Nebraska left and Colorado made plans to leave I thought maybe we are going to go to four 16 team super conferences. Now with what's happening this year with Oklahoma making rumblings about leaving the big twelve, my thought would be that if that's where it's going I think that's probably a good thing.”
Other fans are apprehensive about the change, knowing that their traditions will soon become obsolete. “I think there will be super conferences,” Dr. Andrew Hall, dentist in Colorado Springs and alum of the University of Florida says. “I don’t know if it will be the best thing for college football because it will probably take away some of those traditional bowl gamed and some of the pageantry.” Dr. Hall like many others feel that college football will become more about business and television networking, which seems to be the case for larger teams that hold more weight with broadcasting stations such as Rutgers.
The emergence of four super conferences becomes a greater possibility every day the Sooners hold the cards over the Big 12. If the shift is made, seasons will become cleaner and easier to follow. “That will give us a true playoff and there won't be as much argument about who are the national champions,” Dr. Matthews says. “I hate to see old rivalries go away, but in the grand scheme of things maybe it's a good thing." Arguments over who the real national champions are would be much more difficult with cut-and-dried super conferences, as the winning teams of the individual conferences would face off and produce a winner much more easily.
The Big 12 and East are nearing the end, and fans may end up having to accept this shift in college football, especially if colleges are embracing the change themselves. Dr. Hall says, “I think if the money is there for a playoff system and if the schools get the money like they do for the bowls it will be more likely. I love the way the SEC championship game is setup now, but I think it will change."
Shanna Laub writes for e-Marketing Partner. Dr. Dan Matthews is a cosmetic dentist in Austin and a Texas Longhorns fan. Dr. Andrew Hall is a Florida Gators fan and implant dentist in Colorado Springs