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College football: A look at conference parity

by Berry Tramel Published: November 5, 2013


The parity that infiltrated Big 12 football is new to this part of the country. But it's not new to the rest of college football. In the last 60 years, here are the times when a major conference spread its outright champion or designated champion over five schools in a five-year span. It never has occurred in the Big Eight or Big 12:


1998-02: Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, LSU, Georgia.

1982-86: Georgia, Auburn, Florida, Tennessee, LSU.

1981-86: *Alabama/Georgia, Georgia, Auburn, Florida, Tennessee, LSU

1956-61: Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, Georgia, Ole Miss, Alabama.

1955-59: Ole Miss, Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, Georgia.

1947-51: Ole Miss, Georgia, Tulane, Kentucky, Georgia Tech.


1998-2003: UCLA, Stanford, Washington, Oregon, Washington State, Southern Cal.

1992-97: Washington, UCLA, Oregon, Southern Cal, Arizona State, Washington State.

1994-2000: Oregon, Southern Cal, Arizona State, Washington State, UCLA, Stanford, Washington.


1999-2003: Wisconsin, Purdue, Illinois, #Iowa/Ohio State, Michigan,

1992-96: Michigan, +Wisconsin/Ohio State, Penn State, NW, Ohio State

1983-87: Illinois, Ohio State, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State

1960-65: Minnesota, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State


1967-71: Clemson, North Carolina State, South Carolina, Wake Forest, North Carolina.


1952-56: Texas, Rice, Arkansas, TCU, Texas A&M

Editor's Note: * Alabama and Georgia each went unbeaten in the SEC in 1981 and did not play each other.

# Iowa and Ohio State each went unbeaten in the Big Ten in 2002 and did not play each other.

+ Wisconsin and Ohio State tied in the league standings and in their head-to-head matchup.

by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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