Debuting on the August 27, 2012 edition of Monday Night Raw, Team Rhodes Scholars, composed of WWE superstars Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes, officially have parted ways.
The decision was announced on the latest edition of SmackDown, effectively making February 1, 2013 the last day—at least for now—that the team is together.
The WWE's creative team's decision to divide both superstars might come as a surprise to some, specially given the surge in popularity both men had together. Many fans had speculated that Team Rhodes Scholars would be the next tag team champions in the recently revived tag team division—taking the title from the current tag team champions Team Hell No, composed of Kane and Daniel Bryan.
Now that Team Rhodes Scholars—a name given to the team based on Cody Rhode's last name and Damien Sandow's "Intellectual Savior" gimmick—are separated, it remains to be seen what will happen to each individual team member now that both are back in singles competition.
Both Rhodes and Sandow had been experiencing a significant push from the WWE as partners; whether these men will continue receiving such push as individuals remains a mystery.
The breakup comes after Team Rhodes Scholars informed SmackDown general manager Booker T, alongside his assistant Teddy Long, that they would no longer be competing as a team, but would still remain "friends."
Sandow and Rhodes' time as a team had been spent mostly acting as foils for the babyface team of Kane and Daniel Bryan—chasing after the team's tag team championships.
After failing multiple times to capture the tag team titles from Team Hell No, most recently at last month's Royal Rumble pay-per-view, Team Rhodes Scholars' return to singles competition is not completely unexpected.
Team Rhodes Scholars' separation may be a result of Rhodes' increased popularity now that the second-generation superstar has grown a mustache. Now that Rhodes' real-life half-brother Dustin Rhodes—better known as Goldust—has returned, the proposed brother-versus-brother match proposed for last year's WrestleMania may happen this year.
Ultimately, the WWE's decision to break up the team may be a poor idea that may end up costing one of the two superstars—as often happens with the breakup of tag teams (see Shawn and Marty).