In case you haven't heard -- which means you're not plugged into one of SB Nation's many, many excellent college sports blogs -- our college communities have been working together on a massive offseason project: the great conference re-draft. Basically, team communities have are reassembling every school in the country into new conferences. Like a fantasy draft! Here's the original rundown of the whole game.
Here's the list of conferences as they stood entering Thursday, via BC Interruption, who are SB Nation Atlanta's current landlords due to selecting the Georgia Bulldogs in the second round. The Clemson Tigers have also joined on just moments ago:
|1||1. Texas||2. Florida||3. Alabama||4. Ohio State||5. USC||6. LSU|
|2||12. Georgia||11. Penn State||10. Oklahoma||9. Florida State||8. Notre Dame||7. Michigan|
|3||13. U.C.L.A.||14. Virginia Tech||15. Nebraska||16. Louisville||17. Oregon||18. North Carolina|
|4||24. Wisconsin||23. Miami (Fla.)||22. Texas A&M||21. Michigan State||20. Tennessee||19. Stanford|
|5||25. Washington||26. Auburn||27. Arizona||28. West Virginia||29. Syracuse||30. Arkansas|
|6||36. Duke||35. Kansas||34. California||33. Maryland||32. Kentucky||31. Iowa|
Team BCI's goal was to put together a conference of huge, moneyed schools with diverse athletic departments that can deliver large TV markets. Texas was the obvious first overall pick, while UGA added an upper-tier SEC football program, the nation's best gymnastics, great golf, frequently good baseball and an ... improving hoops team, along with one of the nation's most profitable athletic departments and one of the Southeast's oldest universities.
The Duke Blue Devils don't exactly hit that entire profile, but BCI stay winnin' by selecting the nation's premier basketball conference (and even more money, to boot) in Round 6, which was somehow Basketball Round. I have no idea how Louisville and Kansas were picked ahead of Duke, but fortune is like that sometimes. Everybody had a great big laugh at Loovul going in Round 3. Between Duke and UCLA, we have the nation's two best all-time basketball programs, plus Duke and those west coast schools are good at various non-revenue sports.
Team Speed Kills' conference looks solid so far in both football and basketball, while two of those other conferences look like total messes to me.
Not quite sure who may be eying the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, though I'd imagine they'd be picked in the next round or two. BCI has been keeping a close eye on its academic profile, but has already locked down Atlanta's TV market by including the Dawgs. To this point no other conference jumps out as being any more or less academics-minded, which would be Tech's top selling point. A top school with an ACC basketball program and a strong SEC football history in Atlanta likely won't stay on the board for long, though.
I was thinking our squad should've selected either the Virginia Cavaliers or Oklahoma St. Cowboys with its next pick. UVa would fit the conference's main strengths -- rich, historic state school with top-notch academics -- while supplementing its Olympic sports base.
Okie State would be more of a best-talent-available selection; though they're not known for academics, they also contribute to football, basketball and baseball postseasons, boast the country's best wrestling and solid golf, plus bring that T. Boone Pickens paper. I'd imagine they'll be gone to Black Heart Gold Pants' conference next, where they'll join Penn State and Virginia Tech to lock down college wrestling for all time. Hopefully one will still be around 11 picks from now.
Still, Clemson provides perhaps the ACC's best football fanbase; good soccer, golf, track, tennis and baseball; and an instant rivalry for Georgia.