IDEAL COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Mount St Vincent
New Jersey Tech
New York Tech
New York Univ
Let me clarify one point of possible confusion right away: ICFB’s Atlantic Sun is not at all related to the NCAA’s ASUN. Ours is way up in the hinterlands of New England, whereas the doppelganger is primarily in the southeast. I’ve had this conference under design for many years, predating its emergence in the NCAA. Just want to put that out there. To me, Atlantic Sun connotes easternmost, as in the first lands to see the sunrise, and that would be the schools you see here. So, that out of the way, Ideal’s A-Sun includes mostly city/hyphenated schools from Vermont and Maine, many of which have been renamed. As mentioned at the outset, I abhor hyphenated names, and have eliminated them almost entirely. The only NCAA football-playing member is Castleton St (Western Vermont), surrounded by a host of newbies. Like all of these new conferences, the jury is out. As the inaugural season progresses we'll see the quality and type of football being played in the Atlantic Sun.
The Metro North (AMNU) is another new conference making its debut in Ideal College Football. Established programs at Maritime and the Merchant Marine Academy are joined by a mélange of new programs. We're melanging, which is a tricky business, but I think we're up for it. NY Tech is back, yet the remainder of these programs are tasting football for the first time. Some of these schools are iconic institutions. That right there is exciting. The thought of seeing this conference mature over the coming years is equally exciting. What can I say, I’m easily excitable.
Eastern Maine (Machias)
Eastern Vermont State (Lyndon)
New England College
New England, Univ of
Northern Maine (Presque Isle)
Northern Vermont State (Johnson)
Western Maine (Farmington)
Western Vermont State (Castleton)
Welcome to Division 10, the fetid backwaters of Ideal College Football's divisional alignment. If Division 10 were a movie scene, it would be the Death Star trash compactor scene from the original Star Wars. Ouch. Okay, if I leave this in, it’s because it was funny enough in my sleep-deprived state…and I beg your forgiveness. Division 10 is not actually a backwater, it is rather an overflow of sorts, because sometimes – no matter how much you envision perfect symmetry – she is elusive. There are actually some pretty cool conferences carved out here in D10. We begin with the Trans America Athletic (TAAC), a conference that was active from 1978-2001 before being swallowed alive by the realignment silliness (it is currently the Atlantic Sun, but barely looks like what it was). Six schools that were in the NCAA TAAC at some point in its history are in Ideal’s Trans America: Houston Baptist (the only school currently playing NCAA football), Belmont, Lipscomb, Centenary, Little Rock and Pan Am (now Rio Grande Valley). Arlington, a former football school that is being dredged up from the pits of hell, is alive and well in the new Trans Am. The other schools are FCS types who have time-honored basketball programs, and are now going to be testing themselves in shoulder pads and helmets. And frankly, isn’t it long overdue?
Deep South = Sunshine State. The Sunshine is an NCAA D-II conference that has never sponsored football. We’re going to rectify that right here right now by inaugurating the Deep South Conference and giving all listed teams a football program. Nine of these schools are former or current members of the SSC. We’ve filled out the roster by awarding teams to Flagler and FL Memorial, giving the conference an NCAA/NAIA hybrid feel. The Deep South is all Florida, all the time.
Mount St Clare
Mount Vernon Nazarene
Eastern Univ PA
Biscayne (St Thomas)
Boca Raton, College of (Lynn)
Palm Beach Atlantic
St Petersburg (Eckerd)
Kentucky Highlands (KYChr)
Virginia Highlands (Va-Wise)
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Okay, I’ve mentioned several times how there is a plethora of NAIA schools in the Midwest. Well, many of these schools do not field a football team. Many of them should. The American North (ANAC) is Ideal’s answer to this issue. These 12 schools have been chosen to inaugurate a brand new incarnation. As none of them have experience on the field of play, I have no idea what quality of football will emanate from the AmNorth. But there is football on these campuses, and that's a good thing. And don’t we all want good things?
Have you noticed the preponderance of new football programs in the Southeast in recent years? I decided they needed their own conference. Seriously, sittin' here one day and said to myself “by golly, these guys need their own conference.” Got some cross-eyed looks from folks nearby who had no idea what I was talking about, and must've figured I was off my meds. The result: give a big ol’ bear hug to the South Coast Conference (SCC). We’ve got schools from Florida, Georgia and Alabama, the return of two dormant programs (one recent, one remote) and two new programs. Some of these teams have gotten very good very quickly, and my prediction is that the SCC is going to evolve into a little beast of a conference. These schools are scattered among various NAIA conferences, and were just begging to be grouped together. So let’s bind ‘em and play ‘em and, by all means, keep an eye on this conference.
Piedmont = Conference Carolinas. What a convoluted timeline this league has had, although admittedly, no worse than many other conferences. I’ve gotta say, while doing the research to put Ideal College Football together, I have been repeatedly astounded as to the shifting nature of conference affiliations vis-a-vis common sense. I don't mean to sound snarky or anything, but come on. It's a wonder that students/fans put up with it. In any case, this'n right here is a group of schools that form a natural alliance. And aren't they ripe for a dose of intercollegiate football. So here it is, America, Piedmont football. Five of these schools are current NCAA Carolinas members (Belmont, Erskine, Limestone, Mt Olive and Pfeiffer). Four others (Coker, High Point, St Andrews and Longwood) are ex-members. We’ve added to this soiree Spartanburg, Lander and Augusta. Five schools from North Carolina, five from South Carolina, one each from Virginia and Georgia. Symmetry is awesome.
Our final contestant, take the stage please. The Eastern Conference (EC) was birthed from the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference (which eventually morphed into the CSAC), and the membership you see above is based largely on that 1990’s configuration. Largely, though not entirely. As none of those schools actually play NCAA football, the process of picking the EC was somewhat subjective. Lincoln does play football, and has chosen to play in the CIAA, probably because of the dearth of suitable competition in their region (the PSAC schools are more suited to high-level D-II scheduling, whereas the Lions are a new program still feeling their way). We can solve that in an instant (the best way to solve issues) by moving Lincoln into a league with nearby NCAA D-III schools, and give those schools football programs. Behold the Eastern Conference. Future membership in the Eastern may evolve; however, if so, the character and geographic basis of the conference will endure.
Corpus Christi (A&M)
Kansas City (UMKC)
Pan American (UTPA/UTRGV)
That was fun. Did you make it all the way through? Did you need a 2nd beer? I needed a case of beer and several naps.
East Florida (Edward Waters)
Sue Bennett football was a sight to behold. The Dragons played for several seasons before disbanding, and did not win a single game. Not. One. Single. Win. That, my friends, is dedication. I decided they needed to be revived for Ideal College Football. Nay, not just revived, they needed an entire conference built around them. If we’re gonna to do this, we’re gonna to do it right, we’re gonna to do it with dignity. Welcome to the Blue Ridge Athletic Association. BRAA …. hmm, we’ll workshop that. In any case, these are a group of schools in the Appalachian bluegrass region of eastern and central Kentucky, western Virginia, West Virginia and southern Ohio who are … wait for it … begging to be grouped together. And begging to play tackle football, that’s right. Five of them currently have football programs, the aforementioned Sue Bennett team is being dragged out of the seventh layer of Hades (where I predict they will win at least one game), and the other six schools are new to the sport. This....could be interesting.
Copyright © Steven Sugarman