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The worst possible version of the SEC’s three permanent opponent format

The format everybody wants with the opponents nobody does.

NCAA Football: Missouri at Auburn John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

With the confirmation that Texas and Oklahoma will join the SEC in 2024, the new conference scheduling format has been a hot topic of conversation. Most have zeroed in on the “3-6-6” model as the best option, which gives each team three permanent opponents, and rotation between the rest of their division foes every two years.

With this, virtually every sports media outlet has published their ideal version of who these three permanent opponents should be for each team (we’re guilty of this too, even if we were ahead of the curve doing it almost a year ago). But what if instead of showing you the best possible version of this, we should you the worst? That’s right, no historic rivalries maintained, no attempt at competitive balance, just the worst possible idea anyone could think of.

The worst SEC schedule model imaginable

TEAM Opponent 1 Opponent 2 Opponent 3
TEAM Opponent 1 Opponent 2 Opponent 3
Alabama South Carolina Vanderbilt Oklahoma
Arkansas Kentucky Florida Mississippi State
Auburn Texas Missouri Kentucky
Florida Arkansas Missouri Ole Miss
Georgia Texas A&M Vanderbilt Ole Miss
Kentucky Arkansas LSU Auburn
LSU Kentucky Tennessee Vanderbilt
Mississippi State Arkansas Texas Tennessee
Missouri Texas A&M Auburn Florida
Oklahoma Alabama Texas A&M Tennessee
Ole Miss Georgia South Carolina Florida
South Carolina Alabama Texas Ole Miss
Tennessee LSU Oklahoma Mississippi State
Texas Mississippi State Auburn South Carolina
Texas A&M Georgia Missouri Oklahoma
Vanderbilt Alabama LSU Georgia
  • Alabama: No Tennessee, no Iron Bowl (in fact no SEC West opponents period). Just a couple of perennial SEC East also-rans and the Sooners.
  • Arkansas: No Aggies, No Longhorns, no trophy games against Mizzou or LSU. Just an SEC West foe they seem to care very little about, and Kentucky and Florida.
  • Auburn: No Bama, no Georgia. Though as they face Texas, Missouri and Kentucky, at least the schedule gets a little easier.
  • Florida: Arkansas, Missouri and Ole Miss. Yawn. No more WLOCP, no more cross-division rivalry with LSU. Heck, we didn’t even give them the satisfaction of the former Spurrier bowl vs. South Carolina.
  • Georgia: We threw them a bone with Vandy, and gave them Ole Miss for good measure. This model also forces Georgia to travel to Kyle Field every other year, something they have yet to do since the Aggies joined the SEC.
  • LSU: No Bama game, no Florida. No trophy game against Arkansas or rivalry weekend matchup with Texas A&M. Just the malaise of playing Kentucky and the Tennessee schools.
  • Mississippi State: Do they even care about anyone outside of the Egg Bowl? Doesn’t seem like it, so here’s Arkansas, Texas and Tennessee.
  • Missouri: Does anyone hate Missouri? Doesn’t seem like it, so here’s Texas A&M, Auburn and Florida.
  • Oklahoma: The Sooners get one of the more challenging slates with Alabama, Texas A&M and Tennessee. Having them play the Aggies instead of the Longhorns is true sicko stuff. Heck they don’t even get the Stoops angle by playing Kentucky.
  • Ole Miss: Egg Bowl be darned. Georgia, South Carolina and Florida is a pretty decent slate many years, but vitriol-filled it is not.
  • South Carolina: Alabama, Texas, Ole Miss. Just like the Longhorns’ bitterest rival was given to the Aggies, A&M’s hated Gamecocks will now play Texas instead.
  • Tennessee: Gone are Bama and Vandy, in are LSU, Oklahoma and Mississippi State. Not awful but as is the trend here, not particularly interesting either.
  • Texas: No Sooners. No Aggies. Just three teams that Longhorns can probably not care less about in Auburn, Kentucky and South Carolina. Yawn.
  • Texas A&M: Georgia, Missouri, Oklahoma. A&M plays the most dominant SEC team that they also happen to have the least amount of history with. Yes, you do get two former Big 12 foes in Mizzou and OU, but any Aggie will tell you they’re two teams that never inspired a ton of hatred, even in the best of times.
  • Vanderbilt: Because we’re just mean, the worst team in the conference over the past decade gets the teams who have accounted for the past four national champions and nine of the last 10 SEC Championship Game participants.

The SEC is bound to mess this thing up somehow. But no matter what they do, you can now be thankful that at least it won’t be as bad as this...unless then go with the one permanent opponent model.