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College Football Realignment – Who to Keep an Eye On

College football fans are in for a historic 2024 season, as age-old conferences will shift with new and exciting teams from across the country. For those old enough to remember, the last time something like this happened was in 1990, when the SEC unprecedentedly expanded, adding Arkansas and South Carolina to its roster. While this pales in comparison to the nationwide reshuffling of teams happening now, it was still a landmark event at the time. 

With anticipated dramatic shifts in the college football landscape, new teams taking over established conferences, and under-the-radar teams preparing to challenge for the conference title, the upcoming 2024 college football season will be one to remember.

We’ve compiled a list of who you should watch for this upcoming season and some commentary about what these teams could accomplish.


Fresh Faces


Colorado has been arguably the most polarizing team in the country; Deion Sanders and co. have led this fallen program back into the national spotlight. They will have big expectations in the future, deservedly so, as their offense grows and develops around Shaduer Sanders and Travis Hunter. 

With their move to the BIG 12, Colorado will have every chance to win this conference and prove to the world that they deserve their hype.


Oklahoma will be a young and exciting new entrant in the SEC this upcoming year, as the team will have many up-and-coming talents in crucial positions. 

OU has all the talent to place in the top five in the SEC if its young players make their mark. Another team with an explosive offense ready to carve into its opposition, Oklahoma also has a great core of returning players on the defensive side of the ball. All eyes will be on the city of Norman to make their mark in their new conference this season.


Pac-12 runners-up last year, Oregon’s campaign for the CFP was stopped short by Washington. However, they have the talent and coaching to accomplish big things in the BIG 10 this year.

With one of the best-returning rosters in the conference, they added Dillon Gabriel from Oklahoma over the offseason. With their exciting new offense, Oregon has a real chance to make a statement in their inaugural BIG 10 season.


Texas is back. After a remarkable return to the CFP, Head Coach Steve Sarkisian is ready to lead this team to the ultra-competitive SEC. Their offense will be electric this upcoming season, with talent at every position.

Watch out for QB Quin Ewers to embark on a potential Heisman campaign if the Longhorns are at the SEC’s top, rivaling Alabama and Georgia for the title. 


Playoff Contenders

Kansas State

After Texas and Oklahoma’s departure, K-State is now a newfound annual BIG 12 contender. Winning the conference only two years ago, Kansas State has the opportunity to establish itself as BIG 12 royalty over the next few years and compete in the 12-team CFP. 

While the competition will be fierce, with many fresh faces and new matchups, Kansas State has the talent to establish itself as an excellent program for years.


Missouri has had a re-emergence that isn’t talked about enough in college football discourse. Even with the SEC’s new additions in Texas and Oklahoma, Missouri will be a strong contender for the expanded CFP. After going 11-2 last year, beating Ohio State, Tennessee, Kansas State, and almost upsetting Georgia at home, the Tigers have a real chance to do the same thing to Alabama and Oklahoma this year. 

Their 2024 schedule gives them a great chance of making the CFP. Can they capitalize on the NCAA’s good graces and make a run for the SEC title this year?

NC State

A new ACC contender to historic programs Clemson and FSU, the Wolfpack will be in the run for a playoff berth this year if they can retain their momentum from this past year.

NC State has had one of the most dominant defenses in the country. It’ll be interesting to see if, after the loss of star LB Payton Wilson, the defense can maintain its stellar reputation and reach a CFP playoff for the first time in history.


Old Bloods, New Eras


One of the most noted coaches in college football history, a Tuscaloosa legend, Nick Saban, has retired. Many thought this would spell the end of Alabama football as we know it, but the Crimson Tide spared no time getting his successor in the building, former Washington Head Coach Kalen DeBoer. The young Head Coach has shown immense promise, leading an underdog Washington squad to the CFP championship game last year. 

With promising quarterback Jalen Milroe at the helm, the Tide is ready to have one of the best offenses in the SEC this upcoming season. They will face tough competition as they run the SEC gauntlet, facing Georgia, Tennessee, LSU, Missouri, and Oklahoma in seven weeks.


The reigning National Champion, Michigan is on top of the world right now. However, most of their stacked roster last year has graduated, and their former NFL Head Coach, Jim Harbaugh, is now back in the NFL as a member of the LA Chargers. 

They, however, have young players ready to go at key positions and will be looking to keep their foot on the gas and gain another CFP berth. Donovan Edwards will be the figurehead of their offensive, as the star running back has immense talent to dominate his opposition.

Ohio State

No team will be as fired up to prove itself this season as Ohio State, as last year fell short of the Buckeyes’ high expectations. Ohio State has one of the best rosters in the country and a real chance to come out on top of the BIG 10.

They’ll have to watch out for newcomers in Oregon, as the Ducks will be hot on their trail this year. However, if Ohio State and its talented core can reach the CFP, they will have every opportunity to make a run for the National Championship this year.


Support Your Team This Season!

This season will be the first of many great ones to come, and Big Game is just as excited as you are to welcome in the new era of college football. Teams will rise and fall, age-long rivalries will form, and new college football royalty will be crowned. If you’re as avid a college football fan as we are, check out our wide selection of licensed FBS game footballs on our website today!

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