Has it come to this? Is the SEC that afraid of the empty threat of a lawsuit that they are hesitating on taking Texas A&M? Could it be true that the ACC showed more intestinal fortitude than the SEC is showing?
This whole lawsuit threat is merely something that gives everyone a chance to pause. The SEC is willing to step back and wait because there is no need for them to rush.
The Pac-12 gets to think a little longer about how much it wants to take Oklahoma. All the Big 12 members are willing to take a step back for the moment. The only place that is really pissed off about this are in College Station, Texas.
“We are being held hostage right now,” Loftin said of being forced to stay in the Big 12. “Essentially, we’re being told that you must stay here against your will and we think that really flies in the face of what makes us Americans for example and makes us free people.”
Uh, yeah. Hyperbole much? And the recommitment and public statements about sticking with and supporting the Big 12 in the prior year? Well, those don’t count.
Do you recall back in the summer of 2003, when the ACC was pursuing their Big East raid? Where the ACC went behind the Big East’s back to court Miami. Did the Big East threaten a lawsuit? No. They filed one. Not just filed a lawsuit, but got state attorneys general to participate.
Remember what it accomplished? Unless you are Syracuse or Virginia Tech, it merely acted as a minor delay.
Oh, it made ACC schools skittish enough that they couldn’t muster sufficient votes to take Miami, BC and Syracuse in one swoop. Instead, it gave the Virginia legislature and governor time to bring pressure on UVa to not support any expansion without bringing Virginia Tech to the conference. VT was even a party to the Big East lawsuit against Miami, BC and the ACC. Since enough ACC teams wanted Miami, they decided to take VT as well, and waited a year before getting BC.
Other than a brief delay and getting VT into the ACC, the only other thing that the Big East got out of it was an agreement for a bunch of home-and-home games.
This Big 12 joke, isn’t even the threat of a lawsuit. It is that Baylor (and now Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State) won’t waive their right to bring a lawsuit.
The reports are that the objections would be dropped if Oklahoma (and by extension Oklahoma State) reaffirm their commitment to the Big 12. Right. All this is going to do is make Oklahoma more eager to run.
If A&M is forced to stay in the league, and it continues at 10 teams, what kind of environment would ensue? It would be a pirate ship of a conference. A virtual prison, with every school sleeping with one eye open, because it trusts no one. Do you think OU, much less A&M, wants to be in a league with Baylor after Wednesday?
You talk about planning an exit strategy.
Or let’s say the threat would work — a far-fetched idea; when did anyone ever get ahead in life threatening David Boren? OK, so OU’s back in, with no A&M, and the league needs a 10th team, which everyone agrees would, best-case scenario, be Brigham Young. BYU has been waffling on its interest in the Big 12. Some in Provo believe independence works better for the Cougars.
Now, those BYU skeptics have to grow, don’t they? Does a Big 12 held together by desperation and threats, still with widespread resent of Texas, sound like something anyone would want to join if they don’t have to? Not even the lure of a possible BCS bid would make that palatable to BYU.
The real goal is to give Baylor time. Time to find/force its way into another BCS conference.
Baylor administrators have had discussions with the Big East and are confident the league would extend an invitation to the Bears if the Big 12 implodes, a source with knowledge of the conversations told Yahoo! Sports on Wednesday night.
“There haven’t been any guarantees,” the source said. “But [Baylor] feels strongly that that’s what would happen.”
Big East officials declined to comment, but it’s certainly not difficult to see why the conference would value Baylor. The Bears are surging in football and men’s basketball and are a perennial contender for the NCAA title in women’s basketball.
Uh, I can think of plenty of reasons why the Big East would have little interest in a private school located in Waco. One that despite being able to force its way into the Big 12, did nothing for the first dozen years in the conference. A program that has been wracked by scandal on the basketball side that it makes Jim Calhoun seem downright saintly.
I would dismiss this as outright bulls**t, but we are talking about the Big East braintrust being involved, so… I am a little worried.
Meanwhile, Texas just sits back. They aren’t part of any of the threats and wrangling. They just lit the fuse. But if you think they are upset over this, well Chip Brown at the Texas Rivals.com site has been both breaking news and doing his level best to give the Texas spin. And boy does he spin it today.
And it would also give the BCS conferences two years decide what they really want to do with college athletics.
Sources say the Pac-12 has indicated it would not expand unless the SEC moved first. So if Texas A&M-to-the-SEC is off the table for two more football seasons, there is a real chance the massive realignment that appeared so imminent just a couple days ago in college athletics could actually be thought out – for better or worse – over time.
All the scenarios about whom the SEC might add to get to 16; about whom the Pac-12 might add and how Texas and the Longhorn Network could or could not fit into a conference structure could be mulled over for weeks and months and not hours and days.
How about a trial balloon to the Big 10?
If the Big Ten came to Texas and said we will take you as a member and you can bring the Longhorn Network – with the only caveat being that Texas could not share in any of the revenue from the Big Ten Network, that could be deliberated and discussed thoughtfully.
And then there is the trolling of the rivals.
For the second year in a row, college athletics is facing massive realignment. This time it’s been, in large part, because the boards of regents at Texas A&M and Oklahoma decided enough was enough. A group of nine people – made up of professionals such as dentists and convenience store owners – were making the decisions about who would be playing in what conference and when.
Meanwhile the Texas regents are saints and world leaders. Every last one of them.
It goes on:
Not a commissioner. Not a group of athletic directors. Not a group of people who spend every day thinking about the business of college athletics. A group of non-paid volunteers who are appointed to a regents board by that state’s governor.
Think about that for a second.
Sometimes these regents move at the behest of a governor’s agenda as opposed to an athletic director’s agenda.
Not a Rick Perry fan in any way, shape, or form. But now we are about to add Perry’s presidential aspirations and the getting the Southern vote to a conspiracy to get Texas A&M into the SEC? To wit:
Nonetheless, they are the ones moving the chess pieces in realignment because there is no one watching over college athletics with EVERYONE’S best interests in mind.
I don’t think the hypocrisy-meter can handle this one. A Texas homer bitching about how schools are looking out for their own interests rather than the best interests of everyone.