Rumors have been swirling the past couple of days about a possible matchup between the LSU Tigers and the Wisconsin Badgers. When news first broke, it was believed that LSU AD Joe Alleva had all but shot down the idea of his Tigers playing the University of Wisconsin citing the possibility of the SEC moving to a nine-game conference schedule as the reason.
While the nine-game conference schedule is a convenient excuse, those of us outside Baton Rouge, Louisiana aren’t buying it for a minute.
I don’t think Alleva is opposed to playing Wisconsin. He just wants to play them on his terms.
Possible venues that have been thrown out there have been Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas; Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas; and Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. For obvious reasons, Wisconsin was/is in favor of the game taking place at Lambeau Field while Mr. Alleva is in favor of the two Texas sites.
Gee, I wonder why LSU would rather play Wisconsin in the state of Texas as opposed to playing the Badgers in the state of Wisconsin? It couldn’t possibly be due to the fact that Houston has the largest LSU alumni base outside the state of Louisiana, or that Texas is a fertile recruiting ground for the Les Miles and his staff would it?
No, that couldn’t possibly be it.
Instead, Alleva has been quoted as saying that, “There’s too many things to consider. The biggest thing to consider is the value of playing a game that far away versus the value of playing a game in Tiger Stadium. That’s what it comes down to.” He added, “from a recruiting standpoint it’s a great game to tell kids you are going to go play in Lambeau Field. But Wisconsin is a long way away.”
I was no geography major in college, but the last time I looked, Seattle, Washington was 2,611 miles away from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, while Green Bay, Wisconsin is merely 1,118 miles away. LSU didn’t have a problem traveling that far away to play the University of Washington in 2009, so don’t give me the “Green Bay is too far away” nonsense.
If a deal cannot be reached that will send LSU to Lambeau Field to face the Badgers, in the eyes of many it will appear that the LSU AD is a little weary about sending his team deep in to the heart of Big Ten country, even if (on paper) the opponent is overmatched.
Needless to say, that wouldn’t look good for the almighty SEC.