Rocky Long says it's time for some coaches to get nervous
Posted by: Josh Kendall on December 14, 2012
It's time for the football coaches in the Big East, and any other conference that may be on the outside looking in right now, to start paying attention to conference realignment.
That's Rocky Long's opinion.
"I think Division I college football is going to five or six major conferences and they're going to have a tournament, and I think it's going to happen real soon," San Diego State's head coach said Thursday. "You have to be associated with one of those conferences to be able to be in that mix. Here we want to be able to play for a conference championships as well as a national championship, and the only way to do that is to be associated with those leagues that are going to be in that tournament."
San Diego State is set to join the Big East in football next season, but that conference's entire future is in doubt with seven basketball-dominant schools planning to form their own league. Long can easily imagine a near future where coaches like himself, Tommy Tuberville at Cincinnati, Paul Chryst at Pittsburgh and Chris Peterson at Boise State have no chance to compete at college football's highest level.
"I think (things) are developing as we speak," he said. "I think it's not over yet. I think there will be a lot of teams moving around in the next few years before they get to the tournament."
Long recently saw an ESPN breakdown of what a 12-team college football playoff might look like.
"As soon as TV starts talking that way, guess what? It's getting ready to happen," he said.
For a school like SDSU, the Pac-12 must look like a potentially great landing spot. Long was asked Thursday how his team would have fared in that conference this season.
"I think we'd be just fine," he said. "I don't know if we'd be playing for the conference championship, but I bet you we'd be in a bowl game and have a winning record."
Josh Kendall is a staff writer for CoachingSearch.com and has covered the SEC for more than 15 years for papers such as the Athens Banner-Herald, Macon Telegraph, and The State. He’s the father of two boys who he’s hoping don’t inherit his wide receiver frame and offensive guard feet. Follow @EyeOnCoaches on twitter and send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org