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Taco Truck
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2019
241 posts

ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Copied from The Athletic. I don't own rights to this story......now sue me.

Thirty years ago, Arkansas said goodbye to the Southwest Conference, lighting the fuse of a powder keg that would explode less than five years later. As universities began focusing on using football’s television contracts in an arms race that still has no end in sight, the Razorbacks’ move to the Southeastern Conference adhered to the golden rule of college sports: It made cents, so it made sense.

Today, the SEC offers prestige. It offers security. The last time a team left the conference, Americans were still three years away from setting foot on the moon. (Rough call on that one, Tulane.) Most importantly, it offers more cash than anyone could have dreamed of when the Hogs made the move.

Still, since joining the SEC, Arkansas has few trophies and fewer rivalries in the cash cow sport of football.

Related: Read the Arkansas installment of the State of the Program series here.

The Razorbacks, who have finished with a winning conference record once in the past nine seasons, will get a taste of the past this fall after setting a Sept. 11 home date against former Southwest Conference nemesis Texas, a rivalry that’s the closest thing to one that burns 365 days a year around Razorback Country even though the two teams have met only once since 2008. But the Hogs would be better off getting more than a taste.

They ought to switch tables from the SEC to the Big 12, home of four former Southwest members, and find a seat for a full meal every year.

“I believe in tradition and we’re messing with tradition here,” then-Arkansas coach Jack Crowe said as the Razorbacks prepared to move to the SEC.

Arkansas can soothe its sorrows by counting its money from SEC membership. A move to the Big 12 would introduce risk and probably cost the university a few million dollars per year. Last year, the SEC distributed $45.5 million to member schools. The Big 12 handed out $37.7 million.

That affects fans … how, exactly?

Arkansas’ SEC membership checks every box for almost every reason that decisions are actually made in college sports. But fans would be happier for a host of reasons if the Hogs were Big 12 members. College sports, we are told, are a non-profit exercise. And the reality of Arkansas’ SEC membership is it has been a raw deal for fans from the start. Little has changed in three decades.

College sports are supposed to be fun. Conferences are supposed to be about rivalries and bragging rights. Once upon a time, they were about regional dominance.

Arkansas’ “Battle Line Rivalry” with Missouri joined LSU as a forced rivalry that pales in comparison to both sides’ true rivals and only matters one day out of the year. Fayetteville was six hours from the nearest SEC campus before Missouri joined the SEC. And with respect to the Mississippi schools and Vanderbilt, the nearest SEC campus that isn’t either of those? Fans must settle in for an eight-and-a-half-hour drive if they want to see Arkansas’ biannual games at Alabama. LSU? A shade under nine hours. Going to a road game on an average weekend either means taking time off from work and spending the entire weekend on highways or forking over money for a plane trip somewhere in the conference. A non-profit exercise, indeed.

As for the most fun thing in college sports, winning? In Arkansas’ 29 seasons in the SEC, it has averaged 6.1 wins per year with just three 10-win seasons, zero conference titles and one major bowl berth. The Hogs reached the SEC title game three times in that span, losing all three by double digits. Arkansas has suffered through 13 losing seasons in the SEC, including each of the past four seasons.

In the previous 30 years as a Southwest Conference member, Arkansas averaged 7.96 wins per season, with nine 10-win seasons. From 1954 to 1991, it finished with a losing record three times and won at least a share of 11 conference titles with one national championship.

The Hogs wouldn’t walk into the Big 12 and start collecting trophies, but they’d likely collect more wins by no longer sharing a division with Auburn, LSU and Alabama, who have combined to win or play for the national title in every season but one since 2009 and made up both halves of a national title matchup in 2011.

Security and calm waters are nice. The prestige of playing in the SEC is nice. But it doesn’t benefit fans.

No one in Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium relishes conference membership while Auburn hangs 51 points on the board to send the Hogs to 0-3 in the SEC and put another coach squarely on the hot seat. Stadium upgrades are nice, but any fan would rather win eight games per year in an erector set than struggle to break even inside a palatial coliseum.

Winning more would be nice, but even better, fans could be there to see more wins in the Big 12. There’s no such thing as a day trip to see a game away from home for Arkansas fans.

But join the Big 12? Fans are three hours from Oklahoma State and under four from Oklahoma, one of the premier venues in the sport. The Hogs’ storied basketball program could play an annual game inside another hallowed hall: Allen Fieldhouse, a four-hour drive from Bud Walton Arena. Kansas State is only an additional hour away, too. Most importantly, Arkansas would reunite with the only program that still makes fans’ blood boil year-round: Texas. In the process, it would reopen a recruiting pipeline to the state, too. Though it would lose former Southwest Conference rival Texas A&M, which joined the SEC West in 2012 to give the Razorbacks one connection to the past, old Southwest Conference rivalries with the Longhorns, Red Raiders and Horned Frogs could resume.

When Houston Nutt left Arkansas for Ole Miss, it lit Hogs’ fans fire, but those flames of rivalry cooled in a hurry after Nutt’s four seasons in Oxford. But decades later, the hatred for Texas still burns. And the opportunities to shovel more coal into that fire are increasingly rare. One will arrive this fall when Texas returns to Fayetteville, a week after former Southwest Conference foe Rice does the same.

The biggest hub for Arkansas alumni outside state lines? It’s the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, an area not in the SEC footprint that’s a melting pot of graduates from Arkansas’ potential new conference mates.

Priorities and circumstances change. Arkansas had a long-standing policy against scheduling Arkansas State, or any other in-state opponent. Those days are over now.

What’s certain is that competing in the Big 12 rather than the SEC would be a big win for fans, even if university bean counters might have to slightly readjust the budget.

Arkansas’ move to the SEC cost its rivalries and made life worse for fans. It cost the program a little bit of its soul. Other realignment moves have followed suit, from Nebraska leaving behind its Big Eight brethren to eventually share a conference with Rutgers and Maryland to storied rivalries such as Texas-Texas A&M, Kansas-Missouri and Pitt-West Virginia ending in the pursuit of money.

There are millions of reasons for Arkansas to stay put. Just under 10 million, to be precise. And not one of them means much for fans on fall Saturdays.

Every year Arkansas remains in the SEC is a win for its bank account and a loss for its fans.



Gorilla Ball
LSU Fan
Member since Feb 2006
8719 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Geez


ColoradoAg
Texas A&M Fan
Colorado
Member since Sep 2011
12570 posts
 Online 

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
What is with the LSU fans trying to get rid of SEC West teams today? Arkansas can compete in every other sport except football.


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416
pioneerbasketball
Arkansas Fan
Team Bunchie
Member since Oct 2005
110062 posts
 Online 

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Someone trying to get page views


Wtodd
Missouri Fan
Tampa, FL
Member since Oct 2013
60079 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
quote:

Arkansas’ “Battle Line Rivalry” with Missouri joined LSU as a forced rivalry

Correct but Arky and Mizzou have always been "friendly" rivals (except when it comes to Suitcase Mike)



starkvingrad
Tampa Bay Rays Fan
Florida
Member since Apr 2021
4442 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
quote:

Someone trying to get page views


Takes after you


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60
boogiewoogie1978
Arkansas Fan
Little Rock
Member since Aug 2012
12418 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
quote:

College sports are supposed to be fun. Conferences are supposed to be about rivalries and bragging rights. Once upon a time, they were about regional dominance.

It's supposed to be but it's all about money.
quote:

The Hogs’ storied basketball program could play an annual game inside another hallowed hall: Allen Fieldhouse, a four-hour drive from Bud Walton Arena.

Weird he put this in here. The whole article is 99% football related. Did he do this to make a point? We play Kentucky every year and it appears we are returning to elite basketball status.

quote:

Security and calm waters are nice. The prestige of playing in the SEC is nice. But it doesn’t benefit fans.

Fans don't matter in college sports anymore. It's all about money.
This post was edited on 6/7 at 9:26 am


dchog
Arkansas Fan
Pea ridge
Member since Nov 2012
6827 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
TV deals.


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20
lsusteve1
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2004
32867 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
I like em more than Aggie and Mizzou

All I got


1badboy
LSU Fan
madison'Al.
Member since Jul 2014
7377 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
ME TOO !!!


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30
starkvingrad
Tampa Bay Rays Fan
Florida
Member since Apr 2021
4442 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Really is ridiculous how those two are in the conference


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101
KellerChrystFan
Member since Sep 2018
4792 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
I couldn’t agree more. David Ubben with a flawless article yet again.

Missouri and Arkansas need to move on.


markinkaty
Member since Dec 2019
1843 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Arkansas used to have Broyles and Holtz as head coaches also. Haven't had those caliber coaches since. Broyles did a superb job building that program in 50s and 60s


Afrojedi
Memphis Fan
Member since Jul 2017
234 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
So, if this were to happen (I'm pretty sure it never would) and lets say Mizzou went with them, what would the SEC do? Stay at 12? Go east and try for Clemson and VA? Go west and try for TX and OK? What would SEC fans like to see?


Tridentds
Texas A&M Fan
Sugar Land
Member since Aug 2011
15678 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Holy shite the author sounds like a gaping pussy. STFU.
This post was edited on 6/7 at 9:44 am


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97
Old Money
LSU Fan
Los Angeles
Member since Sep 2012
27564 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
quote:

I like em more than Aggie and Mizzou

All I got


Ya, Arkansas fits in fine at this point.


piggilicious
Arkansas Fan
Member since Jan 2011
33422 posts
 Online 

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
quote:

Arkansas’ move to the SEC cost its rivalries and made life worse for fans.


The only real rivalry we had that we don’t now is Texas.

And someone tell this sweet summer child that my life ain’t worse because my team switched conferences.


FayetteNAM
Arkansas Fan
Boston Mountains
Member since Jun 2013
3284 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Honestly I’d be fine with either, I don’t like the Big 12, but as much as we all bitch about preferential treatment by the SEC for Alabama (football), Kentucky (basketball), and LSU (rape and cash payment coverups) it would fail in comparison to the way every B12 team gets treated vs Texas.

I would like to see 6 power conference of 12 members though.


Golfer1
Arkansas Fan
Naples, FL
Member since Jan 2021
1319 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Does This mean TN needs to move to the ACC?

They cant compete in Football either. Neither can the MS schools.

We are atleast good in every other sport besides football.

Cant say the same for 5-6 teams in the conference.


Chingon Ag
Texas A&M Fan
Hill Country de Tejas
Member since Nov 2018
855 posts

re: ARKY needs to move and stop sucking the SEC teat....
Member since September 2012. Pathetic cock sucker.


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