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  • Writer's pictureJoe Wisniewski

The SEC and Big Ten Align Powers

By: Joe Wisniewski

February 20, 2024

Photo Credit: Saturday Down South

The Big Ten and SEC officially announced on Feb. 2 that the two conferences will join together to form an Advisory Group. This Advisory Group will consist of university presidents, athletic directors, and chancellors from both conferences to help address the challenges that are facing college athletics. Big Ten commissioner, Tony Pettiti, stated, “The Big Ten and the SEC have substantial investment in the NCAA and there is no question that the voices of our two conferences are integral to governance and other reform efforts. We recognize the similarity in our circumstances, as well as the urgency to address the common challenges we face.” The decision to align comes in a time of extreme uncertainty for college athletics. While the group does not have authority to act independently, it hopes to serve as a place to have open and honest discussions regarding their futures.

While it is difficult to assume what the direct results of this partnership will include, their decision to act as a consulting group should surprise no one given the massive success of the two conferences. Both the Big Ten and the SEC are expanding their conferences in effect at the start of the 2024 college football season. This move also comes after the two conferences have inked media deals that are worth well over a billion dollars. 

Overall, this advisory group is the first step in the next direction for what’s to come in college athletics. As the NCAA is challenged in court daily, this alignment foreshadows the ultimate abandonment of the NCAA’s rules and powers. The money involved within college sports is allowing these conferences to operate like big businesses, not the home of amateur athletes. It also, unfortunately, gives insight to the smaller universities that could potentially be left in the dust of the major powerhouses.


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