Tag:Missouri to the SEC
Posted on: October 6, 2011 10:19 am
 

Report: Not enough SEC votes to add Missouri yet

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

According to a report from the Birmingham News, Missouri may not have the support needed to join the SEC after all.

The News's Jon Solomon reported Thursday morning that the "majority" of conference presidents and ADs would support the Tigers' application to become the league's 14th team, but that that majority "falls just short of the nine votes required" to give Missouri final approval.

According to Solomon's sources, those opposed to Missouri's membership have two points of contention. The first is that the SEC can simply "do better" than the Tigers. The other is that adding a team to the SEC West rather than East would disrupt the league's scheduling and rivalries.

The debate has reportedly led to a split between Auburn and Alabama, with the Crimson Tide opposed to Missouri's application and their in-state rivals in favor. Adding Missouri would almost certainly shift Auburn to the East division, restoring the Tigers' traditional annual rivalries with Tennessee and Florida, but potentially scuttling the Tide's yearly "Third Saturday in October" grudge match with the Volunteers. (With only one annual "cross-division" game on the schedule, Alabama couldn't play both Tennessee and Auburn with both in the East, at least not without a nine-game conference schedule.)

As noted by Solomon, Missouri's application won't be helped by an anonymous official telling the Associated Press Wednesday that the SEC would be the Tigers' second choice after the Big Ten. The public admission that Missouri might look elsewhere if the Big Ten asked them to surely won't sit well with a league that -- surely -- can find other partners that would be 100 percent committed.

So a move that looked like all but certain when the Mizzou Board of Curators voted to explore their options Tuesday now has another clear, visible hurdle in front of it. (At minimum, the SEC's plans for a 13-team 2012 season look that much closer to being set in stone.) The guess here remains that in the end, the allure of Missouri's Kansas City/St. Louis television markets will be too much for Mike Slive and the SEC to ignore (especially with the league angling for a new TV contract), and that the SEC's stability and overflowing coffers will be too much for even the Big Ten-focused Missouri officials to turn down.

But at the very least, Mizzou-to-the-SEC appears to be a deal that isn't done just yet.

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Posted on: September 20, 2011 2:32 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2011 3:40 pm
 

Report: Mizzou has SEC offer pending B12 breakup

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

If the version of events provided by a booster who has spoken to the Kansas City Star is accurate, Missouri is likely on its way towards becoming the SEC's 14th school.

According to the Star, that booster has spoken directly to a Mizzou official who has told him (or her) that the SEC "has an offer on the table for Missouri to join its league." That offer would be accepted as soon as the breakup of the Big 12 is finally made official--a fate that as Big 12 Board of Directors chairman, Missouri chancellor Brady Deaton has been working to avoid.

After yesterday's vote by the Oklahoma and Texas Boards of regents to allow their presidents to make their schools' final decisions on conference afficilation -- a move widely seen as a precursor to one or both schools jumping ship for the Pac-12, and effectively dissolving the Big 12 -- it seems highly likely that despite Deaton's efforts, that breakup is at hand.

According to the Star report, the SEC approached Missouri in 2010 but was rebuffed as the Tigers pledged their allegiance to the Big 12 and the Big Ten passed on issuing Mizzou an invitation.

However, SEC associate commissioner Charles Bloom stated Tuesday that no invitation -- official or otherwise -- has been issued to Missouri or any other school, this year or last. "The SEC has not extended an invitation to any school beyond Texas A&M since it extended invitations to Arkansas and South Carolina," Bloom said.

Of course, we're not sure if we'd take that at face value; the legal snafus already surrounding A&M's attempted departure show how carefully the SEC will tread whenever legal interference in the Big 12's contracts might be an issue.

If admitted to the SEC, Missouri would potentially force a realignment of the SEC's two divisions, with eight "West" teams and only six "East" teams. The most popular realignment scenario involves shifting Auburn to the East, a move Auburn president Jay Gogue has already said he would not oppose.
 
 
 
 
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