Tuesday Takes: The SEC Needs to Move to Nine Conference Games
Enough with the cupcakes.
Florida fans only get to come to Ben Hill Griffin Stadium and watch the Gators play a home game six times a year. The nature of the game of football only allows you so many.
And among those six, look at UF’s home schedule for 2019: UT-Martin, Tennessee, Towson, Auburn, Vanderbilt, and Florida State.
How many of those feel like hot tickets to you? Auburn for sure, and then maybe Florida State even though the Seminoles are embarrassingly bad? Just because it’s FSU?
It is an absolute shame that Florida fills two of its home games with FCS squads like UT Martin and Towson. Tennessee and FSU are plying like borderline FBS schools at this point, but there’s not a lot you can do about playing those teams.
There is a lot you can do with UT-Martin and Towson, though. The easiest, fastest way to get rid of one? Expand the conference schedule from eight to nine.
Instead of Towson, the Gators need to host another SEC West team at home on the years it does not LSU. This year UF had Auburn, and that will likely be the only entertaining home game this year - assuming Vanderbilt and FSU are rather boring.
Furthermore, other than one opponent per year, SEC East teams only play SEC West teams outside of one rival every year. For example, the Gators play LSU every year, and then the rest of the West is a six-team rotation.
That means that the Florida-Auburn game only happens once every six years. And the Florida-Auburn game in the Swamp only happens every 12 years.
Show me the person that likes that. Show me the person that would rather see Towson in the Swamp instead of another SEC team.
Expanding the schedule from eight conference games to nine would add another west team yearly, thus splitting the rotation in half. Then, Florida would see the SEC West schools not named LSU every three years instead of every six.
The SEC has opportunities to do easy things like this to fix its scheduling. Basically everyone wants it.
People complain about the stadium being empty at kickoff, when the chance to play against teams the fans have actually heard of is right there in front of you.