Categories: Alabama, Arkansas Razorbacks, Auburn Tigers, CFB Playoff, Florida Gators, Georgia Bulldogs, Kentucky Wildcats, LSU Tigers, Mississippi St., Mizzou, NCAA Football, Oklahoma Sooners, Ole Miss, SEC, Tennessee Vols, Texas A&M, Texas Longhorns, Vanderbilt
Tags: Greg Sankey
On Friday June 10th the BIG 12 announced that BYU, Houston, Cincinnati, and UCF will be joining their ranks in 2023 thus creating a path for Texas and Oklahoma to join the SEC for the start of the 2023 season as well. With the influx of cash and revenue that the Longhorns and Oklahoma SEC revenue is expected to close in on $1Billion by 2027. In 2021 alone the conference brought in $778 million which is a $56 million per school.
As of today, if a team from a conference makes the college football playoff that conference receives $6 million. There was a time and place where this was a ton of money. In 2022 it’s not.
Navigate research, based out of Chicago, says that a potential College Football Playoff expansion in 2026 to 12 teams could be worth $1.9 Billion. Yes, ESPN, CBS, NBC, and FOX will kick the tires on it but so will Amazon, Yahoo and a slew of other “new media.
Greg Sankey and the SEC knows this. That’s why it is in the best interest of the conference to secede from the College Football Playoff and create their own 8 team, 3-week tournament with an exclusive TV/Media Deal. It’s what is best for the conference. Right now, the SEC receives close to $70 million for their participation in the CFB Playoff. An SEC playoff with 8 teams would feature 7 games. In today’s Media Rights blitzkrieg, the new SEC Tournament alone would be worth at least $750 million per year. Compared to the $70 million the conference currently receives this makes the most sense. Afterall, why share $1.9 Billion with 4 other major conferences and the Group of 5 when you can do your own deal and keep all the money for yourself?
Right now, the revenue distribution per team is $5 million per team per year. An SEC only playoff would be worth $47 per team per year. Over the course of a decade that’s close to $420 Million…. PER TEAM. That’s just for playoff revenue. Combine that with regular season rights deals with SEC Network and ESPN that will begin in the next 24 months. You can expect close to $1.2 billion worth of media revenue for every school from 2025 to 2035. No other conference could come close to competing with facilities, NIL deals, Coaching salaries, or anything else that requires money.
Just for comparison purposes the conference that would be second closest to the SEC would be the B1G. Over the course of that same decade B1G projections would be right around $950 Million to 1 Billion per team. Think about what each SEC school could do with an extra $200 plus million over that 10 years span.
Let’s face it. No conference in the country likes to look at itself in the mirror more than the SEC. They do this while telling you why your conference is inferior, and they “ARE” college football. It just means more, right? Well, why even spend the conference’s time even sharing resources with the Cretans. Well, what about the other conference winning the CFB Playoff tournament and saying they are “National Champions”. Truth be told, we didn’t have a “True” champion until 8 years ago. I can’t help but notice that not a single team has taken any title banner down or removed any title display for a crown that occurred prior to 2015.
For old school college football fans this would make the AP National Championship trophy relevant again. Debates would be greater than ever. Fans would be clamoring for a Title Game featuring the SEC Tournament Champion and the CFB Playoff Champion. No playoff system is perfect. Consumers will always think there is a better way to do things. In some cases, they are correct. But if being a member of the SEC is truly special and unique then Greg Sankey and the 16 schools that make up this conference owe it to their institutions and fans to secede from the CFB Playoff in 2025. For the next decade I can think of a Billion reasons why.