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Southeastern Conference Will Split Into 2 Divisions, Presidents Decide

ASSOCIATED PRESS

The presidents of the 12 Southeastern Conference schools have voted to divide the SEC into two divisions, with each team playing eight league football games a year, the SEC announced today.

The presidents also approved on Wednesday, during a telephone conference call, a plan for a 16-game men’s basketball schedule.

The division of the conference was made possible when Arkansas and South Carolina agreed to become new members earlier this year.

The SEC office said Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt will be in one division. Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Louisiana State, Mississippi and Mississippi State will be in the other.

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The football schedule, expected to be in place for the 1992 season, when South Carolina and Arkansas officially join the league, will feature a championship game between the divisional winners.

Under a 5-2-1 format, each SEC team will play all five teams in its own division and two permanent opponents in the other division each season, then will rotate among the four other schools, playing one per season.

The two permanent opponents of each school are: Florida--Auburn and LSU; Georgia--Ole Miss and Auburn; Kentucky--LSU and Mississippi State; South Carolina--Mississippi State and Arkansas; Tennessee--Arkansas and Alabama; Vanderbilt--Alabama and Ole Miss; Alabama--Tennessee and Vanderbilt; Arkansas--South Carolina and Tennessee; Auburn--Georgia and Florida; LSU--Florida and Kentucky; Ole Miss--Vanderbilt and Georgia, and Mississippi State--Kentucky and South Carolina.

The Atlanta Constitution, quoting an unidentified source close to the presidents, said presidents voted 10 to 2 for the alignment. The SEC declined to reveal the vote.

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Under the plan, every SEC member will play every other member at least twice during an eight-year period. The order of non-divisional rotating opponents will be determined later.


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