Sports Illustrated's 'America Realigned': Where Would Ohio State Land?

Adam Prescott

To begin Monday morning, Sports Illustrated author Pat Forde released a unique and creative piece examining his purely hypothetical realignment of schools within the FBS college football landscape.

This idea, coined the “Forde Bowl Subdivision,” resituated the country into ten conferences featuring 12 teams each. All of the position was done geographically. While this realignment would likely never happen, let’s take a look at where Ohio State would land in the recategorized world of NCAA Division I college football..

The Great Mideast Conference would consist of Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Indiana, Cincinnati, Miami Ohio, Toledo, Akron, Ohio, Kent State and Ball State.

Forde’s hypothetical schedule would have each team playing 11 games against conference foes, along with one non-conference outing. For this purpose, the Buckeyes would get Penn State from the Yankee Conference (more east coast).

The Great Midwest Conference would house Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Kansas State, Eastern Michigan, Central Michigan, Western Michigan and North Dakota State moving up the FCS.

Read Forde’s entire “America, Realigned: A Radical Reimagining of the NCAA Landscape” by clicking HERE. You can see how every team would be repositioned throughout the article and also view the groups in the graphic below:

SI American Realigned Graphic 2020
Illustration by Andrew DeGraff

Despite the reshuffling, Ohio State would remain in the same league as bitter rival Michigan. OSU has defeated the Wolverines eight-straight years, however. 

Beyond that, the Buckeyes wouldn’t appear to have a ton of trouble in their way. Michigan State remains as a potential annual problem but other main threats Wisconsin, Penn State and Iowa are now elsewhere.

Check back throughout the week as Sports Illustrated dives into additional storylines this new realignment might create, including a hypothetical playoff bracket and more!