Is college football headed for another round of conference realignment?
The answer to that question may not be an unequivocal “no” after a Wednesday report from the Houston Chronicle. The paper reported that Big 12 stalwarts Texas and Oklahoma had reached out to the SEC about possibly joining the conference.
The Big 12 currently has 10 teams and the SEC has 14. The addition of the two Big 12 schools would put the SEC at 16 teams and likely force a shuffling of its current East and West division format given that both Big 12 schools are further west than any current SEC school.
The report broke as SEC media days are taking place in Hoover, Alabama. Commissioner Greg Sankey repeatedly declined to comment on the report to multiple reporters. A spokesperson for Texas didn’t shoot down the report — or confirm it for that matter — to the Austin american-Statesman.
A move from Oklahoma and Texas would also likely lead to the dissolution of the Big 12. The conference would be unable to attract replacements on the scale of either team as football is the prominent revenue producer in college sports.
will this happen?
The Chronicle report said an announcement regarding the schools joining the conference “could come within a couple of weeks.” If that announcement happens and it’s about OU and UT leaving the Big 12 for the SEC, a lot of things will have been already sorted out.
The Big 12’s media grant-of-rights contract currently runs for another few years. The schools would have to get out of that contract to make the move. They would also have to work with the SEC on revenue distributions going forward to make sure the move was financially beneficial. And there would also be an entry date already settled.
There’s also a complicating factor in the Oklahoma state legislature, per CBS.
Why would Texas leave?
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