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Tag:Big 12 expansion
Posted on: October 24, 2011 6:33 pm
 

PIC: Texas A&M vandals tag Texas campus

Posted by Chip Patterson

The bad blood between Texas and Texas A&M will not end with the Aggies' departure from the Big 12 to the SEC. While the challenge of continuing the on-field rivalry is in the hands of university administrators, the off-field war will likely wage well into the future. The most recent act of vandalism was likely the work of Aggies, assumed by the giant Texas A&M logo spray painted on Texas' campus.

The photo below marks the walkway in front of the Applied Computational Engineering and Sciences building, one of several areas that were affected by vandalism either Friday night or Saturday morning. "GiG em Aggies" was also spray painted along a bridge connecting the Winship Drama Building to San Jacinto Boulevard, in addition to other phrases and images on the Longhorns' campus.

(Image credit: The Daily Texan)



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Posted on: October 9, 2011 12:35 pm
Edited on: October 9, 2011 6:16 pm
 

Air Force AD: Interest 'high' in Big East

Posted by Chip Patterson

Following the news of TCU's plans to accept an invitation to join the Big 12, the presidents of the remaining Big East schools participated in a conference call Friday morning to discuss the league's future. Contrary to some reports no official decisions or announcements came from the meeting, but all signs point to the conference extending invitations to membership in the near future.

One of the schools frequently listed as a target for football is Air Force. CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy reported that the conference was targeting Navy and Air Force before Syracuse and Pittsburgh bolted for the ACC. Even with the league now looking at only six football programs moving forward, Air Force athletic director Hans Mueh is still interested in the idea of joining the Big East.

"Our interest is high in the Big East. That's fair to say," Mueh told The Denver Post on Saturday. "This stuff is moving fast."

Mueh pointed out that his ideal scenario involves Air Force, Navy and Army all making the move to participating in the Big East for football, but there were no certainties in the discussions. The Falcons were listed by some as a possible target for Big 12 expansion after Texas and Oklahoma announced their intentions to stay in the league. Mueh confirmed on Saturday the school was approached by the Big 12, to which the AD said "no thanks."

"We were approached by the Big 12, and I told them we're not a good fit for that conference. In the Big 12, geography makes sense, the economics make sense, but the recruiting makes no sense for us. I can't recruit against Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State," Mueh explained.

"That's why I turned down the Big 12. I can't do that to my kids, because they'll get beat up. I'd love the extra $12 million or whatever it would be per year from the TV money. And I know how I'd spend the money. I'd build a new soccer stadium, and I'd build a new baseball facility, all in one year. But I can't do that."

Interesting take from the Air Force AD. He also said the Big East "absolutely" wants Army. But there are strong sentiments within the Army community that making the move to Big East conference play may be detrimental to the program in similar ways the Falcons were concerned about the Big East.

Action is expected from the league in the coming weeks regarding football expansion. In addition to the service academies, East Carolina, Central Florida, and Temple have been listed as candidates. The key for the league will be to find a program that fits with the other schools, while still maintaining the football success necessary to retain their automatic bid to the Bowl Championship Series.

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Posted on: October 6, 2011 3:17 pm
Edited on: October 6, 2011 3:46 pm
 

Big 12 agrees to six-year grant of TV rights

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Missouri or no Missouri, the Big 12 isn't going anywhere.

That's the message sent by the league's Thursday afternoon announcement that its members have agreed to a equal-revenue sharing plan and a six-year "formal grant of television rights." The revenue distribution plan "becomes effective upon the formal assignment of rights by all institutions."

That assignment of rights isn't legally binding just yet--interim commissioner Chuck Neinas has been "authorized by the Board to immediately distribute legal documents for institutional execution." But with the grant of rights part of a "joint resolution" on the part of Texas and Oklahoma (who have each already publicly endorsed the conference's invitation to TCU), it seems unthinkable that either would back out of the arrangement now, or that any of the six other non-Missouri Big 12 schools wouldn't follow their lead.

To drive that point home, the adoption of the grant of rights and revenue plan was passed with an 8-0 unanimous vote by the Big 12 Board of Directors. As with the vote to issue TCU's invitation, however, Missouri abstained--another sign of the current rift between the conference and the Tigers.

The grant of rights is understood to gives the Big 12 control over any and all Tier 1 and Tier 2 television revenues generated by the schools which sign the agreement, in effect making them worthless from a TV perspective to any other conference that might wish to add them.

However, the proposal also addresses issues with the league's "third-tier" rights, which concern the much-discussed Longhorn Network and appears to include several concessions on Texas's part. According to the league's statement:
Conference bylaws will reflect that no member institution branded outlet will show high school games or highlights, noting that it is permissible pursuant to NCAA interpretation to use scores, standings and statistics of high school games; and, that additional games beyond the one member institution retained football game for telecast purposes must be approved by both institutions and both Conference telecast partners.
In other words, no filmed high school content, and any Big 12 games that appear on the LHN must have the approval of all parties involved.

“Today’s Big 12 meeting was the most positive conference meeting that we have had over the last two to three years," said Oklahoma president David Boren in a statement. "The reforms made and actions taken are a win for the entire conference.  The actions taken at the meeting will help to strengthen the conference and increase its stability.  Commissioner Chuck Neinas deserves great credit for his leadership in bringing this agreement together.  I also appreciate the close partnership between OU and OSU in working for meaningful reforms.  All of the actions taken are important and I was especially pleased that the conference will have its own bylaws to make sure that institutional branded networks will be prohibited from showing high school athletes in game or in highlight format in a way that could give any conference member a recruiting advantage.”

It might not be exactly what Texas wanted with the LHN, and the Big 12, period, may not be what the Sooners had in mind during their flirtation with the Pac-12. But with both schools now all-but locked in legal matrimony for the next six years and TCU set to officially come aboard any day now, they do have something both sides have been craving all along: conference stability.

Posted on: September 7, 2011 4:42 pm
 

Arkansas AD Long: Big 12 expressed interest

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Among the dozens (hundreds?) of rumors flying around during the last few weeks of expansion fever was that the Big 12 was trying to lure Arkansas away from the SEC, promising them the renewal of their traditional rivalries with Texas and other old Southwest Conference foes.

Of course, since the very concept of the Hogs abandoning the fabulously wealthy and highly stable SEC for the Big 12's offers of less money and more uncertainty is laughable, those rumors didn't get too far. So maybe it comes as something of a surprise that according to Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long, the Big 12 did in fact reach out to gauge the Razorbacks' interest.

Naturally, Long said the "conversation" between his institution and the Big 12 "didn't go far":
“I think that our program is such that there are a number of conferences that would love to add us as a member,” Long said. “But we’re strongly committed to the SEC. I’d be surprised if we weren’t reached out to by other conferences about joining them. That happened. It didn’t surprise me. But, again, we’re committed to the SEC. It’s the strongest conference in the country and is only going to get stronger.”
On the one hand, we can't fault the Big 12 just for asking if Arkansas might have had some measure of interest. But on the other, the last few days have made it clear that the Big 12 has much more on its plate than trying to get the old SWC band back together ... and that maybe keeping teams like Oklahoma from potentially bolting to the Pac-12 should have been a little higher up the priority list.

Posted on: September 1, 2011 12:14 pm
Edited on: September 2, 2011 1:40 pm
 

PODCAST: Doddcast Season Preview

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

What's even better than a podcast? A Doddcast, i.e., senior college football writer Dennis Dodd sitting down with our Adam Aizer to talk Big 12 expansion, LSU-Oregon, preseason conference picks, and our eventual 2011 national champion.

Listen below, download the mp3, or listen while you browse with our popout player. You can subscribe to the College Football Podcast on iTunes by clicking here. Enjoy:




Posted on: September 1, 2011 11:42 am
 

Report: BYU in discussions with Big 12

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Wednesday, BYU officials released a statement condemning conference expansion "conjecture" involving the Cougars as a "distraction" its football program didn't need. We're going to humbly suggest, however, that the Cougars simply get used to it.

Because after this report from the Salt Lake Tribune, it's safe to say that conjecture is only getting started. According to the Tribune, BYU officials and representatives from the Big 12 have already met for discussions regarding "what conditions and assurances [BYU] would need to make the jump" to the soon-to-be Texas A&M-free conference.

Among those "conditions" would be how the Big 12 might coexist with BYU's existing television network, BYUtv, not to mention the rest of BYU's athletics programs; currently, the Cougars are scheduled to join the West Coast Conference in sports other than football beginning with the 2011-2012 athletics season. The Tribune reported that "some of the discussions involve the possibility of BYU joining the Big 12 for football only."

Also reportedly offering "input" to the talks? Representatives from Notre Dame, BYU's "partner" in independence who have an six-year football series scheduled with the Cougars. ESPN's football contract with BYU was also a point of discussion.

All of this makes yesterday's statement seem even more misleading. Before, its omission of any actual denials regarding the Cougars' conference affiliation might have simply been an oversight. But now, it's obvious those omissions were intentional; the rumors linking BYU to the Big 12 have legs, and thickly-built legs at that.

It's still too soon to say BYU-to-the-Big 12 is a done deal, or even likely; with rumors also abundant that a bundle of Pac-12 invitations will have the Big 12 dissolved by Halloween, BYU may not wind up with anywhere to make the jump to. But as far as the Big 12's survival goes, sitting down at the table with a name-brand program like BYU isn't a bad first step at all.
Posted on: August 31, 2011 7:37 pm
 

BYU issues statement on expansion "distraction"

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

With an open spot (or possibly spots, plural) now available in the Big 12, rumors have begun flying as to what team (or teams) might fill it (or them). One of the teams frequently mentioned is BYU, whose long tradition of football success, devoted following, and current independence could make it an interesting fit.

In response to that "speculation," BYU issued the following statement Wednesday afternoon:
There is much speculation right now regarding conference affiliation that seems to change by the hour. Commenting on such conjecture is not productive and creates a distraction for our program. As we enter the 2011-12 athletic season, BYU is focused on the opportunities ahead. We are excited about our relationship with ESPN as a football independent and our [other sports'] affiliation with the West Coast Conference.
Of course, by releasing the statement, BYU has confirmed that such speculation exists and arguably creates a greater "distraction" than simply not issuing any statement at all. (Would we be writing this post if the Cougar administration had said nothing at all? No.) That the statement notably declines to say "we will not be joining the Big 12 or any other conference" or  "BYU will remain an independent" or something along those lines will likely only fuel the rumor mill's fire, too.

We sympathize with schools (like Virginia Tech, whose spokesman angrily commented on SEC-centric rumors earlier Wednesday) caught up in the maelstrom of expansion talk, just as their 2011 football seasons are ready to get underway. Their frustration is understandable. But in this case, expressing that frustration may end up doing more "distraction" harm than good.

Posted on: August 26, 2011 2:27 am
Edited on: August 26, 2011 10:12 am
 

Dan Beebe responds to Texas A&M statement

Posted by Adam Jacobi

In the latest chapter in the ongoing flirtations between Texas A&M and the SEC, Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe (pictured at right) has responded to Texas A&M's Thursday announcement that the Aggies were exploring a switch in conferences.

First, the statement in full, from the conference offices:

The letter received today from Texas A&M president R. Bowen Loftin will be addressed by the Big 12 Conference Board of Directors. It remains our strong desire for Texas A&M to continue as a member of the Big 12 and we are working toward that end. However, if it is decided otherwise, the Conference is poised to move aggressively with options.

Beebe should be careful here, as the only high-level unaffiliated football programs out there are Notre Dame and BYU (no offense, Army or Navy), and saying the conference is "poised to move aggressively" implies that there's a willing candidate already in Beebe's mind. Yes, that almost certainly could mean SMU, who's practically begging for a BCS invite, but if the Big 12 adds Houston (as has allegedly been mentioned by the conference as a possibility before), the Conference USA brass might have the grounds to suggest that the Big 12 was admitting to interfering with Conference USA business, and that could mean the threat of legal action.

That said, it could also mean something much less litigious, like adding BYU and/or Notre Dame in football only, and either gently phasing in the other sports (as both schools have full pre-existing conference affiliations outside of football) or leaving it a football-only arrangement entirely. 

Not only that, there are probably plenty of expansion candidates off the metaphorical radar with which the Big 12 has had some sort of contact, and maybe Beebe has the sense that they're privately amenable to a conference change. Again, we're talking about off the radar, so it would be reckless to speculate (see: flat-out guess) on possible schools, but Beebe would be derelict in his duty as a conference commissioner if he didn't have a contingency plan for any type of expansion -- especially one based on how willing the other schools would be to move to the Big 12.

We'll say this, though: Texas A&M is still not even an applicant (much less a member or invitee) of the SEC yet. That's likely to change, but it hasn't yet. So if Dan Beebe can wrangle four of his conference members away from a potential Pac-16 in 2010, then somehow brink Texas A&M back from the bring of "SECession," he's got to be the biggest miracle worker among conference commissioners. Alas for Beebe, miracles are miracles for a reason, and this one's probably not going to happen.


 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com