UGA president 'absolutely' wants to keep Auburn series

semerson@macon.comApril 23, 2014 

Auburn's Ricardo Louis talks to press after the game. Georgia vs Auburn on Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013 in Auburn, Ala. Todd J. Van Emst

TODD J. VAN EMST — Todd J. Van Emst

ATHENS - Jere Morehead, the president of the University of Georgia, is all for holding onto one of college football's most storied rivalries.

"I absolutely support continuing the Auburn series," Morehead said Wednesday.

The question is whether Morehead will have enough support among his SEC peers.

Once again, the future of the Deep South's oldest football rivalry is up in the air. Auburn and Georgia have played annually since 1892, and whether the series continues past 2015 will likely be decided during the next month. The plan for scheduling, however, it plays out should be set at the conference meetings in Destin, Fla., in late May.

The SEC is working through its future scheduling philosophy, debating whether to go to a nine-game slate beginning in 2016. That option doesn't appear to have much support, as Alabama head coach Nick Saban told reporters on Tuesday night. So if the SEC keeps an eight-game schedule, the potential is it could squeeze out the annual cross-division rivalries of Auburn-Georgia and Alabama-Tennessee.

Morehead, who will cast one of the 14 presidential votes on the matter, was asked if Georgia fans should be concerned about the rivalry ending. He chose his words carefully.

"The presidents and the athletic directors will meet and resolve the scheduling issue shortly," he said. "There hasn't been a resolution on any of those issues at this point. So until a vote is taken by the presidents following that meeting, I can't predict what that outcome may be. We certainly appreciate that it is an important and longstanding rivalry for the University of Georgia."

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