Texas and Oklahoma reach out to join the SEC, does this affect Notre Dame?

·2 min read

The Houston Chronicle reported Wednesday that Big 12 powers Texas and Oklahoma have approached the SEC about joining the conference. This move would cause huge ramifications across the college football world, and for Notre Dame, it will present an interesting scenario.

The Irish are coming off their first season with a conference affiliation, winning the ACC regular-season title. Even though they lost a rematch to Clemson in the league championship, the resume was enough for them to gain a berth in the College Football Playoff for the second time in three seasons.

The move angered many die-hard Irish fans, but with many schools canceling out-of-conference games, there really wasn’t an option for Notre Dame.

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What the 2020 season did was quiet many of the doubters who said the Irish would struggle with a conference league schedule.

The news today could have some legs; SEC’s Commissioner Greg Sankey declined to comment on the situation.

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If Texas and Oklahoma were to join the southern power conference, would this matter to Notre Dame? It certainly would, especially with the CFP’s expansion to 12-teams looming in the future. The question is how much would it matter?

The depth the SEC would have if the Big 12 powers joined would be almost unmatched across the college football landscape. The conference could have multiple teams in the CFP after the expansion, which would make the number of available spots diminish.

It might not matter at all, as an Irish team that would have double-digit wins would almost certainly be inside the top-12 and grab a spot. It still bothers me a bit that Notre Dame is essentially a No. 5 seed at best, due to the proposed expansion’s rule requiring the top four teams have a conference title.

At the end of the day, the potential move for Texas and Oklahoma really doesn’t do anything to affect Notre Dame’s status. The rivals can go to the SEC, all the Irish have to do is focus on themselves and impress the committee enough to get a top-12 seed while staying independent.