The NCAA Appears to Have Kept Things Together With Today's Decision, but for How Long?

Chris Dukes

SI's Ross Dellenger has reported the NCAA Board of Governors did not vote on whether or not to cancel fall sports championships during a Tuesday meeting. 

Shortly Dellinger's report, Stadium's Brett McMurphy reported the governing body will leave the decision up to individual divisions, allowing for the drastic differences between them. 

The agenda item, labeled "4c" said simply "fall sports championships", which many believed would lead to a vote on whether to cancel them outright. 

A decision to cancel had the potential to leave the FBS as the only active sport still playing at the collegiate level, which could have even bigger implications - as presented by Sports Illustrated over the weekend. 

Many believe the Power 5 could have decided to make a move to stage its own fall championships, a decision that could forever change the landscape of college football. 

One veteran college administrator described the NCAA and Power 5 as having long been embroiled in an "existential crisis," and wondered whether this fall sports gambit could be "the crack in the armor" that leads to an eventual split."Is this the final break?" The source asked. "You could have two championships: one from the (Power 5) and potentially some Group of 5s joining them, and a second one for everybody else in the spring. ... It's going to be real strange."

Our take 

Rumors of the Power 5 breaking off from the NCAA have been rampant all around the game for more than a decade, but it appears we are closer now than we've ever been before. 

Today's decision to give each division autonomy should keep all of college sports unified under one banner for now, but it also exposes the major differences between big-time Power 5 programs and smaller schools. 

While the smaller levels of college football and basketball certainly take the game seriously, it's just not on the same level as the FBS. It's like grouping Amazon in with a non-profit co-op in a small town. 

The rift still exists and it only seems to be growing bigger with every giant TV contract the larger conferences secure. 

Comments (3)
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Davis1123
Davis1123

I think we'll see a split when the conferences work out their new TV contracts. Isn't that in 2024?

2 Replies

Smithy
Smithy

That will probably also mean the end of the Big 12.

Chris Dukes
Chris Dukes

Editor

Like I said in the story, I've been hearing athletic directors and conference commissioners kicking the idea of a split around for as long as I've followed college football. I think it's a threat they tend to bring around when the NCAA does something they don't like, but one day something could push them over the edge.


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