Which college football teams are most helped — and hurt — by conference realignment?

MisterGopher

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It was an uphill climb for the Gophers in the old system...maybe we had optimism it shouldn't have been...but it was.

I think playing in the Big Ten if do put together a 10 win season that we probably have a better chance to be one of 12 teams in the playoffs. In the old system we had to play Ohio State or Michigan and beat them to advance. Now, if we are one of the 12 we probably play somebody we beat in 1960 or something...so there will be optimism we can do this.

This could be the year...we are predicted to either win 10 or 5...lets try 10...see what happens.
 

It was an uphill climb for the Gophers in the old system...maybe we had optimism it shouldn't have been...but it was.

I think playing in the Big Ten if do put together a 10 win season that we probably have a better chance to be one of 12 teams in the playoffs. In the old system we had to play Ohio State or Michigan and beat them to advance. Now, if we are one of the 12 we probably play somebody we beat in 1960 or something...so there will be optimism we can do this.

This could be the year...we are predicted to either win 10 or 5...lets try 10...see what happens.
Where have you seen 10 wins predicted (outside of Gopher Hole, that is!)? I'd love to see it happen, but if it does, I'm not sure who is going to be able to say they called it.
 


It's hard to know. The list just happens to have the power teams at the top and then declining power from there.

Can any prediction be made yet?

I love the Gophers playing a slaughter schedule because maybe Gophers up their game and eat bigger game, already eating fine.
 


context - in case people haven't read the article. the author says up front that this was a general look at how the realignment impacts programs. he states that he did not consider coaching or rosters in this assessment. so it's all based on a historical perspective of the program.

a lot of it seems to come down to whether realignment gives a school a better or worse chance of making the expanded CFP Playoffs. he also puts a lot of weight on how schools are impacted by the end of Divisions, and mentions NIL as a factor. You will note that, of the B1G West schools, Nebraska got a 0 while the others all got negative scores. Please note who tied for the worst score........

To assess, I’ve given all 67 power-conference schools a score between minus-5 and positive-5. The score is solely about a team’s ability to win, and does not take into account the team’s current coaching staff or roster. Scoring a 0 means the school is neither better nor worse off. A score from 1 to 5 ranges from mildly better to far better, and -1 to -5 ranges from mildly worse to … uh oh.

Here's the B1G rundown:
OSU +4
Michigan +3
Penn State +3
MSU +2
Oregon +2
Maryland +1
Rutgers +1
Nebraska 0
Wisconsin -1
Illinois -2
Indiana -2
USC -2
Washington -2
Minnesota -3
Northwestern -3
Purdue -3
Iowa -4
UCLA -4
 

Not surprised to see most of the former West teams on the negative side. They are the ones who were hurt most by the additions of the west coast teams and the elimination of divisions.

Especially Wisconsin (who I think should have a score like -4) and Iowa. They were the best programs in the old West division during it's 10 year existence and got to 4 B1G championship games largely due to playing in a weak division.

Now either of them will need many factors to align to make a championship game appearance.
 

Where have you seen 10 wins predicted (outside of Gopher Hole, that is!)? I'd love to see it happen, but if it does, I'm not sure who is going to be able to say they called it.
Correct, the majority of predictions I have seen are predicting the Gophers to miss a bowl game...5 wins.
And I'm not saying we will win 10 games but myself and some others on Gopherhole feel like it is possible. I don't believe it happens if we lose game 1. 5 of the first 6 games are at home. Win those and we can dream...and I do believe they are winnable. Possibly favored in all 5 of the first 6 games at game time if we win week one. So, it's not really even unlikely if we are who I think we are.
 

B10 better form some kind of regional divisions again because no one is going to care about team #11 or lower. The old rules have to be brought back about transferring to end the chaos, and the NCAA has to go back into federal court to get a measure of sane governance back in its hands - all the way to SCOTUS, if it has to. In all likelihood, Nebraska is moving up and the Gophers are not in this new system.
 



I agree generally. The thing is, there are still only 9 games on a conference schedule in an 18-team league. Some years will be tougher than others.

This is a hugely subjective list, but my only real disagreement would be Michigan State. Both MSU and UM won't be up at the same time. Dantonio's MSU was good when UM was mediocre then that reversed once Harbaugh picked up steam.
 

I agree generally. The thing is, there are still only 9 games on a conference schedule in an 18-team league. Some years will be tougher than others.

This is a hugely subjective list, but my only real disagreement would be Michigan State. Both MSU and UM won't be up at the same time. Dantonio's MSU was good when UM was mediocre then that reversed once Harbaugh picked up steam.

the author's point on MSU is that MSU - in his opinion - is no longer 'blocked' by being in the B1G East where it was behind OSU, Mich and PSU. so, in theory, if a MSU team managed to have a 10-2 season, it could qualify for the expanded CFP playoffs.

as I said, the author puts a lot of weight on the end of divisional play. as he sees it, teams in the old East division could wind up with easier schedules if they don't have to face OSU, Mich and PSU every year. conversely, teams in the old West division could wind up with harder schedules.

I'm not saying I buy his logic 100%, but his whole thing is whether the new setup makes it easier for teams to potentially make the CFP playoffs.
 

the author's point on MSU is that MSU - in his opinion - is no longer 'blocked' by being in the B1G East where it was behind OSU, Mich and PSU. so, in theory, if a MSU team managed to have a 10-2 season, it could qualify for the expanded CFP playoffs.

as I said, the author puts a lot of weight on the end of divisional play. as he sees it, teams in the old East division could wind up with easier schedules if they don't have to face OSU, Mich and PSU every year. conversely, teams in the old West division could wind up with harder schedules.

I'm not saying I buy his logic 100%, but his whole thing is whether the new setup makes it easier for teams to potentially make the CFP playoffs.
Teams in the East also used to get automatic wins vs Indiana, Rutgers, and Maryland.
 

The elimination of the BG10 East positive impact is really just the elimination of playing Ohio State every single year and Michigan to a lesser extent. Michigan will still play OSU and MSU every year and effectively substitute Penn State for other teams (some of which might be better) but they also won't play the perennial dregs of the BG10 in Rutgers, Indiana and Maryland as often. If the goal is to make the 12-team playoff and not a championship, yeah, Michigan is better off, but so is every single team in the conference as it will be easier to be a top 12 team than a conference champ. The analysis seems inconsistent.
 



I don’t understand how realignment is helpful to any of these teams. Their chance to win a conference championship has been significantly reduced.

The expansion of the CFP definitely helps all teams. One step forward, two steps back.
 

4 teams are out west. Would need two more to create 3 Big Ten divisions.

Divisions don't mean what they used to. Poll rank is what people talk about, not if team won B1G West.
 

4 teams are out west. Would need two more to create 3 Big Ten divisions.

Divisions don't mean what they used to. Poll rank is what people talk about, not if team won B1G West.
Hopefully not AP poll because that one is traditionally biased for the SEC and their 8 game conference schedules.
 

I don’t understand how realignment is helpful to any of these teams.
Agree. They list tOSU as a +4. Really? Adding USC and Oregon is helpful for Ohio State??? And Oregon gets a +2? Before they had to compete with USC and Washington and Utah. Sub out Utah and replace with tOSU, Michigan, Penn State and that's helpful for them????

Also, I'm really struggling to understand how anyone gets a 0. Is he just saying that Nebraska is wandering around in no man's land so they are pretty much indifferent to anything that happens?

Talk about the need to drum up some content in order to make an article.
 

It was an uphill climb for the Gophers in the old system...maybe we had optimism it shouldn't have been...but it was.

Respectfully disagree. I think it's frankly pathetic that we could never capitalize on winning our division and making at least one B1G title game. We only had Iowa and Wiscy in our way and we blew it every year. It's only going to get harder now
 

The Gophers have it tough due to two locked in rivalries with the two teams that were strongest in the West.

So not only do we get the tougher teams from the east more frequently, but we also get the top two teams from the West in Iowa and Wisconsin.

Good news is if we go 10-2 we are a CFP team.
 

Not surprised to see most of the former West teams on the negative side. They are the ones who were hurt most by the additions of the west coast teams and the elimination of divisions.

Especially Wisconsin (who I think should have a score like -4) and Iowa. They were the best programs in the old West division during it's 10 year existence and got to 4 B1G championship games largely due to playing in a weak division.

Now either of them will need many factors to align to make a championship game appearance.
Fickell seems to have Wisconsin rolling with another excellent class for 2025 , to follow up their best class in a long time in 2024.
 

Fickell seems to have Wisconsin rolling with another excellent class for 2025 , to follow up their best class in a long time in 2024.
Fickell is the real deal. Like all coaches he has some quirks, but he’s a legit D1 coach.
 

Fickell seems to have Wisconsin rolling with another excellent class for 2025 , to follow up their best class in a long time in 2024.
Didn't Chryst get fired partly for lack of effort recruiting?
 

Respectfully disagree. I think it's frankly pathetic that we could never capitalize on winning our division and making at least one B1G title game. We only had Iowa and Wiscy in our way and we blew it every year. It's only going to get harder now
I don't believe I said I was satisfied with our results in the West. My point was winning the West seemed like it would be hollow to me if we are just going to go lose to Michigan or Ohio State by 5 touchdowns.
With the new system, if we have a good season, we will play somebody we don't have a defeatist attitude towards. There will be optimism and we will have more belief we can beat that team than we would have if we played Michigan or Ohio St.
(Think Twins vs Yankees...we are not thinking we might win going in.)
 

Didn't Chryst get fired partly for lack of effort recruiting?
Entire program was a mess, kids weren’t in top shape either, culture wasn’t typical Badger culture.
CLF has rebuilt it from ground up, quickly.
As an example Jack Nelson, LT had an unexpected disappointing season last year, he’s now 18 lbs heavier , testing better in combine type drills and running faster, stronger also, many others are having same upgrade, CLF seems real, a fine CEO, the DC and OC better step it up also this season, if they don’t, CLF won’t sit and wait.
 

I don't believe I said I was satisfied with our results in the West. My point was winning the West seemed like it would be hollow to me if we are just going to go lose to Michigan or Ohio State by 5 touchdowns.
With the new system, if we have a good season, we will play somebody we don't have a defeatist attitude towards.
So you think we'll get in the top 6? I don't. I think if we ever make the playoff, we'll be like a 10-12 seed and still end up playing Michigan or Ohio State or someone similar that just missed the first round bye.
 

So you think we'll get in the top 6? I don't. I think if we ever make the playoff, we'll be like a 10-12 seed and still end up playing Michigan or Ohio State or someone similar that just missed the first round bye.
What needs to happen is everybody in the top 2-3 leagues gets the same budget to pay players, say 10 million eventually.
Then the best programs win, you chose to pay 5 OLS , $500,000 each or give that $2.5 million to a QB.Up to the school and program , kids will go where the money is and then the best organizations who use the money best nd can coach them up the best, WIN.
Why would Mich or tOSU go long with this? Well, they’d need schools to play against also.
Level playing field and the top kids every year go where the money is for them.
 

Agree. They list tOSU as a +4. Really? Adding USC and Oregon is helpful for Ohio State??? And Oregon gets a +2? Before they had to compete with USC and Washington and Utah. Sub out Utah and replace with tOSU, Michigan, Penn State and that's helpful for them????

Also, I'm really struggling to understand how anyone gets a 0. Is he just saying that Nebraska is wandering around in no man's land so they are pretty much indifferent to anything that happens?

Talk about the need to drum up some content in order to make an article.
The reason it helps Ohio state is because a 10-2 Ohio state makes the playoff 85+% of the time now.

Even with Ohio state making the playoff with a loss sometimes, they have a TON more margin for error if the goal is a national title
 

The reason it helps Ohio state is because a 10-2 Ohio state makes the playoff 85+% of the time now.

Even with Ohio state making the playoff with a loss sometimes, they have a TON more margin for error if the goal is a national title
I think you will see further expansion of the playoffs eventually, League championship games will be automatic entry into playoff or part of the playoff.
Schools will need more and more money with kids getting paid and the networks will no longer be willing to pay for ALABAMA vs the Citadel non matriculated night school early season games where the audience says at halftime, “ Let’s go shopping or Bye, I’m playing nine holes.”
Eventually, every game will be an Interesting one, in league or inter- league against the best with a bigger more involved playoff and maybe 1-2 less regular season meaningless games against weak sisters.
TV will rule because money rules now that the horse is out of the barn and players are getting payed.
 

Correct, the majority of predictions I have seen are predicting the Gophers to miss a bowl game...5 wins.
And I'm not saying we will win 10 games but myself and some others on Gopherhole feel like it is possible. I don't believe it happens if we lose game 1. 5 of the first 6 games are at home. Win those and we can dream...and I do believe they are winnable. Possibly favored in all 5 of the first 6 games at game time if we win week one. So, it's not really even unlikely if we are who I think we are.
This is a little bit of a word salad, but if I'm deciphering it correctly, you're saying there's a chance we'll be favored in 5 of the first 6 games?

I will bet you any amount of money you wish at any odds you desire that that doesn't happen.
 

4 teams are out west. Would need two more to create 3 Big Ten divisions.

Divisions don't mean what they used to. Poll rank is what people talk about, not if team won B1G West.
How about 4 divisions with 5 teams each?

I’d throw Nebraska in with the four West Coast teams and add 2 more from southeast, like Fla St and NC as an example.
 




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