"It looks like divisions in college football could soon become a thing of the past.
In an expected move following recommendations from the Football Oversight Committee, the NCAA’s Division I Council officially voted to eliminate a requirement for conferences to have divisions in order to hold a conference championship game.
Previously, NCAA rules mandated that football conferences with 12 or more members hold a championship game and split teams into divisions with round-robin schedules for divisional opponents.
Now, FBS conferences will be able to create their own rules for deciding a champion. It’s expected that most, if not all, FBS conferences will put the two teams with the best records into their championship games instead of pitting the two division winners against one another. With that change, divisions could be scrapped as soon as the 2023 season."
I think that may impact other conferences moreso than ours, yea? What would be the benefit of the MAC removing the divisions? Off the top of my head I can’t really think of any.
No divisions would allow for the MAC’s natural rivalries to potentially be played in the MAC Championship. Western/Central is a big rivalry and would draw well in Detroit. If it happened to be any of the Michigan schools against each other, even Toledo as one of them, those would draw well. You’d have the possibility of a Miami/OU MAC Championship, or BG/Toledo, Akron/Kent, etc. If I were the MAC, I’d seriously think about getting rid of divisions.
As long as it helps us win more Reeces Pieces Cups.
If the MAC is smart, they’ll move to the 2+6 model.
Two permanent matchups every year (for us would be OU and BSU) and then the other 6 would rotate on a yearly basis.
Western, Eastern, Central would still play every season.
Akron, Kent, and Buffalo would play each other.
NIU- Toledo and Ball State
Toledo- NIU and BG
BG- Toledo and OU
Miami- OU and Ball State
Ball State- Miami and NIU
OU- Miami and BG
Well the West side of the conference in football has an argument they have been stronger and and I am sure those teams feel slighted when there #2 in the division has a better conference record than the East Champion. The MAC championship can feature two schools with the best conference winning percentage instead of allowing a 4-4 or 5-3 Division winner in the title game when they have a 7-1 divisional team sitting home.
Going without divisions means the MAC can now add WKU without the need for MTSU. Not sure the MAC is thinking that, but could be an option to help with basketball anyway.
The Athletic had an article today that talked about what each G5 conference is planning to do about divisions. The MAC is highly likely to stick with divisions and there isnt much interest in moving away from that. One reason cited was the geographic footprint with the Ohios + Buffalo in one division and the Michigans and IL/IN in the other makes a lot of sense.
Link: Sun Belt, MAC likely to keep divisions: Where do all Group of 5 conferences stand? - The Athletic
I feel very strongly that it would be a big mistake to go away from the football divisions. Perhaps switching BG and Toledo would even up the divisions if that is the reason for doing away with them.
Right now we have two championship races, and the MAC holds most divisional games back until the last 4 or 5 games of the year. Because of that, when we reach November, abut half the teams in the league have a realistic shot at making the championship game. This keeps hope and interest alive. If we just go with the two best records in the league, there will be nothing left but playing out the string for most teams. I would hate to think how boring MAC football could become in November with only 2 or 3 teams still playing for a championship.
Just last season we had a game on the last day of the season between Kent and Miami to determine the East championship, and it went down to the last play of Overtime. Killing divisions would be very harmful to MAC football. IMO