I’ve had it up to “here” with all this Super Conference talk; this school jumping to the Southeast Conference, that school in an “informal” agreement with the Atlantic Coast Conference. It almost makes your head spin. Sixteen teams are just way too much. I mean how can you keep up with it all?
The Pacific Twelve Conference is already at; The University of California – Berkley, The University of Utah, The University of Colorado, The University of Arizona, Arizona State University, The University of Southern California, The University of California – Los Angeles, Stanford University, The University of Oregon, Oregon State University, The University of Washington and Washington State University. I’m out of breath just typing and that’s only twelve!
How about something more like this; PAC 12 – CAUN, UTUN, COUN, AZUN, AZST, CASC, CALA, CAST, ORUN, ORST, WAUN and WAST.
Stricken from every book and tablet. Stricken from every pylon and obelisk.
There now, isn’t that much nicer, cleaner and easier on the eyes. Yep, Super Conferences don’t have me in a “tizzy” because of their “monopolistic” stranglehold on college football (at least not yet), they’re driving me stark raving mad because it’s too dang hard to spit them all out at once. So I’m going to suggest that we as a “football nation” start referring to ALL colleges & universities by their college scouting “school code”.
That’s right, no more mentioning of any institution in Twitter, Text, Facebook, E-mail or paper print without using the properly accepted four letter designation. Otherwise, any and all deserving attention to what you might be saying will be thrown out with the likes of CASJ, FLAT or TNTC.
When I entered into the personnel world, school codes were the first thing I was tasked to learn. Not the intricacies of the QB in the pocket, not the hand placement of the OC on the nose, not the sink & separate of the WR at the break. No, the first thing I did was memorize the “secret foreign language” in scouting NFL talent.
It had to start somewhere
I’m sure it started somewhere in the Dallas Cowboys system under Gil Brandt (seems most everything did), and if it didn’t they’d probably take credit for it anyway. But these four letter monikers greatly eased the burden of scouts across the NFL. No longer would they have to type in The University of Texas, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and Florida State University. BINGO – TXUN, VAPI, FLST. Simple as that.
These abbreviations are universally accepted across professional football and used by National Football Scouting (NFS), Bears-Lions-Eagles-Steelers-Talent Organization (BLESTO) and a myriad of Independents that swear they don’t need “the list” but somehow always end up with a bootleg copy of it anyway.
A “method to the madness”
So here’s a quick lesson on reading and writing the “school codes” of football player personnel.
- Always start with the two letter uppercase postal abbreviation for the state the college or university is located. If perhaps it’s north of the border (ie Canada) then use CN. AL – Alabama, AR – Arkansas, CA – California, etc… .
- If it’s the “University of”, then follow the state code with “UN”. So the University of Alabama is “ALUN” and the University of Arkansas is “ARUN”, and so forth.
- If it’s the “State University”, then follow the state code with “ST”. This conveniently makes Louisiana State University “LAST”. Colorado State University is “COST” and Florida State University is “FLST”.
- Normally those schools not in the above categories will either have the first two letters of the school’s name or the first two letters of the descriptor words. Syracuse University is “NYSY”, The United States Air Force Academy is “COAF” and The University of Louisiana at Monroe is “LANE”. “LANE”? Yeah, the “artist” formally known as Northeast Louisiana.
- As with any language there are exceptions to the rules. For instance The United States Military Academy is not “NYAR” (for Army) but rather “NYWP” (for West Point). Go figure?
This system of identifying schools has made for smaller Excel spreadsheet “school name” columns, less carpal-tunnel syndrome in football player personnel assistants and a much “greener environment” for all of us by cutting down on the wasteful use of 8 ½” X 11” paper to list all the schools of the “Super-ior” Southeast Conference or the “Giagantor” Big Ten (or Eleven, or Twelve).
Embrace the movement people, school codes are here to stay. Now quick, all nine members of the Pioneer Football League starting with Valparaiso. Gotcha!