There is change a'comin' on the college football front around the nation. The climate could, and depending on who you ask/believe/, will or could look different within days.
What's a sports guy to do? Let's air out a football forecast…
In my best weather man voice:
"There's a high pressure system moving in from the west and it's bearing down on the midwest. There are clouds building in the south and they're gaining steam. Very little going on out east, but that could change within days. You never know with the weather."
The Big 12 is down to 9 teams, for now. Will Oklahoma and Oklahoma State pack up and march west? They'll need to add surfing to their curriculum if so. Texas is waiting, presumably counting its money over there in the corner somewhere. Missouri is twisting in the wind, just a bit. We're not in Kansas anymore, Toto. Maybe the Big 12 won't be either.
What do I think? I think the SEC and Big East could benefit from this just as much as anyone. I think that Super Conferences are the way of the future and there is no stopping that storm. My guess (and nothing more than that… just my idea) is that by 2014 there will be four massive conferences with 16+ teams each. Those teams will make up the equivalent of the automatic bids to the current BCS format, only there will be no BCS bowl games.
I think Super Conferences will lead to PLAYOFFS in college football.
That's right. I'm hoping. I think that of the four conferences, the top 16 teams at the end of the year (four from each league) will meet in a four week postseason. The teams that don't make the playoffs will still fill out the rest of the bowl game field in matchups like the Sun Bowl, Humanitarian Bowl, ‘Hamburger Helper presented by Clorox Bleach Bowl' etc. etc.
This is just spit-balling here, but this is what I think the conferences will look like in 2014:
I think the ACC will start to splinter and those teams will join the Big 10, Big East and SEC. Florida State has already been hinted as being interested in the SEC. If they go, then there will be others right behind.
Same as now, only Texas, Texas Tech, OU and OSU will join the current 12-team structure.
Same as now, only Texas A&M, Florida State, Miami, Missouri, Clemson and Georgia Tech join the mix. Maryland may also join. The SEC could end up with as many as 20 teams.
Same as now, only add in North Carolina, NC State, Boston College, Boise State, Duke and Baylor. They will expand from the current dozen teams to 18 teams.
Same as now, only add in TCU, Virginia Tech, Virginia, Kansas, Kansas State and Wake Forest. The league will go from 8 teams today, to 14 teams in 2014. They'll also expand to 20 teams in basketball, gaining a big time player with Kansas.
A few teams are left out: Iowa State has to find a new home. SMU will be super mad after none of the big boys invite them to the party. And, despite having multiple suitors, BYU remains independent.
It may not be an exact science, but it could happen. It works in my head. Maybe it doesn't in real life. We'll see.