Friday, June 11, 2010

Updates on Conf Expansion

I have been asking myself why I am so interested in the conference expansion/realignment stories.  The only real answer I have is that I have been hearing for four years that "when the Big 10 expands, the SEC is toast."  Now, I don't for a second think that is true, however, I also concede the point that this round of conference realignment will create a new paradigm for college athletics, one that might get us to a college football playoff and might give the SEC a run for its current money in college football prestige.

I have written posts on the two things that I thought were most likely to happen, based on information from earlier this week.  Now, I am not so sure.

For example:
  • PWD at Georgia Sport Blog thinks Texas A&M is thinking seriously about requesting joining the SEC, regardless of Texas' destination.  The open question is Texas seriously considering the SEC, even quietly. 
  • NewOK is reporting a Kansas City TV station has Oklahoma going to the SEC, along with Oklahoma State.  Texas going to the Big Ten, with Texas A&M.  
  • PWD also mentioned Oklahoma considering the SEC some social media venues.  
  • The Tulsa World has the SEC pursuing Oklahoma. 
  • The Pac-11 is exploring the possibility of holding serve at eleven teams.  It is also thinking of inviting Utah to get to 12 if things don't work out in Texas.
  • Apparently, no invitations have been issued to Texas schools from the Pac-11.
  • Missouri is a proud member of the Big 12, and Notre Dame and Rutgers might be 13 and 14 for the Big Ten.
I point all of this out to show that this situation is not as definite as it seemed even 48 hours ago. One thing that has been bothering me all week, though, is the nagging feeling that the the SEC is missing out.

My current feeling is no, even if the SEC doesn't expand, the only two places that makes logical sense for it to do so are into the North Carolina-DC corridor and into Texas.  I am not sure the SEC can get Virginia Tech (politically, the Virginia House of , the most logical of the schools in the NC to DC area (and they have a *huge* DC following, probably as big as UVA).  The other potential would be West Virginia, but in my mind, they are way down the list behind Virginia Tech.  There remains alot to see with what happens in Texas. 

As for Texas, one last thing that has occured to me is the possibility of bringing Texas A&M and TCU/Baylor/Texas Tech in, if Texas doesn't want anything to do with the SEC. I can think of pluses and minuses of TCU and Baylor (weather they be solid athletics or academics, plus having another solid private school in the mix).   I can only think of one plus for Texas Tech, namely the joy at seeing Tommy Tuberville back in the SEC.  That hardly can qualify as a reason for bringing the Raiders into the SEC, right?

Finally, I still can't get around Texas having about $20million reasons for keeping the Big 12 together.  I don't think we are at disaster of biblical proportions level right now for the Big 12, but who knows what the rest of June (or even today) brings?

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