You know those in-game trivia challenges the announcers do? Well during Auburn’s game against Texas A&M, the question asked which is the last SEC East team to win the SEC Championship.
Here is ESPN’s Anthony Becht — while covering an Auburn game — thinking Auburn is in the SEC East. pic.twitter.com/JOY7o3t5I7— Dr. Saturday (@YahooDrSaturday) November 4, 2017
The actual answer is Florida, but an ESPN analyst guessed “Auburn.” There’s a problem with that, though, because Auburn’s in the SEC West.
This highlights the largest point of SEC geographic contention: Auburn should be in the SEC East. It’s much closer to many of the SEC East campuses than other teams in the West, and it would work well for everyone to throw ‘em on the other side and swap them for Missouri.
The big reason they aren’t in the East is that the SEC wants to preserve two cross-divisional rivalries (Auburn-Georgia and Alabama-Tennessee). An easy way around that would be to expand the conference slate to nine games or get rid of divisions entirely, but the conference won’t do that.
Auburn’s now-former AD Jay Jacobs wanted the Tigers in the East as well.
“It makes more sense for Auburn from the standpoint of the demographics of our students, not our student-athletes,” Jacobs said via Auburn’s 247Sports affiliate. “Six or eight years ago, I looked at all the demographics. Most of all our students come from Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina, Kentucky, a few from Mississippi, very few from Louisiana.”
For now, we have this mistaken case of geographic identity because Auburn’s in the West.