The league was established in 1974 to reduce the number of second divisions in Germany from five to two and thereby allow direct promotion to the league winners. Along with the foundation of the 2. Bundesliga Süd, formed from clubs of the two former Regionalligas of Süd and Südwest, went the foundation of the 2. Bundesliga Nord, which was created from clubs of the other three Regionalligas, Nord, Berlin and West.
The league was created from thirteen southern and seven southwestern clubs, reflecting the difference in size of the two regions, south being much the larger.
The winner of the 2. Bundesliga Süd was directly promoted to the Bundesliga, the runners-up played a home-and-away series versus the northern runners-up for the third promotion spot.
The league operated with 20 teams in six seasons of its existence, only in 1980 was there 21 teams in the league. The bottom three, some years four teams were relegated to the Amateurligas, after 1978 to the new Oberligas.
Until 1978, below the 2. Bundesliga Süd ranked the following Amateurligas:Amateurliga Saarland
The winners of the larger leagues of Bayern and Hessen were directlly promoted while the other seven leagues had to play-off for two more promotion spots. After 1978 these seven leagues merged down to two new leagues and the champions of those four remaining leagues, now called Oberligas, were all directly promoted to the 2. Bundesliga Süd.Oberliga Südwest
In 1981, the two 2. Bundesligas merged into one, country-wide division. Nine clubs from the south and eight from the north plus the three relegated teams from the Bundesliga were admitted into the new league, the 2. Fußball-Bundesliga.
The Stuttgarter Kickers, SV Waldhof Mannheim, SpVgg Fürth, SpVgg Bayreuth and FC Homburg all played every one of the seven seasons of the league.
From the Regionalliga Südwest, seven clubs qualified for the new 2. Bundesliga Süd, from the Regionalliga Süd it was 13 clubs.
The qualifying modus saw the last five seasons counted, whereby the last placed team in each season received one point, the second-last two points and so on. For a Bundesliga season within this five-year period, a club received 25 points, for an Amateurliga season none.
For the seasons 1969–70 and 70–71, the received points counted single, for the 71–72 and 72–73 season double and for the 73–74 season three times.
To be considered in the points table for the new league, a club had to play either in the Regionalliga in 1973–74 or to have been relegated from the Bundesliga to it for the next season, something which did not apply for the south as both teams relegated from the Bundesliga in 1974 went to the north.
The bottom three clubs in each league, nominally the relegated teams in every other season, were barred from entry to the 2. Bundesliga, regardless of where they stood in the points ranking.Source: DSFS Liga-Chronik (German), page: C4, accessed: 18 March 2009
Bold teams are promoted to the 2. Bundesliga.
1 SV Alsenborn was denied the 2. Bundesliga licence.
Source: DSFS Liga-Chronik (German), page: C4, accessed: 18 March 2009
Bold teams are promoted to the 2. Bundesliga.
1 Barred from gaining access to the 2. Bundesliga due to having finished on a relegation spot.
The league was dissolved in 1981. According to their performance of the last couple of seasons, nine clubs of the league went to the new 2. Fußball-Bundesliga while the champion was promoted to Bundesliga. The ten remaining clubs were relegated to the Amateurligas.
The teams admitted to the 2. Bundesliga were:Kickers Offenbach (Runners-up)
Stuttgarter Kickers (3rd)
KSV Hessen Kassel (4th)
SV Waldhof Mannheim (6th)
SC Freiburg (7th)
SpVgg Bayreuth (9th)
Freiburger FC (10th)
VfR Wormatia Worms (12th)
SpVgg Fürth (14th)
Of the nine clubs, only one came from the southwest region, VfR Wormatia Worms, all others were southern clubs.
Relegated teams:to the Oberliga Bayern: ESV Ingolstadt, FC Augsburg
to the Oberliga Hessen: VfR Bürstadt, FSV Frankfurt
to the Oberliga Baden-Württemberg: SSV Ulm 1846, VfB Eppingen
to the Oberliga Südwest: Eintracht Trier, FC Homburg, 1. FC Saarbrücken, Borussia Neunkirchen
The reduction in numbers of second division teams hit especially the Saarland hard, having their three most well known clubs, all members of the Bundesliga at some stage, relegated. While the FC Homburg and the 1. FC Saarbrücken soon bounced back, Borussia Neunkirchen never returned to second division football but did remain a force in the Oberliga Südwest.
The winners and runners-up of the league were:Promoted teams in bold.
The third promotion spot to the Bundesliga was decided through a play-off round of the runners-up of the two 2nd Bundesligas. Here are the results of this round:Bold denotes promotion-winner.
The league placings from 1974 to 1981:
Source:"2. Bundesliga Süd". Das deutsche Fussball-Archiv (in German). Archived from the original on 5 January 2008. Retrieved 8 January 2008. FSV Mainz 05 withdrew from the league in 1976.
Source: 100 Jahre Süddeutscher Fußball-Verband. Vindelica Verlag. 1997. p. 173.