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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Could Mountain West merger save Big 12?

The Big 12 and SEC will have a new football game for its league champions beginning in 2014.

The Big 12 and SEC will have a new football game for its league champions beginning in 2014.

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With each day that passes it appears as if the Big 12 Conference moves one step closer to extinction.

However, a scenario emerged Saturday that might go a long way toward saving the conference.

An ESPN.com report early Saturday morning quoted Mountain West Conference commissioner Craig Thompson as saying that the MWC was frothing at the mouth to scoop up whatever Big 12 schools might remain should Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State head to the Pac-10, as expected.

Sources within the Mountain West, however, told the Journal-World late Saturday night that the exact opposite actually could happen. Instead of the MWC taking the Big 12’s castaways — Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Iowa State and Baylor — the Big 12 could absorb all 10 members of the Mountain West, including newly acquired Boise State, and move forward as a revamped Big 12.

“That has some merit because it would allow the remaining Big 12 schools to protect things like their NCAA Tournament basketball shares and the automatic qualifying bid to the BCS,” the source said. “If that’s how this goes down, I know that both sides are going to be very sensitive to how that part’s handled so that it doesn’t jeopardize the BCS bid or any of the basketball shares that those schools have earned.”

That alone, along with the other advantages that would come with the Big 12’s leftovers sticking together, such as geography, friendly time zones and tradition, could be enough to make the offer appealing to those schools that remain. One other potential benefit of staying with the league and adding the MWC schools would be the fact that the Big 12 — whatever it would be called from here on out — would be around to collect the departure penalty payouts from the schools that leave.

As for the Mountain West schools, which, like the Big 12, have been together barely more than a decade, the idea of leaving the MWC behind would not be tough to swallow, the source said.

“With the opportunity to become a BCS conference, nearly immediately, and the fact that this conference, which has been on a united front throughout this whole thing, would remain united, I think the sentimentality carries very little weight,” the source said. “I think in a lot of ways it’s a best-case scenario for everyone involved.”

The kicker, of course, is that, as of now, the Big 12 still has 10 teams in it, with only Colorado and Nebraska out the door for certain. That could all change as soon as Tuesday, when four Big 12 south schools reportedly will announce their defection to the Pac-10.

Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott and deputy commissioner Kevin Weiberg visited with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State officials in person Saturday, ostensibly with invitations to join the league. Up next is a trip to Texas A&M, Texas and Texas Tech today. An OU press release described Saturday’s meeting with president David Boren and AD Joe Castiglione as “very cordial and informative. It would not be appropriate to comment further on the content of the meeting at this time. There will be a special meeting of OU’s board of regents Wednesday to weigh possible conference options available to the university.”

The press release had most pundits 100 percent convinced OU is Pac-10 bound.

The wildcard here remains Texas A&M. The Aggies originally were in the proposal outlined by the Pac-10, however, A&M has since become torn over whether to join its Big 12 brothers in heading west or set out on its own into the SEC. NBCsports.com reported Saturday there were enough votes of A&M regents to approve a move to the SEC.

There are conflicting reports whether the SEC would want A&M and ESPN reported Saturday that the league was not interested in KU, though some KU officials have been intrigued by the possibility of joining that league.

There’s also been talk of KU, K-State, Missouri and Iowa State joining the Big East but that has yet to build up much steam nationally.

Should A&M head to the SEC, that would leave Kansas in an interesting position of whether to pursue becoming the 16th school in the Pac-10 or to stick with the potential Big 12/Mountain West merger that seems to be gaining momentum.

A source confirmed to the Journal-World reports that officials from KU, K-State, Missouri, Iowa State and Baylor met via teleconference on Saturday to discuss the possibility of remaining with the Big 12 via merging with the Mountain West. The athletic directors may meet Monday to ask questions of TV officials about possible contracts and what they would be worth for such a league.

Although the losses of Texas and Oklahoma would be tough to stomach, taking on the Mountain West schools could actually expand the markets the Big 12 reaches, especially if the Big 12’s five and the MWC’s 10 went after Houston or SMU, as the source indicated they would, as the 16th team in the revamped Big 12.

That, in effect, would be creating the very thing that current Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe has warned against throughout the entire realignment process. It would be interesting to watch if, with his conference saved, Beebe would be willing to oversee one of the 16-team power conferences he’s lobbied against in recent weeks.

“I think it’s something that we, as a community of leaders, better be very careful about,” Beebe said. “I think if we come to a day where there are four 16-member conferences and there’s a clear departure of those conferences from the rest of the institutions in higher education and athletics, that it’s going to be a sad day and it’s going to be very difficult to not have a lot more intervention and legal issues attached to those institutions.”

Comments

jaybate 3 years, 10 months ago

Merging, or moving to the Mountain West is the worst path.

KU should take one of two paths.

  1. Expand the Big 12 east and south no matter how many teams are lost.

  2. Or merge the northern division of the old B12 into the Big East, or ACC, or both.

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jaybate 3 years, 10 months ago

Merging, or moving to the Mountain West is the worst path.

KU must do take one of two paths.

  1. Expand the Big 12 east and south no matter how many teams are lost.

  2. Or merge the northern division of the old B12 into the Big East, or ACC.

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sdtosf 3 years, 10 months ago

SDSU Rocks! 65,000 stadium. Great for conference tourney games when it is freezing in Kansas! Great baseball team with Tony Gwynn as head coach and Steven Strasburg striking out 23 Utah batters in one game. Hoops team ranked top 25 in preseason ESPN poll. Best looking girls in the conference. (Site took dowm my Mission Beach video) Access to Southern California recruiting

3 Party school in the nation (Playboy)

Top school in CSU system. (Largest university system in the world)

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sdtosf 3 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Martin Rosenblum 3 years, 10 months ago

How about this.......

All conferences are dissolved.

AD's from every D1 school enter an arm-wrestling contest where the final 8 schools get to pick the teams that will be aligned with them in brand new conferences.

The process of selecting those teams will be by those 8 AD's picking names randomly out of a bowl shaped like half of a football helmet and half of a basketball.

The 8 new conferences will form divisions within their teams.

Only teams within each 8 conferences will be allowed to play each other in each sport during a regular season.

At the end of the regular season, which will be vastly different than the status quo, there will be a conference champion who will represent their conference.

Playoffs/postseason tournaments will be held that will pit the 8 conference winners against each other for the eventual national championship.

Every 10 years, a new arm-wrestling contest will be held to re-align the entire country in order to prevent dominance in any one area of athletics and to alllow for AD's to be more accountable for the future of their schools, even though it is by their personal success and physical prowess. After all, aren't these folks "Athletic Directors"?

The NCAA is considering my plan as we speak!

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Nick Cole 3 years, 10 months ago

I am sick of people talking about adding these MWC and CUSA teams. They are not teams we should be in a conference with. Try and spin it any way you want to, but they just don't compare to KU, athletically or academically.

First off, KU is one of about 60 schools with the prestigious AAU accreditation. How many of these MWC/CUSA schools have this accreditation? One that I could find (Rice from CUSA). We could be potentially merging with these schools who have much lower academic standards than our current member institutions (which would be pathetic).

And as for athletics, don't think for one second this merger would benefit KU. These MWC schools would look better and attract more recruits compared to what they get now, while KU, KSU, mu, ISU and Baylor would not be getting the kinds of recruits we're used to (especially KU basketball-wise). Also pathetic.

This, in my opinion, should not even be considered by KU officials. Yeah, keeping our rivalries alive would be nice and all, but not at the expense of our prestige (and this is not arrogance talking, its fact). I'm sorry, but if this happens, I will be very disappointed in KU, Grey-Little, and Sweet Lew. No offense to these MWC and CUSA schools, but KU is better than that. Picture this: KU vs. San Diego State University for the Big XII/MWC championship. Or picture this: KU vs. UCLA/USC/Oregon/Stanford/UCONN/Syracuse/Duke/UNC/Kentucky/Tennessee/Vandy/Notre Dame/Any ACC or Big East or Pac-1X team for the insert conference championship. Which sounds better to you? Personally, KU and these MWC/CUSA teams don't even belong in the same sentence. Not even close. I beg you media, please let this notion go. Quit talking about it. The more you talk about it, the more steam it picks up. How about the LJW talks more about the meeting between KU officials and Big East officials in Lawrence the other day? Put some steam behind that rumor. Put us in the ACC. The Pac-1X. The SEC. Heck, the Big Ten. Anything but this B.S. you are talking about.

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Andy Tweedy 3 years, 10 months ago

Rivals just reported something about the PAC-10 brass being in KC, which I assume indicates they are talking to KU. AGH!!! Anybody got a Rivals account to read the whole story. I hate feeling like I've been sucked into this soap opera, but I am obsessed with where we will end up. I wish I could just let it play out, but that isn't going to happen!!!

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bigredmachine 3 years, 10 months ago

All this conference realignment talk ignores several key facts. These are college students who have attend classes, etc.. How can they do that if they are flying from KC to Calif,. Oregon, etc.? FB and Bball might be o.k., but what about all the other sports? Best remaining scenarios for the five remaining B12 schools is probably to stay together and add schools. Offer some from Big East. or offer some from MW, CUSA, etc.. Of the other alternatives, the SEC would be best for MU, KU, but if the SEC wants 16, I can see that KSU and ISU don't fit. If AtM goes, then only one more is needed. What ever happened to tradition, scholastic honor, regional rivalries, etc.?

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Chris Bailey 3 years, 10 months ago

I hate to be on the bandwagon for us joining the PAC-10 that being my first choice. I am also in favor of the MWC joining the remaining big-12 teams and making what would be a fairly good conference. I mean lets face it TCU and Boise with BYU and Utah that added with the remaining big12 schools makes for a decent football conference that should get better as time goes on with recruiting once those schools are in a BCS conference. Granted the basketball isn't the best but there are a few schools that are good. Lets face it aside from Missouri and Texas the big12 hasn't been a juggernaut in basketball. Yes they have decent teams. Colorado, Nebraska, Texas Tech, (Texas A&M and Baylor until recently), haven't been good. This could be a good thing. I agree that moving to the Pac-10 is our best option but if we want to keep the cats and tigers with us we have little choice but to merge with the MWC. We would need to play a rough non-conference schedule but we would keep our BCS status. And since this was all about football and revenue I think it's a good idea. That's only my opinion but I am pro-football and Turner Gill too. I want to see our school as a football and basketball power!

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John Randall 3 years, 10 months ago

I haven't read all the way through, but each time the Conference Commissioner is mentioned, I expect to see Lew Perkins' name bandied about. Like him or not, the man is a mover and a shaker of the caliber a revamped conference would need in the very worst way.

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Randy Bombardier 3 years, 10 months ago

AZalum, agree with you that this is being driven by tv markets makes me sick. What makes it so bad is bad information. Why assume that because team X is located in State Y that it has a following. For instance, does Rutgers really have a football following at all? How well do they travel? Why are they not looking at actual Neilsen ratings when a team is playing. I have read in an article or two that Missouri brings the KC market. Really? I care to differ. KU owns that market. I also think that the Chiefs organization and anyone associated with Arrowhead better sit up and start making waves if they ever want to see conference games there again, let alone the Conference Championship game.

That being said, KU would do well in the Big East. Its basketball program would generate even more money and I think the Hawks need to start proclaiming and acting like they are worth something and demand their own network. If Texas can demand it for their football program which is not even as accomplished as OU, surely we can demand it for our Basketball program. I hope that someone grows some and we can tell texas, don't let the door hit you in the backside. The more I think about their cheeky demands the more I bristle and think we should make overtures to NU, A&M and TTech to stay and Texas to leave. Get the h$%% out of Dodge, Cowboy!

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REED2027 3 years, 10 months ago

I'm liking the idea of merging with the Big East IF the Big 12 gets knocked down to 5 come Tuesday. The Big East makes for a much better association:

The BE schools are tradition rich, very strong in basketball first, decent in football second with a couple that are good, and has academic prestige (Gtown, ND, Villanova). It is also an area HCBS has been recruiting very successfully. Add Memphis to make it 22.

Our five + Louisville, Memphis, ND, Marquette, DePaul and Cincy would be the West division and the rest the East. Only one time zone change too.

no interest whatsoever in the MWC from any perspective. Plus, which game would you rather watch in January when KU isn't playing... Louisville v Memphis or Boise State v UNLV? I would rather mow the lawn, change diapers and drink natty light than watch any of the MWC teams when not playing KU.

And if the Big 12 survives, great. Still add Memphis and one of the other CUSA teams.

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Lance Hobson 3 years, 10 months ago

I agree, we shouldn't play Nebraska or CU this year. At least not on the road.

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4jhawks4ku 3 years, 10 months ago

And cut Nebraska out of the big twelve schedules right now along with Colorado. Let them find their own games for this year.

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Lance Hobson 3 years, 10 months ago

I agree with Jaybate. I've always liked the MWC but that doesn't mean they are in our league, so to speak. This would be a big step down for us, no matter what you call it. We are a basketball school and playing Air Force and Boise State is no good for us.

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4jhawks4ku 3 years, 10 months ago

Lew Perkins should head the new big 12-16.

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LogicMan 3 years, 10 months ago

Does anyone know if schools keep their Big 12 voting rights after announcing that they are leaving the conference?

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okiedave 3 years, 10 months ago

I like the merger of the Mtn. West and the Bix XII.

Ft. Collins, Colo. (Colo. St.) would be easy drive great weekend visits as would Colo. Springs (Air Force). The Mtn. West schools are progressing athletically. Colo. St. regularly beats up on Colorado. BYU is regularly in the top 20 and often in the top 10. I could easily see this as a top power conference in 5 to 10 years. Kansas would continue to dominate in Basketball and Missouri and Kansas would be contenders for the conference championship most years. We keep our rivals KSU and MU. I like it.

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Martin Rosenblum 3 years, 10 months ago

Know what is really a shame here?

The Joe-College store owner would have been able to have made a fortune when the smoke cleared from all of this. Imagine the endless possibilities for t-shirts!

Now that Lew is leaving, maybe Joe-College could reincarnate and morph into a new retail entity.

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bocktar 3 years, 10 months ago

Let's go for the gold!

Beebee's New Plan Plus Memphis, Arkansas, and Notre Dame. Show ISU the door. If we're willing to allow UT to build/maintain its own TV network, why not ND? It'll give SEC room to help dismantle Big East. It'll fire a big fat shot across the Big 10 to STFU w/r/t Big XII members.

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1stnamemistermiddlenameperiod 3 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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lhohman3 3 years, 10 months ago

If KU football wants to join up w' MWC, fine, but do it alone. I suggest if the PAC 10 merger does not happen; keep the b-ball team independent from football program & let KU-b-ball go to the best situation, separately…..KU basketball could hypothetically go alone as an independent (Like ND Football) – NBC/ESPN/ABC/CBS would sign up instantly for exclusive rights to broadcast all of its games, nationally. Meanwhile, KU football couldn’t get my 67 year old dad to record its game for his personal home movie collection….. I’m not saying it’s the “best” option – but it is just one out of countless examples of how KU basketball could still thrive....And in the end, if it comes down to saving only KU basketball, then that is exactly what KU Athletics should do; because if we are going to be lead by our football program to make this decision, it will effectively ruin both sports.

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sjwilson 3 years, 10 months ago

Okay for football. Step down for basketball. Massive step down for academics (and there's money and prestige at play here too, folks).

This should be a last resort. If getting into the Big 10 or Pac 10 is a possibility (and who knows?) we should pursue those first. Or a re-constituted, viable Big East. We would not be a cultural fit for the SEC, nor is it to our academic standards (only Vandy and Florida are AAU schools). Football may be driving this train, but our interests are not just with football, but with the fit realignment gives us in basketball and academics.

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bjdku 3 years, 10 months ago

I hate this and I cannot wait until another front page story displaces it. MWC->Big 12 is desperate and ridiculous.

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Jack Wilson 3 years, 10 months ago

One major consideration is that Big East football is dead. Everyone knows the Big Ten is after Syracuse and Rutgers.

Three big adds to the Big 12 .. Louisville and Cincinnati from the Big East, and Memphis from C-USA.

I really think in any merger deal, adding those three would keep great credibility, maintain what is important to KU most .. basketball schedule credibility. That will maintain our recruiting, and that is all that matters.

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dmg97102 3 years, 10 months ago

FedEx's CEO is rumored to be willing to pay a conference $10mil per year for 10 years for Memphis to join a BCS conference. They're not sponsoring the Orange Bowl anymore, and he has some money to burn, and his son is the QB for Memphis. No way the SEC is going to take Memphis and make Calipari and Kenthuggy travel there once a year, because UK is the only big ticket for SEC b-ball. If Big 12/MWC conference had KU, K-State, Memphis, Baylor, New Mexico, then basketball would have 4-5 tourney teams guaranteed each year. BYU was no slouch last year, and Houston's starting to regain some prominence. Plus, the Big East likely dissolves soon, and Marquette (Milwaukee), Louisville, Cincinnati and Depaul (Chicago) might need places to land as well. There's plenty of choices for basketball to go around soon, and we'll play in Chicago/Milwaukee, Houston, Dallas/Ft Worth, Salt Lake, Vegas, California markets for recruiting

The bad thing is, if the Big 10, Pac 10, ACC, and SEC see a 5th 16 team superconference forming (the Big 12/MWC merger), then are they going to poach some teams to prevent it? The Pac 10 thinks they're going to get 2 BCS bids if they add the South teams, but if the Big 12 keeps it's BCS bid, then they won't get that. That would leave 16 teams vying for 1 BCS bid in the Pac. To keep that from happening, they're going to try to destroy the Big 12/MWC merger. That means taking Utah or us (Probably us, because Stanford is actually pushing hard for us right now over Texas Tech)

The other thing you have to worry about is MU's intentions. Nobody should trust MU, because they're still holding out hope the Big 10 offers them a spot once the dominoes start falling--according to a few MU alums I've talked to. If this new Big 12/MWC conference gets wings, they should definitely make the buy out for a school to leave something like $50 million, that the conference that steals them would have to pay (and if the conference that steals them doesn't agree to pay the buyout, then it would be up to the school).

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1stnamemistermiddlenameperiod 3 years, 10 months ago

Understanding that my two cents means absolutely nothing, strangely, I feel compelled to share it anyway. I have an idea for a new conference.

Keep: Baylor, ISU, KSU, KU, MU*, OU, and OSU

Fight like hell to keep the state of Oklahoma. OU, (IMO) is a much bigger loss to the league than Texas. OU has done much more with less. OU is the school that has really dominated the Big XII in football and has a budding superstar as a basketball coach. Oklahoma State, the Wisconsin of the Big XII (or perhaps WI is the OSU of the big ten), OSU is always respectable in bball and football, even if their record doesn't indicate it.

Add: HOUSTON: Sleeping giant in basketball; burgeoning power in football LOUISVILLE: On-again-off-again football relevance; Historically relevant in bball; Has expressed interest in being apart of a BCS conference MEMPHIS: Fedex financed; Wants into a BCS conference; Power player in bball recruiting; recent success (albeit modest) in football, although they need to improve their facilities.

Cut ties with: Texas: The object of power is power. Texas' presence is clearly a detriment to the rest of the league. Texas A&M: A&M is to UT what Jersey is to New York. NY takes from Jersey and Jersey just takes it. No chance of prying A&M tongue from the UT hind parts, so let them walk. Texas Tech: Tech won't be the same without Leach. They may be better, but more than two TX schools is clearly a recipe for disaster.

Consider one or two of the following: Excommunicate MU: MU's infidelity, dignifying the big ten's overtures rather than rebuffing them out right, gave credence to the notion that the Big XII was for sale. Now that they realize that they've been USED, rub salt in their wounds by banishing them to The Valley.
Add Tulsa: Respectable in Bball; work in progress in football Add TCU: If you have to have another Texas school, why not TCU. An automatic BCS berth may be all TCU needs to hang on to the coaching that's brought them to national prominence. Add SMU: If you have to have another Texas school, why not SMU. They have a humongous budget and they are hell-bent on returning to prominence. Add New Mexico: B-ball teams wins 30 games as soon as JR Giddens takes off (Wow!). That's another story though. Population shifts favor considering NM.

Ultimately, this conference's theme would be potential. There's a good mix of power players and up-and-comers in both basketball and football.

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lhohman3 3 years, 10 months ago

1977kufan,

That's fine. Coach Self would go to OSU or he goes to NBA.

Bigger issue at stake: Either way, he's gone very soon if this MWC/Big 12 merger happens. And last I read, Izzo is still considering Cavs. If he wasn't interested in the Cavs he wouldn't make statements like this.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=5271586

Matter of fact: I'm actually thinking if Izzo turns down Cavs job & Lebron comes back to Cavs & Big 12/MWC happens, Self may bolt for the Cavs.

Nevertheless, if Izzo goes -- MSU would go after Bill very hard is all I'm suggesting, as would a bunch of other schools/NBA teams & I think he would quickly start considering every option if MWC/Big 12 merger happens -- which would go down as potentially the single worst merger since AOL/Time Warner & the single worst idea since those idiots invented New Coke.

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jhokfan 3 years, 10 months ago

Join the MWC and it's only a matter of time before it gets raided. Hold out for a BCS conference. It will happen. Patience.

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Andrew Moore 3 years, 10 months ago

I think that if there is a mass exodus the new conference would be

Kansas, KSU, MU,ISU,Baylor + Mountain West +memphis/houston

16 teams total

Continue to fly the big 12 flag so that the other schools have to pay out the penalty for leaving the conference and then we use that money to add members. I personally would like to see us pluck schools like boise, tcu, utah, byu, houston, new mexico and memphis and stick with only twelve schools. I think that the 16 team deal is more likely though. This should also help us maintain BCS status because KU, Utah, TCU, and Boise have all recently been in and won BCS bowls

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Osagehawk 3 years, 10 months ago

With all this hashing about developing a conference with KU involved, I haven't seen much said about the money issue. I don't see how we can continue to compete without BCS and TV money. Haven't most of you seen the difference among the Big 12, SEC, Big 10, and MWC money. Just the SEC ($200M), Big 12 ($139M), and the MWC ($24M), would make an incredible difference. I would think we would have to cut drastically in many sports just to survive, let alone prosper. I can't believe anyone would suggest becoming independent. We have no national following, therefore no TV money.

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jchief40 3 years, 10 months ago

New development:

Three different sources at Big 12 South schools being targeted by the Pac-10 told Orangebloods.com Sunday morning that Dan Beebe's attempts to secure a new TV deal on par with the SEC's $17 million/school payout for the 10 remaining schools in the Big 12 is in play.

http://texas.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=1093803

p>Orangebloods.com
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Scott Smetana 3 years, 10 months ago

You MWC fans are silly. Do you even know the teams? Air Force, Colorado St., and Wyoming would have troubles beating Olathe East in Football or Basketball. Winning the league in Basketball means nothing and in football would mean little more.

  1. Keep Big 12 Alive, Add Memphis and TCU and ?
  2. Pac 16 or 20
  3. SEC

Anything else is a HUGE disappointment. period.

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William Weissbeck 3 years, 10 months ago

To quote the indicted former Illinois governor, "this thing is gold, we aren't going to give it away for nothing." We have the BCS slot, we need to market it. Dare whoever runs the decision to award a BCS slot to take it away in a year. Although I have a nasty hunch that the whole BCS might be done away with very shortly if the super conferences come to pass. I can see a scenario where the supers conspire to guarantee big bowl slots for their champions and their runner ups.

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Cody Stumma 3 years, 10 months ago

I still think the MWC is the way to go... it'll help our football game tremendously, and although our basketball will suffer slightly, the season is already watered down anyways... all that matters is the Post-season Tournaments. Besides, Memphis was able to do fine in the C-USA, there should be no reason we can't do well in the MWC.

Besides, it should help with our Women's Basketball program as well (sad to say, going to a weaker conference should help them win a few more games, to get equal footing, and start to build from there.

Matt, how does this conference alignment affect our other sports? You know... like Women's Basketball, Volleyball, Soccer, etc.?

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azalum 3 years, 10 months ago

Sources close to the talks between the Big 12 and Pac-10 say Kansas has moved ahead of Utah as a candidate to replace Texas A&M on the Pac-10's invite list. --chip brown orangebloods.com

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Jake Waddle 3 years, 10 months ago

I don't see why we couldn't just add 2 teams and keep the BIG XII. Say TCU (who has been better than nebraska in football, baseball, and would enter as a celar dweller for basketball just like nebraska) and then also plucking Memphis from CUSA. Getting them for Colorado would be a great deal! This way the Big XII still exists and we get stronger teams then we had b4!

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sbucks 3 years, 10 months ago

Forget the SEC, does anybody think Kentucky is going to vote to invite us to their league ? They would be taking the chance of losing once or twice a year to us and they ain't going to go for that, we are to close to them in wins. I like the idea of B12 absorbing the MW, with Boise St. and remaining 5 B12 schools that makes 16. We also retain BCS invite.

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KU08 3 years, 10 months ago

Here's another nightmare scenario (for me at least): A&M says no to the PAC 1X, the PAC then intends to offer KU, but Texas steps in the way and demands Baylor. The reason Baylor is left out of PAC expansion talks in the first place is that Colorado already had an invitation and jumped at it to avoid getting the shaft. I would not put it past Texas to do that.

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Martin Rosenblum 3 years, 10 months ago

Did anybody else find this part of the article a little demeaning?

"..Instead of the MWC taking the Big 12’s castaways — Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Iowa State and Baylor — the Big 12 could absorb all 10 members of the Mountain West, including newly acquired Boise "

Castaways- we're now castaways?

Excue me, but, these teams are the holdouts, core, nucleus - not castaways!!!

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rockemchalkemrobots 3 years, 10 months ago

I like the idea as a the only option that does not involve hoping, praying, and begging for another league to see our value. On top of this "make the most of a bad situation" strategy, it would give the Big 12 survivors the ability to move the HQ back to KC and host many events there as well. The buyout money could be used to subsidize cable and satellite provides who pick up the new network.

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KU08 3 years, 10 months ago

It still surprises me how little influence basketball has on this whole conference realignment debacle. I think the basketball coaches need to ban up and lobby their schools to make a move that benefits basketball. Maybe Self could call up his old friend John Calipari, the most popular person in Kentucky, and get him to lobby Kentucky to demand KU added to the SEC. (That would be so funny if Calipari saved KU from mid-major status.) I'm serious. The basketball coaches need to work together to make sure their respective conferences make a commitment to basketball.

My favorite outcome is still joining the Big 10ish due to geographical sensibility, exposure to me (live in Iowa), and I think Mizzou will eventually be offered by the Big Ten but maybe not this year. The Pac 16 would be a nice fall-back, but I love the idea of twice per year games of KU vs. UK in the SEC. That would generate more excitement than UNC-Duke (it would - everyone not in North Carolina is sick of the unwarranted prestige). The Big Mountain West is our safe option, but one that makes me a little queezy.

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buckleyhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

Between the flooding and this story and this message board, I am now depressed. I can't believe there are people who thinks KU in the MWC is a good idea. They are mid-majors! It becomes a very, very, very one-sided agreement, where we are giving all. I don't want to be a big fish in a small pond. There is nothing about it that sounds appealing whatsoever. I think that even the PAC-whatever is a half-step down (but is much less worse than the 3 steps down that would be the joining forces with MWC).

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Sean Edmiston 3 years, 10 months ago

Top to bottom, this new conference would not be the same quality as the Big 12. However, at the top, this league would be just as competitive and strong as most other "BCS" conferences. KU, KSU, and Missouri all could be top-10 teams in men's basketball, this season and you would be adding 4 schools that won at least 25 games, though against lesser competition (outside of the top for MWC teams, the next winningest team in the league had just 16 wins).

On top of that, you would have a league with 5 schools that have played in a BCS bowl since 2003 (Kansas, Kansas St, Utah, TCU, and Boise St) as well as Missouri who is, well, Missouri.

From an athletic competitiooon standpoint, this proposed league would be nothing to scoff at. And it would be a league where KU might be a more powerful force than they have been in the Big 12.

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CaramelMacchMan 3 years, 10 months ago

MWC???? are you freaking kidding me? I would go on hunger strike if that happens.

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CaramelMacchMan 3 years, 10 months ago

My latest intell tell me that KU is going to be in SEC. And I really trust this source. Something going on behind doors? Maybe!!!

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jayhawkintexas 3 years, 10 months ago

If the Big 12 is history and a 16 team conference is created, does Phillips 66 then change it's name to Phillips 88 and sponsor the broadcasts??? Seriously though, living in Texas I would hope KU goes to the Pac 10 if Texas jumps because then we could continue watching the games either on the TV or in person. If the remaining 5 merge with the MWC, we have to rely the games being broadcast on the internet and those may be few and far between.

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shimjhawk2002 3 years, 10 months ago

Why would anyone want to drop their more stable conferences to join the Big XII castaways? Now if it is pitched as a merger then it would make sense for MWC, but I really don't see teams excited to join a bunch of leftovers, so don't think we'll go raid conferences for pieces that benefit us. We will get the unwanted members of their conference too. Also, if this MWC and Big XII merger happens, the 16th member will be Memphis, because the CEO of Fedex (Memphis alumni) has pleged a bunch of money for a BCS conference that will include Memphis. In fact, with his money I wouldn't be surprised if this scenario becomes the front runner. Seems to make too much sense. Gives Big XII leftovers a conference. Gives MWC a BCS bid they desire. Gives Memphis a new home plus brings the conference money they will desparately need to compete with all these huge power conferences. Gives the conference its own network. Not sure how many people know this but the MWC has a cable network channel already. In fact I think their network what was inspired the Big 10 network is what I've heard.

With all that said, I still hold out hope for a Big East invitation because I think it would provide more exposure to our basketball program. But I'm afraid that the MWC option is probably what will happen.

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gongs4ku 3 years, 10 months ago

MWC is a scrub conference, especially in basketball. KU is an elite basketball school. Big East is the best basketball conference out there. So, uh, hello?

To me, the Big East is by far the most attractive option available, but partly this is because I live east of KU and would rarely go to see them play if they joined the Pac-??. Also, most of their schools are two time zones west--many of us will be asleep before the ends of basketball games. Not appealing.

Big East or bust!

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ProudKansan 3 years, 10 months ago

Kansas Missouri K-State Iowa State TCU Houston Memphis UNLV Utah Boise State BYU Colorado State New Mexico

Try like crazy to get: Louisville - Better fit than Big East Cincinnati - Better fit than Big East Arkansas - Convince them they could be football king of this conference

Consider adding to strengthen basketball and add new markets: Marquette Gonzaga DePaul Butler

I'm a huge fan of this!!! I think this is BCS level in football and REALLY strong in basketball. I think this would be a perfect fit for KU. Assuming Lew could do some work and convince these other schools to jump on board.

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DWINOP 3 years, 10 months ago

"Should A&M head to the SEC, that would leave Kansas in an interesting position of whether to pursue becoming the 16th school in the Pac-10 or to stick with the potential Big 12/Mountain West merger that seems to be gaining momentum."

If KU has the opportunity to join the Pac -- big if right now, sure -- and passes it up to stay with K-State, MU, ISU and Baylor to absorb the MWC, then Gray-Little and Perkins should be fired for gross incompetence. And I would advocate resurrecting Quantrill from the grave to lead a raid on Lawrence to burn down the chancellor's mansion and the Parrot Athletic Center.

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OldOldHawk 3 years, 10 months ago

Big XII remainder absorbing the MWC. Hmmm. What a novel idea. Anybody been reading my posts the last four days?

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HawkfromHays 3 years, 10 months ago

A good idea if we can't go PAC-10:

Take 5 remaining Big 12 teams and absorb the MWC. Then go get Memphis as a 16th member. This would add another TV market, and put 5 good basketball teams into a conference which is already strong in football.

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Jacobpaul81 3 years, 10 months ago

the Ideal situation in my HUMBLE opinion is:

KU, KSU, ISU, MU, OSU and OU stay together.

Louisville, Cincinnati, West Virginia, and Pittsburgh join them.

A Ten team conference with the market share in Kansas, Oklahoma, Southern Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Northern Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and eastern Pennsylvania would be huge. There's no Big Ten to compete with. I live in Central Indiana and all I get is Big East sports. Apart from Notre Dame, there isn't a Big East school in Indiana. If we could pick those 4 public universities (all with great football and basketball programs) up, there's absolutely no reason to go west.

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azalum 3 years, 10 months ago

i guess to me "saving" the big 12 means keeping the current teams together. not adding a bunch of new schools and keeping the same conference flag flying.

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kcowan30 3 years, 10 months ago

What happened to the talk of wherever KU goes it has to take along its little sister K-State?

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Steve Brown 3 years, 10 months ago

Late breaking news: the remnants of the Big XII don't look so bad and then why not add ATM. They get to stay w.out big brother. sweet.

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Steve Brown 3 years, 10 months ago

Beebe would be willing to oversee one of the 16-team power conferences he’s lobbied.

If General Custer had survived I doubt McCellan would have put him in charge of the dakota clean up efforts. BEEBEE dishonorable discharge.

I knew after I saw Matrix, 13th Floor and Momento a few years ago that reality was about to change for all of us.

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ProudKansan 3 years, 10 months ago

Any chance the Big XII members left could hand pick the MWC schools they want??? Pick Utah, TCU, UNLV, BYU, Colorado State, Boise State Then go after Memphis, Houston, Fresno State...maybe try to pull a Louisville, Cincinati or Arkansas.

Also...any chance of putting together the best 12 "leftover" schools for football and basketball for football season. Then add Gonzaga, Marquette, Butler, DePaul or a MVC school to make a 16 team basketball conference. Basketball conference would be stronger and keep Bill Self happy.

Sounds kinda crazy but I think it might be a good idea...

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shimjhawk2002 3 years, 10 months ago

OK let's be realistic........Big 10 not happening......ACC not happening.......SEC doubt it.......Pac 10 maybe but looking like a long shot. I think that the remaining leftover schools had the conference call yesterday and said let's stick together in this......So I think we are looking at either a move of the leftover 5 to the Big East or meging with the MWC.

This blog seems that the Big East would be very interested but waiting for the implosion to happen.

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/sports/blogs/Watch-This/The-Big-East-will-listen-to-all-schools-who-want-membership-96216244.html

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Gil Ek 3 years, 10 months ago

Still torn, Pac-10 (East) would be very good. Big Mountain West 12 could become very cool in a few years, then still think joining a Big-10 (west) Nebraska, KU, Iowa, MN, WI, Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue would be great geographically. Still unbdecided. Probably vote Pac-10 for Big-12 South and UCLA basketball sched's

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Martin Rosenblum 3 years, 10 months ago

What if..............

Or, What if...........

But, What if............

Then again, What if..........

Unless any of us is secretly on the Borad of Regents or holds political office or is an authorized agent for any of the universities or conferences, we're just playing mental masturbation here. My life has enough stress in it already. I'm taking my ususal "If you can't personally change something, don't spend time worrying about it - it's displaced negative energy"

We'll learn of the final plans when they are officially announced, sometime in the next 1-2 weeks. Until then I'm not risking going blind!

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TenaciousD 3 years, 10 months ago

Definebordom - Nice post. Thanks for posting that re: the MWC so I didn't have too. I was thinking the exact same things regarding KSA's post.

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1977kufan 3 years, 10 months ago

IHOHMAN3, Thank you for your post, but you need to pay more attention to what's going on in the re-alignment decisions and in history. Coach Self is from Oklahoma State. Now several ifs come in to play. If Oklahoma State decides to go to the Pac-10 (pretty good chance of this) and if we (the University of Kansas) are relegated to a non-BCS conference (fairly low chance, but possible) and if Coach Self decides to leave, T Boone Pickens (who has already presented a substantial offer for Coach Self to return to his alma mater) will be splashing oil money far greater than any offer from MSU. The other if in this is Tom Izzo going to the Cleveland Cavaliers. I am not from the Lansing/East Lansing area, but my intuition is that Coach Izzo is too sharp of an individual to have any desire to address and deal with the manipulation and egos that are present in the NBA. So let's see for Coach Self, would he return to the Stillwater area with a very large sum of money and his alma mater or would he go to the East Lansing area with a lesser sum of money. I certainly have nothing against MSU or East Lansing (super great University in an equally great college town), but I will let you think about this and you make the decision. Which would you do???

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rockyhawk10 3 years, 10 months ago

I like this idea a lot! Merge with the MWC. Add SMU for the Dallas market. Rename the leage Big West.

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angelfan61 3 years, 10 months ago

All in all, I have no big issues with this...as long as we add Houston as the 16th team and that Bozo Beebe is asked to find other employment

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pigballin 3 years, 10 months ago

WAYWARDJAY,,you picked the right handle,,you are way wayward.

Hope the board of regents aren't of your thinking.

And your take of Self not being the right coach for leaving under sucha weakened conference is total bull. I suppose you were in favor of the new state tax increase also.

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100 3 years, 10 months ago

No.

Bad idea.

Actually a good idea.

But bad timing.

It's 2010.

The Pac 10 fanbase wants us.

We would have 6 original big 12 members (the Pac 16 east).

Plus Arizona and Arizona State to complete the Pac 16 east.

Believe it or not, in football, we would rarely travel big distances really, we'd play only two teams from the Pac 16 west a year. One of them would travel to Lawrence.

In basketball, we would make four away games to take on the Pac 16 west. The other four Pac 16 west games would be in Lawrence. And seven PAC 16 games against the East.

I agree with Jaybate in terms of the timezone argument, but hearing the fans talk out here (I'm still in LA for a few more days), they really want KU very much over A&M.

So in many ways the SEC would do great things for us, timewise, and financially speaking....

But if the Pac 10 offers us a spot, we should take it and keep our basketball rivalry with Texas alive and keep on growing our football ceiling with Turner Gill athletes he's recruiting (speed is what wins and he's getting it). The SEC is chatting about us but I don't get the feeling they'll offer by Tuesday.

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waywardJay 3 years, 10 months ago

OK....

Let's inventory ourselves a little bit.

Northern Iowa, Michigan State, Bradley/ Memphis ( came the closest ),UCLA,Bradley, BUcknell and Georgia Tech.

Those are the teams that have ended our season during the Self Era. I know, I know. You gotta be thinking to yourself. Michigan State,UCLA and Georgia tech right. They were power house teams that overmatched us.

Nope, it's the little ones that cause us trouble. We prpare for the battleships and get sunk by the little bitty, tugboats.

We beat Duke and Arizona in roy's last year only to get beaten by Syracuse's Freshman.... Juggernaut yes, but much more mid-major like. Streaky Erratic and gimmicky.

Maryland got us in 2002. Seem to remember Rhode Island got us. SO did Utep. So did Purdue's Glenn RObinson show.

My point is, Kansas State, Mizzou and Kansas as they currently represent are by far enough to house an elite basketball league. UNLV Utah and BYU would be good additions also, there might also by some offers on the table for basketball like Wichita State and Creighton. Possibly Memphis. Regional teams that will solidify whatever "weaknesses" the MWC would have.

If Self left KU because it was no longer in the confernece what does that say about Self ??? He's only at KU because he's in a big time conference.... That's not the coach we want, and I don't believe that's the coach we have. Maybe that's why Lew left, but I don't see Bill leaving like that.

On the other hand, Adding Boise, TCU, Utah ( if Utah does decide to buy into the cellar of the PacXX ) and fresno state could make our FOotball ocnference the unheralded conference of the future. keep in mind, BCS has done everything it can to keep these kids from Dancing against the florida's and USC's of the world. Imagine if we opened the door and let them into the Party.

I'm totally sold on the MWC- Big 12 Merger. I would like to see a couple more Basketball schools added, but I LOVE the IDEA.

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Mkultra 3 years, 10 months ago

Jaybate there will not be a chance ANY team from a major conference will want to leave for a gutted Big XII ! That is just as dumb as thinking Kansas should join the Mountain West!

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Vern58 3 years, 10 months ago

Big 10 membership, whenever they expand, should be the ultimate goal. Failing that, the projected Big East Conglomeration is the next best thing. KU and the Pac whatever is not a solution. Fraid OU is going to discover this soon.Neither is the SEC. Going south for Kansas is a cultural waste. The suggestion that an elite athletic program like KUs would find this slapped up rinky dink MWC, with it's mid major majority is insulting. We have too much going for us. We could maintain our Independence until the right situation presents itself. The suggestion that KU and K-State come as a package is i am afraid a non starter. There are Conferences that would wccept KU more willingly, provided K-State is not a part of the deal. The time has come for each school to look after their own futures.

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jaybate 3 years, 10 months ago

"Reading Self: Don't Merge East, or West, Expand the B 12 East and South!!!"

The simplest move is for the Big 12 North to find two teams to replace NU and CU, then plug themselves into the Big East, or ACC, as a midwestern division.

The dumbest move would be to merge into the mountain time zone, unless it is coupled with the simplest move.

But Self is signalling something else.

Self is signalling that his vision is keeping whatever remains of the Big 12 alive and adding 2 or 6 teams to make it a better basketball conference.He's saying the Big 12 can land in venues they have never been in before.

Think about this. It took a few seconds for me to get what he is hinting at.

Self wants the Big 12 to expand into the eastern time zone!!!

Don't merge east, or west.

Expand east, And replace south!

Lew and Self are finally signalling a plan.

Expand South...

Houston brings Houston market. SMU brings Dallas market.

Expand East...

The Big 12 cherry picks football schools from the Big East.

Syracuse, Pitt, West Virginia, Notre Dame from the Big East.

Voila!

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Mkultra 3 years, 10 months ago

Maybe they will figure out if we move to or create an inferior conference the donor money will dry up and the recruits won't come...they must protect the basketball that is the most important goal obviously

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Mkultra 3 years, 10 months ago

What a terrible idea! KU is far better off going to the ACC, Big East, ACC Big East basketball hybrid, SEC, Big 11 (12), PAC-1X! No way they should do this if they do that will be the worst decision in Kansas history and would kill our sports. It is not worth it just to stay together with Kstate. I could see our idiotic leaders pulling this and we are much better than this, KU is ELITE!

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Hank Cross 3 years, 10 months ago

MW mergers with B12, Forgotten 5 merge with MW - what's the difference? The P16 and BE scenarios were far more intriguing. BTW a DC newspaper has already favorably examined the BE scenario.

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KU91 3 years, 10 months ago

If we were to somehow save the Big XII by a MWC/Big XII merger, and become the Big XVI (With the addition of Houston and/or SMU (If Utah goes to the Pac 26.).). Since Dan Beebe is a horrible commishioner, and does not want to run a 16 team Super Conference anyways. Why not make the current MWC Commishioner the new commishioner, he seems to actually know what he is doing? This time around, we would probably want to make it an equal distrubtion of money.

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lhohman3 3 years, 10 months ago

Bill Self would most likely leave after next year if faced with the prospect of KU basketball having to realign with MWC. -- Possibly even sooner; if KU is forced into MWC in the next 2 weeks & if coupled with T. Izzo taking Cavs job. Self would most likely be MSU #1 choice to replace Izzo & I wouldn't blame him for going.

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defineboredom 3 years, 10 months ago

Beebe is a lame duck but doesn't see it. He seems to be somewhat spineless, and should probably be fired. But luck is that he would stick around....

on the other hand....

If TA&M goes to the SEC, it would be interesting to see if the Pac-?? picks up KU. I wouldn't mind one bit! Flip the bird at Mizzou and KSU, and, for that matter, even Texas.

And what doesn't the MWC add? Three BCS bowl teams (Boise St., Utah,and TCU). Utah is undefeated in their last 9 bowl meetings, including a Sugar Bowl appearance against Alabama. Boise St. has won both of their BCS bowl games, and TCU's only appearance was a loss to Boise St. In fact, the MWC has won more of the ESPN Bowl Challenge cups (3) than any other conference. In addition, UNLV, Utah and BYU add very good basketball teams. Too bad that KSA has head-up-butt syndrome.

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azalum 3 years, 10 months ago

you know what makes me sick. aTm has not finished in the top 25 in football this decade and cu has never did anything EVER! yet ku, state, and mu are being passed by because of population.

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kansaspike 3 years, 10 months ago

Would the decision between being 16th Pac XX team or go with the new Big12/MWC really be hard?

Give me a break. Let's see.....KU vs. UCLA in hoops.....or KU vs. Boise St in hoops.

Pac XX by far our #1 option, has to be.

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KSA_21_3503 3 years, 10 months ago

Big 12 is not worth saving. MWC adds nothing anyway.

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Jack Wilson 3 years, 10 months ago

"Beebe would be willing to oversee one of the 16-team power conferences he’s lobbied against in recent weeks."

Uh, first order of business would be to fire Mr. Beebe. Correct?

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