The decision is in — the SEC has settled on an eight-game conference schedule once Texas and Oklahoma join the league for the 2024 season. No divisions, just 16 teams battling it out over the course of an eight-game schedule. Under this format each team will still be required to play one power-five non-conference matchup per season.
Commissioner Greg Sankey left the door open to potentially moving to a nine-game format following the 2024 season.
“We have been engaged in planning for the entry of Oklahoma and Texas into the SEC since the summer of 2021, but the change of the membership date from 2025 to 2024 creates scheduling complexities that can better be managed with a one-year schedule,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey.
“Creating a one-year schedule will provide a longer on-ramp to manage football scheduling around existing non-conference commitments of our members,” Sankey continued. “It will also provide additional time to understand the impact of an expanded College Football Playoff and engage with our media partners as we determine the appropriate long-term plan for SEC football scheduling.”
Sankey says that the eight conference opponents will be chosen based on fairness and balance. He added that the traditional rivalries would be taken into consideration as well.
“During this time of change, our fans will continue to enjoy traditional rivalries and begin to see new matchups presented by the addition of two historically successful football programs to the SEC,” Sankey said. “Each school’s opponents for the 2024 season will be announced June 14 on a special primetime show on the SEC Network, and dates of games will be announced at a later date.”
So there you have it — basically a one-year band-aid to buy themselves some more time. Expect this conversation to pick back up where we left it next offseason, as the conference weighs a move to a nine-game format once again.