Auburn should not leave the SEC West

Published 4:24 pm Friday, June 2, 2017

There are always conspiracies within the SEC that fans hear every year. Somehow it’s always supposed to be Tennessee’s year, South Carolina is always supposed to compete, and the East will beat the West. Some of these are unfounded; some of these are based off of summer workouts.

It make’s sense. People love to speculate. However there is one rumor in the SEC that I have been hearing more and more of that I just will not accept as true, even if it happens.

The Auburn Tigers should move to the SEC East.

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This is nonsense. I heard it again during the SEC interviews down in Destin, I’ve heard it before, and I’m sure I’ll hear it again. This move should never be made.

I am an Alabama fan, anyone who reads these columns knows that, and I do not want to see Auburn leave the West. As much as I pick on Auburn (they are the little brother, anyways), Alabama needs them in the West.

The rivalry would lose some of its magic if the Tigers move. The Iron Bowl has decided the West representative in the championship game more times than not over the years and it adds ferocity to the game that is unmatched in college football.

Also, think about what this would do to other cross-division rivalries. If teams can only schedule one yearly game with a team from the other division, what will happen to the Alabama vs. Tennessee game? Auburn vs. Georgia would become a division game, so Auburn would have to trade them for Alabama and leave Alabama stuck with two East games.

The move just makes no sense to me.

I don’t know anything about the money behind conference alignments or even TV markets for that matter. However, strictly from the standpoint of a fan of the sport I find this talk blasphemous.

Why would Auburn even want to leave the West? An argument is it makes sense geographically, so what? The road to your rival’s doorstep is two and a half hours; don’t tell me the location proves they should be in the East.

Unless, of course, it’s the easy way out.

I would rather play Vandy, Kentucky, South Caorlina and Missouri every year other than Alabama, LSU, Ole Miss, or Texas A&M any day of the week. However, that’s what makes the SEC West so special.

I am not knocking the East by any means. Georgia, Florida and Tennessee are strong teams every year. It’s why the SEC champion is always a favorite to win it all; both sides are strong.

However I simply feel like Auburn leaving would dismantle the gauntlet that is the SEC West.

If the SEC wants realignment, I think it should be programs that parallel each other. Trading Auburn for Missouri wouldn’t be a good deal.

I think Kentucky for Mississippi State would be a good realignment to shake things up, but the powerhouses need to stay put.

So Auburn, from an Alabama fan I ask you to stay. Don’t shake up what we’ve created.