Rather than have a bunch of Big 12 Implosion links in the football post, we're going to separate them. And yes, I'm using the term "Big 12 Implosion" rather than SEC Expansion as it feels more appropriate to me. In case you're a bit behind, here's a quick update. The Texas A&M Board of Regents are set to meet on Monday, August 15th, and item #15 on their agenda is this:
Item 15) Authorization for the President to Take All Actions Relating to Texas A&M University's Athletic Conference Alignment, The Texas A&M University System
The Texas Board of Higher Education called a special meeting on Tuesday, August 16th, but there's really nothing to discuss or reason for the meeting since the TAMU BOR will meet the day before. The humorous thing to me is that the Texas Board of Higher Education has "invited" testimony from SEC commissioner Mike Slive, Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe and some TAMU folks. Being invited and being compelled are two different things and I'm thinking that there aren't going to be a lot of people at this hearing. Coincidentally, the SEC will be holding a special meeting regarding conference realignment.
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Texas A&M Spins Up Conference Realignment Rumors, This Time Featuring SEC
Yesterday, AAS's Kirk Bohls talked with UT Athletic Director DeLoss Dodds, who said that he expects the Big 12 to survive and that the University of Texas staff is already working on a list of 20 names for a possible replacement of Texas A&M. The irony there is that it's UT is working on this and not the Big 12 or Dan Beebe, who has been silent and probably been sharting since sometime earlier this week. Bohls also tweeted that the following are a list of possible candidates to replace TAMU:
Top names UT, I mean Big 12, will consider from several sources: Notre Dame, BYU, Air Force in that order.
Bohls, along with Suzanne Halliburton and Ralph K.M. Haurwitz, talked with a Big 12 administrator, who said the following:
"I don't think A&M has thought through this thing with all its long-term ramifications," said the administrator, who was heavily involved in last year's negotiations that kept the Big 12 relatively intact. "I think they let their anger make this decision.
"In the Big 12, they're one of the three big dogs. I don't see them in the top three in the SEC. If anything, I think they'd be in the bottom three."
More after the jump.
Being a paper in Austin, I wonder which Big 12 administrator they talked to? Anyway, also yesterday afternoon, Kansas Athletic Director Sheahon Zenger said that the remaining nine universities were fully committed to the Big 12:
"The Jayhawk faithful can rest assured that we are in contact on a constant basis with our conference office and the other athletic directors in the Big 12 Conference," Zenger said, "and have been assured that the nine schools are firmly committed to the Big 12.
OB.com's Chip Brown wrote the following:
Sources said Thursday the SEC would be interested in adding Oklahoma and Oklahoma State and Virginia Tech in addition to Texas A&M to form a 16-team super conference. Florida State has also been mentioned as a possible target of the SEC, according to Big 12 sources.
Two officials at separate Big 12 schools said Oklahoma and Oklahoma State would stay in the Big 12 as long as the other schools were willing to stay together. A third official in the Big 12 said the remaining nine schools were "solid."
Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds said Wednesday it would be Texas' goal to hold the Big 12 together. But if there wasn't sentiment for that he said Texas and a school like Notre Dame should look at starting their own conference. Dodds has said he is against Texas going independent.
A high-ranking official at a Big 12 school said the Pac-12 could re-enter the picture if Texas A&M leaves for the SEC. The official said Pac-12 commissioner has indicated he would love to set up regional networks in Oklahoma and Texas Tech to accommodate Oklahoma and Oklahoma State as well as Texas and Texas Tech.
Scott said in an e-mail Thursday night he's "fully focused on developing the Pac-12" and would have no further comment.
Such a plan by Scott would require a complete re-working of the 20-year, $300 million Longhorn Network contract between Texas and ESPN, which is obviously a massive undertaking that would require Texas to give a little in terms of revenue sharing.
Yes, if I had it my way, I'd love for Texas Tech to bolt to the Pac-12, but I don't think Texas Tech gets an invite on it's own and you have to be invited to be in this dance. I'm thinking that the first thing that happens is that the Pac-12 asks UT if they want to join the party, if they do, then I think UT takes with them Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma St. If UT goes independent then I'm not so sure. I'd like to think that Texas Tech might still be asked to join along with OU, OSU and another Big 12 university, perhaps Kansas or Kansas St., but I think this is where it starts to get dicey for Texas Tech. If UT wants to hold the conference together and add some additional members, I don't think that is as attractive of a conference.
Remember that the reason why teams are added is that most conferences want to add eyes, or television markets. I don't think that Houston or Air Force adds a huge market and neither does TCU, which is why I understand UT is looking to add (yes, not the Big 12) Notre Dame and BYU. I don't think that Notre Dame or BYU makes that leap to be in a conference that looks to be held together by duct tape.
I expect things to be quiet today and Sunday with things starting to heat up back on Monday. Feel free to post any additional links for the weekend here.