7:47 p.m. Update:
Well, after four-plus hours, Missouri's board of curators officially authorized MU chancellor Brady Deaton to explore the school's options for moving to another conference or staying in the Big 12.
This certainly isn't ground-breaking news, but it's not the news the Big 12 would've loved to hear, which would've been that the Tigers are happy in the Big 12 and staying put.
That still could be the outcome, but, for now, we'll have to keep waiting on Mizzou.
Here's a recap of the press conference that followed the meeting.
In related news, Deaton resigned his post as the chairman of the Big 12's board of directors.
I wouldn't read too much into that move. Sources have said that if Deaton were given the power to negotiate for a new conference, he likely would step down from that position because of a conflict of interest.
It will be interesting to see who replaces him but that's the least of the league's concerns right now.
It's great that we know what they're thinking over there in Columbia, Mo., but, really, do we know much more than we did this morning? We're still waiting on Mizzou to make a decision and the Tigers have said that they have no time table for such an announcement.
Fear not, says Big 12 interim commissioner Chuck Neinas: “Missouri is a member in good standing in the Big 12, and I anticipate will continue to be a member of the Big 12.”
5:55 p.m. Update:
Missouri curators heading into fourth hour... Seriously. Important to remember that this meeting is not only about conference affiliation, but still.... Wow.
Care to watch? Komo.com is streaming the meeting live right now.
2:12 p.m. Update:
More sign that point to Mizzou staying in the Big 12 are starting to pop up. As mentioned earlier, it is expected that MU's board of curators will give Mizzou chancellor Brady Deaton full authority to handle conference affiliation at today's meeting.
However, that does not necessarily mean that MU is going anywhere.
Just found out that the meeting is actually taking place in St. Louis, not Columbia.
Here's a report from the Tennessean that quotes Vanderbilt vice chancellor David Williams as saying the SEC has nothing lined up for a 14th team.
And here's this from Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports, who says the Big 12 needs interim commissioner Chuck Neinas more than Neinas needs the Big 12.
I'll bring links and info about what's said at MU's meeting when it becomes available.
9:41 a.m. Update:
Folks following the realignment fiasco have known for some time that today would be a big day regarding the Missouri Tigers and their ongoing decision to stay in the Big 12 or bolt for the SEC.
Missouri's board of curators meets today with realignment being one of the most likely and most interesting topics. While opinions and reports have gone both ways regarding MU staying put or leaving, don't expect a final decision to come today.
We may get closer to an outcome and it may become clearer what the Tigers are going to do, but it's most likely that the board simply will authorize MU chancellor Brady Deaton to fully represent the university in realignment conversations, much the same way both OU and UT did a couple of weeks ago with their presidents.
Despite reports from folks who cover the SEC saying the Tigers are headed south, I continue to believe MU will stay in the Big 12. Different sources I've talked to in the past week have indicated that MU is leaning toward returning to the conference. It's likely that the Tigers are doing their due diligence by fully exploring the opportunity in the SEC and perhaps even more likely that this whole deal has been nothing more than a charade by a university wanting people to tell it it's loved. Maybe both.
Mike DeArmond, of The Kansas City Star, says one of the hot topics at today's curators meeting will go beyond weighing the pros and cons of the two leagues and two outcomes. The Tigers today will likely discuss whether they can or should trust the new Big 12. http://www.kansascity.com/2011/10/03/3185178/whether-to-trust-big-12-is-at.html
While we wait for more news regarding Mizzou, here are a few links to get you up to speed on the decision the Tigers are facing.
Here's an interesting article from the folks at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, who offer up a few quick and different thoughts on what the Tigers might do. http://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/round-two/article_99476bc0-edff-11e0-b4f3-001a4bcf6878.html
No differing opinions here from ESPN.com's David Ubben, who writes why the Tigers should stay in the Big 12. http://espn.go.com/blog/big12/post/_/id/35064/why-missouri-should-stay-in-the-big-12
Here's a brief overview from the Columbia Tribune of what today's meeting could include. http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2011/oct/03/um-curators/
And, finally, a quick recap from the Austin American-Statesman's Kevin Lyttle, who says that Monday's revenue-sharing announcement from the Big 12 may have been an attempt by the league to entice Mizzou to stick around. http://www.statesman.com/sports/collegefootball/big-12-trying-to-hang-onto-missouri-offers-1893736.html