Florida at LSU November 19th, after the grandstanding by both sides
He said it three times Monday, and he was correct.
“We will have a home game November 19th,” said LSU director of athletics Joe Alleva.
The Florida Gators will be coming to Baton Rouge, after all.
So, after a week of haggling, much of it public,
LSU wins, and the SEC and Florida lose.
The past week has been a huge embarrassment for the Southeastern Conference. It was one that would have been avoided under the leadership of previous commissioner Mike Slive.
On Tuesday of last week, as Hurricane Matthew became a considerable threat to the east coast of Florida, Slive would have forced a decision.
Either move the game to Baton Rouge, a neutral site, or play it in Gainesville Sunday or Monday.
There’s no way Slive would have allowed a decision to linger until Thursday when the game was postponed.
That a conference game, that could be critical to deciding a champion in either division, would be left hanging is amazing.
And, what is even more amazing is the grandstanding by the two athletic directors that has occurred, since.
Never, ever, would this have occurred under the leadership of Mike Slive.
Alleva’s comments Monday, and the forceful way they were delivered showed zero deference to the league office.
And, on Thursday, after the decision to move the game to Baton Rouge was announced, outgoing Florida athletics director Jeremy Foley chimed in with this nugget.
“The conference office asked us to find a solution in working with LSU, yet LSU was never a true partner in our discussions,” Foley told reporters.
Again, with Slive in charge, this type of grandstanding, and criticism of a fellow league partner would never happen.
In a news release, the SEC noted that its commissioner’s regulations say that each team must play all eight conference games to compete for a division title and play in the SEC championship game.
And, the SEC said Presidents and Chancellors “have established the expectation for existing Conference policy to be revised to better define the process for completing postponed or interrupted contests and to grant authority to the Commissioner to determine the date and the location of future games that may need to be rescheduled if the two involved institutions cannot mutually identify a date.”
And, that’s the way it should be.
The commissioner should make a decision, and if it makes one or both institutions angry, so be it.
Commissioner Sankey did the right thing by making LSU go to Florida in 2017, and 2018.
So, as Ed Orgeron tries to go from interim to permanent head coach he faces this November:
Alabama, at Arkansas, Florida, at Texas A&M.
And, whoever is the LSU head coach in 2017 shouldn’t have exorbitant expectation.
LSU’s schedule includes the 2017 opener in Houston against BYU.
And, road games at Florida, Ole Miss, Alabama, and Tennessee.
Good luck, with that.