Last week, former football coach Steve Spurrier gave his thoughts on conference realignment and other topics, ahead of his induction into the South Carolina Football Hall of Fame.
Spurrier said he thought rumors of expansion were just that, rumors, and that someone was trying to shake up SEC Media Days. Now a few key days later, we know that the rumors were very legitimate and were likely saved specifically for this time of year. Spurrier also pointed out that leaving the Big 12 for the SEC would be a precarious move for either Texas or Oklahoma, especially the Sooners.
“I don’t know why they would want to leave,” Spurrier said. “Oklahoma gets in that final four winning the Big 12 every year, and I believe I’d stay there and keep winning the Big 12.”
Oklahoma has dominated the Big 12 in recent years, securing 14 conference titles since 2000. Texas has won three conference titles since the league formed in 1996, including a National Championship in 2006. College football fans assume the two Big 12 schools will immediately vie for SEC championships based on their pedigree, but nothing is guaranteed.
South Carolina fans know the perils of joining the SEC. The Gamecocks have enjoyed some successful seasons since joining in the early 90s, but have only won a single SEC East title (2010). The competition in the South has become the strongest in the NCAA in the last twenty years. Spurrier mentioned that he hopes new head coach Shane Beamer can get the Cocks to national relevancy.
“The thing we proved is South Carolina can be relevant in college football,” Spurrier said. “We can be a top 10 program. It’s not easy, but it is possible. So hopefully, Shane Beamer and these guys can get us there.”