In my most recent research rabbit hole designed to make Michigan look bad, I thought, Fuck Michigan. Quickly, I realized that was not enough to sway opinions, so I sought ways to discredit their "blue blood" status. DID YOU KNOW Michigan has only won one national title since NATO was created? That was before the Korean War began. I'm talking about Harry Turman's first term in office. lol@Michigan.
As I thought more about college football blue bloods, the question of who does and does not belong occurred to me. Wanting to get MNWildcat off my back during squeakyhoops season, I asked the other "writers" the following:
1. What defines an FBS Blue Blood in 2020? (List of current blue bloods optional)
2. Which team most recently attained blue blood status?
3. Which is the next team to attain blue blood status?
Read our methods and question our madness, then share your list below.
The pkloa Method
1. At least one National Championship last 50 years.
2. Multiple top 10 finishes last 20 years.
3. Top 25 in attendance every year (maybe one aberration in last 25 years)
4. At least one GREAT season in school history, defined as SRS rating of 25+ on sports-reference.com/cfb
Who made the cut? Sorted by top 10 seasons last 20 years: Ohio State Buckeyes, Oklahoma Sooners, Alabama Crimson Tide, Georgia Bulldogs, LSU Tigers, USC Trojans, Florida Gators, Texas Longhorns, Penn State Nittany Lions, Clemson Tigers, Auburn Tigers, Michigan Wolverines, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and Nebraska Cornhuskers. 14 teams out of 130. Not all teams are safe, though. USC had shitty attendance in 2018 and Nebraska's last two top 10 finishes were 19&20 years ago. Notable omissions: Miami (attendance), Tennessee (terrible two decades), and Florida State (no great season)
Stew: FSU's MNC season was great, as was one of their Charlie Ward years.
Me: Nuh uh.
The Stewmonkey Method
1. Must have multiple mythical National championships
2. Must have won at least one MNC under different coaches
3. Must have finished top 10 within last 15 years (essentially the lifetime of recruits).
4. Fertile natural recruiting ground.
5. Throws money around on coaches and facilities.
6. Must have won a P5 conference within last 15 years (Notre Dame lone exception).
I believe Clemson and FSU are the only teams that qualify as new blue bloods within the last decade, or so, under my 2nd point. Georgia, I believe, doesn’t currently qualify under my criteria, and are the most likely to relatively soon.
So under my criteria here’s a list off the top of my head:
Alabama, Clemson, LSU, OSU, Michigan, Auburn, USC, Texas, Oklahoma, Notre Dame, FSU, Florida.
Michigan about to fall off this list, btw. And UNL falls just outside the time threshold, and fails recruiting ground test. Miami fails the $$$ threshold and I think also falls outside the timeline. PSU fails the multiple coaches test. Minnesota, should they win the conference, still fails on the recruiting and $$$.
Andrew K: I would add must have a national title within the last 20 years but maybe I’m just selective. I just think if you can go that long without winning it all, your program’s strength is neither durable nor impressive.
pkloa: Does Michigan State fall short on the money and/or recruiting ground criteria? They actually meet the others (technically). Also, I respectfully disagree with the multiple coach point, jerk.
Andrew K: Lol in no way shape or form is MSU a blue blood unless we’re taking hoops and I missed it and even then I think it’s iffy.
The BigRedTwice Method
1. More than one NC. Strong national recognition and fan following (due to bandwagons for successful teams, these are probably redundant to state, but oh well.). I like Stew’s list, though I don’t think his #4 is necessary. I think it’s likely to be a feature of a blue blood, as it helps achieve the other criteria, but don’t think it needs to be its own piece. If Nick Saban moved Alabama to the moon next season and had his typical amount of success, Alabama would not cease to be a blue blood, because all the other factors would still be in place. I realize its inclusion was probably more about finding other ways to delist Nebraska, though I think the time factor most have mentioned does that more effectively.
Most recent additions are Clemson and LSU, IMO. I’m not sure LSU can quite duplicate dominance without Burrow, but have to assume they’ll continue to be a big draw for talent and will be just fine.
Stew: I think the recruiting ground is a bit implicit, but I also think it’s important enough to specify. Top line coaches want built In advantages, and Minnesota ain’t a blue blood.
WhiteSpeedReceiver: I agree with Stew, with BRT’s exception. Recruiting territory can be made up with other (either $$$$ or Arizona State’s) methods. But other than that, yup. And Clemson is the most recent addition with their 2nd & 3rd NC’s.
WSR: Michigan and USC... USC has been strongly overrated my entire life except for a blip in the early 2000s when they were making SMU look like paupers. And Michigan. Oh boy, Michigan. In the last 20 years you’re just smart, rich wisconsin.
Stew: Yup, both are teetering. History, money, and recruiting are better, and those matter. And that’s the separation. But it’s getting close. And Texas is a couple of back years from faltering, as well.
WSR: Yup. Poor Texas can’t live off Tim Brewster’s work forever.