Why Kansas is winning the conference realignment game

Kansas University athletic director Sheahon Zenger watches the Jayhawks warm up before tip off against Texas Tech on February 1, 2011.

Kansas University athletic director Sheahon Zenger watches the Jayhawks warm up before tip off against Texas Tech on February 1, 2011. by Richard Gwin

10:21 p.m. Update:

Back with a link. No word of the 10-2 margin here, but this backs up Chip Brown's info.

10:13 p.m. Update:

Word is starting to trickle in about the SEC vote regarding A&M. Chip Brown of has Tweeted that he heard the vote was 10-2 in favor of adding the Aggies.

In addition, Brown says the SEC has targeted West Virginia as its first choice as the 14th member.

No official announcement expected until sometime tomorrow... But anything less than 10-2 in favor would shock me. A&M's going to the SEC and when that's official, things will really start moving.

Buckle up.

And, of course, stay tuned...

7:37 p.m. Update:

Sorry... Had to step away for a bit to make a few calls, but, while I was away, this came across the wire. Nothing Earth-shattering here but it is interesting nonetheless.

For those who see this as a bad sign, stop and think for a minute what you would expect the regents to say. Anyway, here it is... From The Associated Press.

As we move into the evening we're just waiting for word from the SEC about whether they officially invited Texas A&M into the league or not. Oh, I guess we're also waiting to see if A&M accepts if they're invited. Wouldn't that be interesting.

Stay tuned...

Here's the bulk of the AP report:

• LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — The chairman of the Kansas Board of Regents says it would be best for Kansas and Kansas State to remain in the same conference, even if the Big 12 eventually falls apart.

Ed McKechnie told The Associated Press in a phone interview Tuesday that the Board prefers for the Big 12 to remain together, and "until something happens, I'm just not going to speculate on what else there could be."

The New York Post reported Monday the Big East has studied the feasibility of adding three schools — possibly Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri — to create a super conference with 12 football-playing members and 20 schools that participate in basketball.

Athletic directors for all three schools said Saturday they remain committed to the Big 12, even though officials from Oklahoma have acknowledged that other conferences are interested in the Sooners and Texas A&M has announced plans to leave the 10-member league.

4:13 p.m. Update:

Mentioned this briefly in the comments below, but thought I should throw it up here for those who missed it.

We all know that the Big East is offering up a fallback plan to a few Big 12 schools should the conference blow up. Multiple sources have told me that contact has been made and that, while there isn't an official offer in place, there has been talk of an offer-to-be should the Big 12 cease to exist.

If that becomes true, it's entirely possible that the Big East, which now is on the record saying it wants to expand to 12 football schools, would gladly slide into the TV slot vacated by the Big 12, which could include a substantial deal from Fox. Although the numbers probably would not be the same — since the Big East would not have UT or OU — they would be significant and enough to make the Big East a player in the super conference game.

Again, I'm not saying this is the direction KU is headed or should be headed, just pointing out that those who are down on the Big East being an option should remember that what you're down on is not the same as what it would become.

Here's a link that explains more about the Big East's desire to expand to 12 football schools.

2:34 p.m. Update:

Not a lot here, but this statement came out of the chancellor's office today. KU chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little continues to stress that the Big 12 is the best place for Kansas.

Having said that, there's clear language in here that indicates that the Jayhawks are not standing pat and waiting for the Big 12 to be saved.

Here's her statement:

"It's obviously disappointing that it has come to this point. Keeping the Big 12 strong and competitive remains our top preference, but no matter what happens we're going to continue to work in the best interests of the University of Kansas. That's our number one priority and it's what we've been focused on throughout the process as we've looked at all our options when it comes to conference realignment."

Original Post:

Kansas University athletic director Sheahon Zenger is having one of those Jerry Maguire moments right about now.

Sitting in front of Zenger, who’s been on the job all of eight months, are two very different options. Option 1: Join the masses in the relentless pursuit of the almighty dollar while doing whatever it takes to reach that end. Option 2: Stick to your guns, lean on your morals and hope that, somehow and someday, the very thing you’ve spent your entire life believing in — the good of man — will be enough to keep KU afloat once this conference realignment madness comes to a close.

Time to call Rod Tidwell.

While Zenger has stood tall, remained honest with everyone and, perhaps to a fault, taken the word of his fellow Big 12 ADs to be worth something, presidents and administrators at other Big 12 institutions, as well as in conferences around the nation, have been scheming. All apologies for the negative connotation that automatically comes with the word, but you know the saying. If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, right?

On the outside, nervous KU fans and probably even a few of KU’s coaches, likely are wishing that Zenger would do more. Call the Pac-12 and beg for a spot. Tell ’em how much more attractive KU is than Texas Tech. Dial up the Big Ten and explain to them all of the wonderful cultural and academic offerings that KU would bring. Hammer home to anyone who will listen the point about KU’s hoops program being truly elite, one of the best of all-time, a program with unparalleled tradition. All true. All irrelevant at the moment.

I’m not saying that Zenger shouldn’t be making calls. In the wake of last weekend’s comments from Oklahoma president David Boren, it’s safe to assume KU’s AD is making and taking a lot of calls these days. What I am saying is that panicking would be the worst move for Kansas right now. The conferences in question know exactly what KU brings to the table. Some like it. Others are merely luke warm about it. But it’s there. Groveling, pleading or, worse yet, mud-slinging only will harm KU’s image. And right now, in a situation driven by very little substance, image is everything.

With a new conference and another sexy scenario entering the picture almost every hour now, it doesn’t take a genius to see how fragile things are. A wink and a deal one minute can be blown to bits the next. Wanna know the easiest way for an AD to make sure the second part of that equation happens? Have him start running his mouth and beating his chest about what a great deal he pulled off. Poof! Gone.

But Zenger won’t do it. And it’s a smart move. Not for him, but for KU. By staying patient and in tune with everything that's going on out there, the Jayhawks are ensuring that they'll be fine when all this is over. More than a few people in the conference have told me that. So why mess it up by gravitating toward the spotlight?

While it may make some nervous and cause others to scratch their heads or pull their hair out, Zenger’s playing this thing just right. On the surface, Kansas is loyal to the Big 12 and, if circumstances allow, always will be. But a few layers deeper, there’s real action taking place and, believe it or not, both Zenger and KU chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little are right in the middle of it.

Remember, Zenger’s an old football coach. The man knows how to fight. Although it may look like he’s passively standing by, that’s anything but the case. There's a lot at stake here — both in terms of KU's position in the future of college athletics and legal ramifications — and a misstep one way or the other could not only jeopardize KU's spot at the big boy table but also could cost the university and/or the Big 12 a ton of money.

Here’s the deal; regardless of what Zenger does or does not do in the next couple of weeks, all that matters is how this thing turns out. If KU lands on its feet in one of the so-called power conferences — be it the Big East, Pac-12, Big Ten or even the Big 12 — then all of the anxiety many are feeling will be forgotten. Don’t buy it? Come talk to me in four or five weeks and I’ll ask you what happened in Kansas State’s football opener this weekend. Sure, the Wildcats’ 10-7 escape at home against Eastern Kentucky is fresh and kind of funny right now, but K-State won. And that’s all we’ll remember. The same would’ve held true a year ago had the Jayhawks found a way to sneak past North Dakota State, 10-6, 9-6, 8-6, whatever.

And that’s where we’re at with conference realignment, too.

Just before Jerry Maguire had his moment of clarity, the young son of a high-profile client who had just suffered a serious injury uttered a few choice words to the hot-shot sports agent. Born from the feeling that followed was Maguire’s mission statement: “The Things We Think and Do Not Say.”

At this point, I’m not sure if the Big 12 is going to survive or not. A week ago, I would’ve said yes. Two days ago I would’ve said no way. There’s a lot of talk regarding the league’s uncertain future right now. But it’s the things that aren’t said that could shape how this whole thing turns out. That includes pulling back on phrases like “Show me the money.”

I know this isn’t Hollywood. But you have to admit, it kind of feels like it.



BCSsux 2 years, 7 months ago

Hate 2 say, but anyone not in Kansas, NC, or currently in the big (L)east cares at all about Basketball. W/ WVU going as the 14th 2 the SEC; Kansas is likely screwed as the BE is going to b raided 4 TV markets. KU is not a national brand (as some are suggesting) & and afterthought in what really matters... Football. Don't see any conferences clamoring to get Memphis or Louisville do ya??


Cornfeeder 2 years, 7 months ago

I appreciate the reasons of those who aren't thrilled about the Big East. Valid points. But its' not like other conferences are clubs, and you can just join up whenever you feel like it. Sure, i would rather KU be a B10 or Pac12 team. But in case you haven't noticed, nobody in those conferences is extending invitations (not yet).

If, as rumored, the PAC12 takes the TX and OK teams, that makes 16 and they'll stop there, almost certainly.

That leaves the B10. They'll be looking for four more. Perhaps.

If so, ND, Rutgers, Pitt, and ?? Perhaps KU is next best choice. I sure hope, because it's either that, or KU is about to become a mid major.


William Blake 2 years, 7 months ago

This will be the perfect opportunity to get away from Texas!

Let them take their Cowboy Stadium and their Longhorn Network down the road... I suggest they file to join the NBA and NFL. They have ruined our league by going beyond the spirit of sport to dominating through the almighty dollar.

I called the end of the Big 12 long ago because of Texas.

If there is a way to save this league, the first order of business is to boot Texas!

The Longhorn Sports Program is over the top for college sports. They moved the bar too high to keep it competitive with all other schools.

In my opinion, they have no business being in a league, they should go it alone.


BrinkDaddy 2 years, 7 months ago


Two questions for you….

1) What are ramifications on automatic BCS bids in the event of realignment? More specifically, if OU and OSU leave for Pac 12 and Big 12 picks up three new teams will it keep it’s automatic BCS bid? If so, isn’t this ideal for KU in that we got rid of 3 strong football schools in exchange for (presumably) weaker schools?

2) Why is no one mentioning KU to SEC? Mizzou obviously brings both St Louis and KC TV markets but doesn’t a much stronger hoops program carry enough weight to at least be considered in the discussion?



NH_JHawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Just heard an interview on xm91 college sports radio with Bill King. Had a Texas insider guy on (cant rember the name...Bobby something) who said if TAMU goes to the SEC then Texas and TTU are PAC 12 bound along with OU and OSU. That would all but assure KU is headed to the BE.


justinryman 2 years, 7 months ago

A&M GONE!!! as of 8:30 am cst Wednesday per ESPN's Joe Schad. SEC voted to invite them.

And another ones gone, another ones gone, another one bites the dust. Hey Hey!!


Clarence Haynes 2 years, 7 months ago

The operative word by the Regents is "prefer"!


Daniel Kennamore 2 years, 7 months ago

So the Big East...who many view as their first choice for already being poached? Gee...who could've seen that coming?


jhawkrulz 2 years, 7 months ago

Purple headed step-child will most likely be separated from us..

Big XII - Together - 1% Big East - Together - 27% Big Ten - Separate - 12% (KSU-Big East) Pac 12 - Separate - 45% (KSU-Big East) ACC - Separate - 10% (KSU-Big East) SEC Separate - 5% (KSU-Big East)

I've heard rumors Missouri might be #14 in the SEC,


bookemdano 2 years, 7 months ago

Someone on here earlier said this is like a soap opera for men--hit the nail on the head!

The latest now from Chip Brown is that A&M to SEC is not a done deal unless all of the remaining Big XII universities sign an agreement not to sue the SEC!

Got to sleep now... hopefully nothing big happens in the next six hours!


buckleyhawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Everybody keeps talking about everyone bailing out on long-standing traditions...and yes, at face value, that's what it looks like. But the reality is the big boys (meaning the big football schools) are all getting their feelings hurt/feeling insignificant/coming down with a severe case of Napoleon. It really sucks that everybody below that level (meaning everyone in the B12 not named OU/UT/A&M/NU) is getting dragged through it.

That said...this ship is sinking, or perhaps sunk. We now have to pray that the collegiate brethren to the west realize how great a place Lawrence is, how great a tradition KU basketball is, how much promise the rest of the AD has, and how huge the Jayhawk brand is (tell me people seeing KU v UCLA at Pauley don't realize this). Big East will fall/morph sooner than later; at some point, there will be 3 conferences left seen as stable.

Lastly, I don't care if Beebe "rescued" the B12, or if he was put in a bad spot to begin with; the failure has to start with somewhere, even if it's with his decision to take the job in the first place.


SeattleTom 2 years, 7 months ago

I don't know if we fit with Oklahoma and Texas, we enjoy football but don't base our entire lives and self worth on it. Although I'm sure they'll tell us how much better they are than us after they kick our a**.


SeattleTom 2 years, 7 months ago

FYI, Kansas is a pretty popular option for a lot of people out West. Culturally the people who have been to Lawrence think that Lawrence and Austin are the best fits for the Pac-12 of the options that are out there. But most people are wary of Texas.

Regarding the time & travel, it would most likely to be split west-east so you'd be with Colorado, Utah, the Arizonas, Missouri and Oklahoma schools (we'd really like the Texas schools and you guys but Oklahoma is coming if anybody is). In football you'd play those 7 plus 1 west coast road trip and 1 west coast team coming in.

In BB, you'd probably play 1/2 of the west coast teams - most Saturday games are at 1 or 3 though. Hope if anything happens, we get you guys.


ahpersecoachingexperience 2 years, 7 months ago

Remember there is one (new) president in the PAC that is familiar with the university of espn at Austin and he just said "we'll see what Texas does with their network. Texas likes to do things Texas' way"

Final prediction. OU Osu ku and MU to the PAC.


Joseph Kuebel 2 years, 7 months ago

Rob as much as I wish we had a chance at the B1G, I don't see where u have seen this as a rumor.

Big East: 60% PAC 16: 25% Big 12: 10% B1G: 5%

I don't agree. I don't think there's any possibility we go anywhere "less than" the Big East, meaning MWC, OR MVC. But I don't see and wonder where you have heard that the B1G is even being talked about much less a 25% chance we end up there. This appears a longer long shot than the ACC at this time, especially given that the B1G has given no indication of adding anyone at all. Also factoring in that the B1G didn't take MU who is a similar package to what we have to offer (we would add better basketball and name brand). MU wasn't added despise their markets STL and half of KC. It seems B1G is a pipe dream at this point... I wish it wasn't but haven't seen any indication of this being possible...

Sure we have a better name than Indiana, but that only goes so far. They seemingly want homerun adds only. The B1G is the most stringent conference when it comes down to adding schools but, by them adding a non AAU school shows this about $. Mizzou with STL wasn't added which seems it would be a $ decision, but apparently not. And Nebraska was added due to the revenue they bring in through a national brand and what they bring through TV contracts and primetime/ bowl/ BCS possibilities...It really does show what this whole expansion business is all about.


Steve Hillyer 2 years, 7 months ago

If it's the Big East I'll be in the throes of a major depressive episode


jgkojak 2 years, 7 months ago

Case in point about the Big East... they are losing 1 member. Its likely without WVU to keep them there (as a rival), Pitt will be waiting for that B10 invite, which of course means Rutgers will be going as well.

So in one fell swoop the Big East has lost 3 football schools -- and we are joining who? Oh... Syracuse, UConn, Cincinatti, Louisville, TCU and South Florida. That's not a major conference... that's C-USA (not one AAU school). (Iowa State folks are dancing right about now- they just got a Big East invite).

So where does this leave us?

The Pac leverages KU/MU to put pressure on Texas to put up or shut up. I'm guessing Texas bends. The Pac would love to take Texas and Kansas and I'm beginning to think TTech is destined for the Mtn West (where they belong with K-State).


trey 2 years, 7 months ago

BGL and Z should not be "waiting" for a PAC or BIG offer. They should be aggressively and proactively selling these two conferences on what we bring to the table NOW.

Sure I'm biased, but believe we really would bring a lot to either conference. But we have to SELL it. I think this be a good Big12 soldier, wait patiently to see what others do, we'll be fine wherever we land attitude, is pitiful. This will get us to the "leftovers", which will be a weak, short-term, Big East West division invite.

Seriously, are Texas Tech, Okie State, Mizzou, Rutgers, more valuable than we are? That's who we're going to lose out to in the BIG and PAC if we don't get our ass in gear.

I know that KC and our State aren't the biggest markets in the US, but they are not insignificant either. And we should be selling like crazy...

We are the freakin cradle of college basketball, not just a Top 5 program historically (which obvsiously we are), but the cradle. We just had a donor spend $4M just so we can house the original Naismith rules in our fieldhouse, which is voted as the best bball venue in the country. Our brand, the Jayhawk, is one of the most recognizable in college sports. We have 2nd most bball victories of all time. We recently won the NCAA championship AND freakin Orange Bowl, in the same year. Yes our football program is down (no denying), but we have had success in past and can in the future. And our record against MU (that great football program that all the conferences are supposedly after) is 50/50. Speaking of Missouri, our rivalry with them is one of the oldest and most heated in the country. Oh, and we're one of 60 AAU institutions. Oh, and KU MED is about to become and National Cancer Institute, and as such attract huge grants for cancer research.

Why in the hell are we waiting around, waiting for TX and OU to determine our fate by taking their "little sister" programs with them to their conference of choice.

Go sell the PAC on making us their next invite (which will kill the B12 and likely send OU, OSU and Texas come their way too). Then check in with the BIG one last time to make sure they really have no interest. And if not, go PAC and let everyone else scramble.

Make our own fate.

And contrary to what most are saying, that this is ALL about football and money, the more I think about the more I believe that is not true. The money is going to be big, and about the same, regardless of whether we have six 12 team conferences, or four 16 team conferences. On a per-team basis, it's not going to be that different. This is now about ego... Who's in the "best conference", and who has the "best conference". In that game, Basketball and image and brand matter. So we need to get selling NOW.


Travis Clementsmith 2 years, 7 months ago

Get some sleep Matt, you earned it again.


Hank Cross 2 years, 7 months ago

Here's an interview with WV AD Oliver Luck who was already subtley lobbying to get WV into SEC.

Also saw piece by Barry Trammel of OK today of which the upshot is that the P12 will leverage KU/MU to force UT's hand. Since he's one of the first to say that OU was going forward to the P12, so I'll give it some cred.


Josh Galler 2 years, 7 months ago

I just waiting until this is all over with


Keith Hummel 2 years, 7 months ago

It's a done deal. Reports are all over the Internet now that the SEC vote held on Tuesday night concluded with a 10-2 tally in favor of the Aggies joining the SEC. Announcement is expected on Wednesday. Unclear who the 14th school is at this point. It's either gonna be WV or MU, depending on who you believe.

Hold on to your hats ladies and gents! It's about to get a little crazy.


Travis Clementsmith 2 years, 7 months ago


If A&M is in, which it appears they are and then Mizzou is offered, how does that affect our status? Do you think Mizzou considers the financial impact to KC if KU and MU split? If we do split, what does that do to the fleeting hopes of the Big XII? Our position with the PAC? Does an ISU, KU, KSU package do as much for the BEAST in getting a big contract?

If MU gets offered and turns the SEC down, what does that say about MU's projections about where realignment is heading and where they think the opportunities might be coming from?


BarkingHawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Where is Lew Perkins when you really need him?


Hank Cross 2 years, 7 months ago

Just political cover from the Board of Regents. No need to be concerned unless there is a P12 or B10 offer on the table.


rob4lb 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt- Do you have in changes in your handicapping from the other.

My "list" is merely a best guess based on what I'm hearing from a number of different places.

Realistic: 1. Big East - 40% 2. Big Ten - 25% 3. Pac-16 - 20% 4. Big 12 - 10% 5. Other - 5%


rob4lb 2 years, 7 months ago

Maybe I'm given her too much credit, but I would like to think that BGL's statement about not being tied to K-State last week foreshadows something that is already in the works. This article is posted on Yahoo and ESPN so it just adds to the perception the two schools are tied. I am sure any conference we are in discussions with know that is not the case.

I couldn't agree more about the Big East and how it is not a good option. The stronger schools might not be in the conference once realignment shakes out. I will be extremely upset if we opt for the Big East with K-State over the Pac 12.


Pitthawk34 2 years, 7 months ago

I would give BGL my faith in that she has to be smart enough to know that if there is a PAC offer you take it. She should be smart emough to know what it would mean being in a conference with academic peers such as Stanford an Cal. She has to be smart enough to know that PAC is way more stable. That being said I doubt we get an offer from the PAC.


trey 2 years, 7 months ago

Every time I hear someone associated with KU (BGL, Z, Regents) say that KU and K-State want to stay together, it gives me a very sick feeling... that we're being conditioned for the "path of least resistance" scenario...

KU, K-State and Iowa State head to a new West division of the Big East.

We'll be sold on this as the right option because 1. Time Zone more convenient for our fans. 2. Better travel for our athletes. 3. Great hoops conference. 4 We get to stay connected with our great partner, K-State.

This is a big-time losing scario for KU. We trade conference teams like TX, OU, OSU, Missouri, for Cincinnati, Louisville, TCU, South Florida. Wow is that exciting.

And don't believe that Syracuse, UConn, Pitt, West Virginia are going to be equal trade-off for what we lose. They aint going to be there, and it won't take very long.

Then we'll be scrambling again, and more likely screwed.

It will take ZERO leadership to get us into the Big East. The Big East is desparate, and there is a reason why.

Boy I hope that I'm wrong, but from what I've seen so far from BGL and Zenger, I'm worried. I'm at a total loss regarding any impact BGL has had at KU. And so far, Zenger is a lot of rah-rah, clithe's, and doing it "the Kansas way". That gets old. I hope this combo can play with the big boys. We will find out very soon.


rob4lb 2 years, 7 months ago

Articles like this make me nervous I worry that staying with K-State is an criteria in deciding on a conference. I much prefer to stay in the same conference as Missouri than with K-State.


Pitthawk34 2 years, 7 months ago

Ed can say what he wants but if he keeps Ku from getting an invite to a major conference just because Kansas State is not up to standards he will have a hard time living in kansas. he had better move to Manhattan and never leave. Ed and the board of regents can prefer all they want but if Ku has a chance to land somewhere else besides being with kSU how in the hell can they hold them back. I would be very interested in the legalities of all of this. Would Kansas Athletics be able to file an lawsuit since they do not receive any money from the State? And if there is nothing in writing bonding the 2 schools...Well if their is an attorney out there please clear this up once and for all.


jgkojak 2 years, 7 months ago

So think through this one...

SEC wants WVU or MU for Team No. 14.

MO thinks (they've been wrong before - LOL) they're getting the B10 nod, so they turn down SEC (they can join as Team 15 or 16).

So SEC takes WVU.

At this point the Big East has lots a vital football playing school and is no longer an easy road to 12, especially with MO obviously out. This probably save IA State and K State, but points out how unstable the Big East is. So...

The B10 is kinda forced to put something on the table, so they take Rutgers (immediate YES) Pitt (YES) Missouri (YES) Notre Dame?

That's our spot.


Randy Bombardier 2 years, 7 months ago

This from Orangebloods:

Sources say Missouri has received feelers from the Big Ten, SEC, Pac-12 and Big East. Kansas has also received feelers from the Pac-12 and Big East, sources said. Kansas State has also received feelers from the Big East, sources said.

Really bummed that we have not heard (apparently) from Big10. When I think of football tradition I think Big10. It has always been my favorite conference outside of our own. Sure I would love to travel down to Corvallis or Eugene, Seattle, but the best move if we get the chance is with the good ole Big10. I like their style of play, the cool fall evenings, the leaves changing, the beautiful campuses. It is a Heartland conference. They are more like our cousins that the West Coast or the East Coast. They are more like our football family.


mikehawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Who needs the actual sports themselves? Who cares about the game of football? Conference realignment is the new sport in town, and judging by the blogs, WE LOVE IT!


Bob Forer 2 years, 7 months ago

While all the speculation makes for an interesting read, panic and/or endless discussion regarding the many permutations of possiblity isn't very productive, imho. We are what we are. A storied basketball program with a mediocre football history. Where we end up will be appropriate and consistent with our pedigree. And i guarantee you, we won't be locked out of the BCS or a major conference, and that's all that really matters.


Krohnutz 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt, come on, you gotta give the Nutz a piece of this one. Called it baby!

I really don't understand why people are so down on the Big East or Pac 12. Time frames for games are subject to TV's desire. Both situations would help basketball, and the Big East would REALLY help football considering we would be game ready right away.

Now it appears that the ACC is a player? Sweet. The Big 10 might start moving if others move? Sweet. We have some cards this time, and dumbass reporters (not you bud, but you know they are out there) are finally stopping the, "KU basketball don't matter, it all about de fussball!" It does matter, it is a lot of money in a greedy world. Once the UT's and OU's are in place they are going to be looking at KU.

The one thing I would like to change about the Big East is to somehow remove the non-football schools. I'm sorry, but forty-two basketball teams in a massive tournament is not a conference, it is a ragtag bunch that basically has no home.

Fix that, and I'm 110% behind the move. Actually, I'm behind any move. I just don't want to be in the Big Texass anymore.


Hank Cross 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt, Thanks for posting that about the BE expansion. 12 FB teams would go a long way to stabilizing that conference. Also, what makes the ACC so secure? The SEC has reputedly been coveting VaTech and UNC. If the SEC were to take those 2 (plus Duke of course), what would be left of the ACC? A FSU program that is only now starting to regain some of its prominence. Miami is going to be hit with penalities that will set them back a decade. MD could head to the B10, but there's nothing special about Wake or NC State w/o UNC or Duke.


Kevin Randell 2 years, 7 months ago

Ok...since everyone is throwing their hat into the ring on possibilities, I will do the same. I see all of this heading to a four regional conference format of at total of 64 - 80 playoff divisional teams.

Pac-16/20 will be divided up between an East and West divisions. If it's 16 then we will have rotating formats like the old Big XII. If it's 20, then we will see a format like out Big XII -2 format this year. Ending with a Championship game rotating between LA and Dallas.

SEC will most likely absorb some of the ACC and Big XII teams that the Pac doesn't want.

Big 10 will absorb some of the Big East and Big XII teams that the Pac or SEC doesn't want. for where and who the 4th super conference will be? I don't know....heck, how about Tex@$$ will make up their own conference taking in the Mountain West and a few C-USA teams to make sure they are in the playoffs each year?


* last rumor to throw out**** Bill Self is a football fan and will leave KU to take over the job at OSU because well......they joined a good conference.



jgkojak 2 years, 7 months ago

On the commute home you think of things... mulling over the Conf. re-alignment...

The leading indicator for Kansas fans to watch for is for Texas to become an Independent.

Here is how it sets up:

Texas declares itself either Indy or "still in the B12" (yeah, right)

OU and OSU to the Pac 16. The Pac needs 2 more members, so they approach KS and MO (fall back position KS and KSU).

MO makes 2 phone calls: To SEC: We've been offered Pac membership, and we're not switching conferences again, so if you want us, its now or never. Sh*t or get off the pot. To B10: My dear sirs, I humbly represent myself as a potential member of your fine organization. As I have been offered membership in 2 other organizations of lesser importance, I would of course love to have the honor of being a part of your august body.

KS makes 1 phone call: To B10: We have been offered membership in the Pac. We believe athletically and academically we are the best fit with the history and traditions of the B10. Please let us know if this is possible.

Note that the B10 is a little boxed in. I don't believe they are going to raid the ACC. There are 5 potential B10 members out there (all AAU members): Rutgers: gets them on NYC metro area cable systems. Rutgers joins the B10 in a heartbeat.
Pitt: gets them a HUGE media market, and adds a nice rivalry with Penn St (who is not happy about this turn of events). Notre Dame: Its decision time. My bet: they, Texas and BYU all agree to play each other, they like playing basketball against the other Catholic universities and don't like sharing revenue. So they say NO - more on this later. Missouri Kansas

No one else. Syracuse lost AAU membership. UConn is not a member. WVU is not a member.

Here is where it gets interesting: Lets pretend that Notre Dame says NO, and STOP CALLING, the B10 is free to add KS and MO.

If Notre Dame says YES or HOLD THAT THOUGHT 3 YEARS, but we'll have our non-football programs play in the B10, then the B10 decides:

Do I want Kansas or Missouri.

Who gets you the largest media market?


Who makes Illinois happy? Kansas (no recruiting against MO in St Louis area).

Who makes Nebraska happy? Kansas (better travel partner)

Who makes the football powers happy, who need another patsy? Kansas

Who elevates basketball and gets them on TV more often? Kansas

That is how Kansas ends up in the B10. But the Pac has to force the situation.

If Texas/Ttch go w/OU to the Pac, we may end up in the B10 some day, but we're probably spending a few years in the Big East first.


Ben Kliewer 2 years, 7 months ago

Pure speculation: I hear tell of the Big East dropping their basketball-only schools and going with a conference of all football/basketball schools only. There's also been that whole speculation of the BEast and ACC combining (minus a couple ACC members to the SEC) to form their own power conference, with East/West splits to make a football/basketball behemoth that would be able to have lucrative TV contracts that would rival the other power conferences that the PAC and SEC would eventually form.

My theory? It is inevitable that there will be at least three or four 16-team Power Conferences, split into geographical divisions. A few years down the road, because of their lucrative TV contracts, they would be able to afford absorbing smaller TV market schools, like old CUSA and WAC schools etc. Eventually, these conferences would become four 30-team Super Conferences with insane TV deals, split into five six-team subdivisions, based on geography and football power. Then, in an even bigger money-grub, they will combine into two 60-team Mega Conferences of an East Conference and West Conference, each with five 12-team subdivisions, each with their own TV sub-contract, and each subdivision split into two six-team sub-subdivisions. Then, down the road, the two Mega Conferences will combine into one 120-school Ultimate Conference and they will divide teams into sub-divisions of eight to 12 teams, such as the PAC-12 division, the Big East division and the Atlantic Coast division. Then, there will be a money grub for TV revenues, and there will be a "Divisional Realignment" switching teams to different divisions... You get my point...


William Blake 2 years, 7 months ago

dannylandulf (anonymous) replies…

The Big Ten, the PAC, and the SEC don't NEED Texas. They are going to have to drop their unequal revenue sharing to join any of those conferences.

That's my opinion, too. UT exploited the Big 12 because the Big 12 was (and is) mismanaged... but in the end, their efforts ended up collapsing the league.

No one ever replied to my question... is UT (and their Longhorn Network) really a positive addition to most leagues?

UT's focus on self-interest may be a bit over the top for most schools in most leagues. What school looks forward to being stampeded by the Longhorns and their pro-style athletic/media program? What school wants to see an outside team enter their league and immediately have a competitive edge?


manginorh00lz 2 years, 7 months ago

He needs to be calling the PAC offices every hour, on the hour.


jcjayhawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Don't assume that if we end up in the Pac12 or any other conference that we are doomed to lose in all sports except bball. If after the shuffle kstate is relegated to a weaker conference then they can no longer recruit at our level. Without having to split all the in-state kids KU is now that much stronger. That might not put us on par with Florida or Texas but it gives us an edge that Nebraska and Missouri enjoy in not having to recruit against anyone in state. In over a year of discussion on this topic I haven't seen anyone talk about that. Kstate's loss as a football power is our gain and the same goes for volleyball, womens bball, etc.


jgkojak 2 years, 7 months ago

1 scenerio, outlandish, I heard some people talking about:

Texas and Notre Dame want to be partners - they enhance one-another's status.

Notre Dame has no interest in joining the B12. They would join the Big 10 if they ever joined a conference.

So Texas jettisons Oklahoma and offer a 2-fer to the Big 10: Texas and Notre Dame, but as a travel partner, you have to bring Kansas, oh, AND Texas and ND get to keep their own network deals.

That would make the B10 THE premier football (Texas and Nebraska + Ohio St, etc) and basketball (Kansas + current B10 schools) conference and have them in every market in Texas/KS/NE/half of MO/etc


glb1110 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt, Thank you!!! I have been following you hourly now for days. I am sooo sick of people putting sports into this. (example- we should go to the BE because of basketball, Pac12 for comfort.) I know this is all about the MONEY. Which conference takes us because of what we bring financially on top of our AAU credit and great basketball team. What conference brings the better financial stability to our School and State? What do we offer besides our ties with the Kansas City network? I am in favor of the big ten for the fact MU will go there and I will actually be able to watch the game. Pac16 means we watch basketball games at 10 pm and 12pm et. instead of 6pm and 8pm..


ahpersecoachingexperience 2 years, 7 months ago

Gawd, the more I think about this the more upset I get. This whole article is total spin coming from kuad and out of Taits finger tips. Wanting you guys to believe that an accepted offer into the big east would be a good thing because it's the right thing to do. Costing us millions of dollars because it's the right thing to do. Essentially doing nothing because it's the right thing to do. When what should be going on is the exact opposite.

First! We should of jumped last summer with CO, but hind site. More recently we should of been one of the first schools to come out and say we would consider any and all options, and yes have Bill Self say it. Say we would love an invite to the PAC. Drum up excitement from the PAC schools and their fans about Kansas basketball and administrators get the kc market. That way when UT says we want TT to come their is some "what about Kansas" questions.

The problem with this administration is they have no savvy. They dont realize Kansas is a national brand. They don't realize that as much as it is all about football it's also about name brand and ours is better than almost anyone's in the Big 12. "LETC" needs to realize he is a bigger dog now and needs to start acting like such.


dynamitehawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Seriously, Matt - this is award winning coverage. You've been in live-blog mode for weeks, and basically predicted this to happen. In fact, this would be Hollywod $hit if you can get Ashley Judd to make out in Times Square before our game with Kentucky and, post it to you tube with a Nelly Country Grammar backdrop... Well done.


rob4lb 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt- I agree with your premise that KU appears to be playing the realignment game well given the relatively weak hand it has with poor football teams and being in an area of low population.

At this point, is the Big 12 even worth saving? Gary Pinkel framed it perfectly when he said that the Big 12 has issues that other conferences do not have. It seems like those issues will always be there as long as the Big 12 is there.

Can you comment about the importance of academic and cultural fit? The comments about KU football being more competitive in the Big East would seem to be of secondary importance. It would seem that Big 10 and Pac 12 are better fits.

The Big East is nice dooms day option, but other the last few days, I hear that Pitt, WVa, Syracuse and Rutgers are potential candidates for other conferences. These are the strongest members of the conference. If any of them leave, a weak conference becomes weaker.

Thanks again Matt for keeping us updated.


Steve Gantz 2 years, 7 months ago

According to the Chicago Tribune on Sunday, their commish sounds very content with 12 teams. Of course, I guess he could just be holding his cards close too.


Randy Bombardier 2 years, 7 months ago

Good article, Matt. You are the pride of the LJW. KU must remain dignified. The AD deserves no grief no matter what happens. He cannot make it happen. Besides we know just because it is not being reported does not mean that discussions aren't taking place. Maybe we just have more class and don't leak these discussions like some institutions.

Despite knowing this, I still am anxious. Have little confidence in Big12. Can it survive without OU? If OU goes, there goes OSU. Without those two and without Texas? So, it seems like a waiting game again. Just hope it is over and done this year.


ahpersecoachingexperience 2 years, 7 months ago

1) stop calling the big east a power conference 2) you know that movie is fiction...right?!? 3) even if we stay in the big12, we still do not have equal revenue sharing. There is no point in being a "have not" in a conference. 4) "LETC" is so far out of his league it's ridiculous!


Daniel Kennamore 2 years, 7 months ago

Sport's Illustrated says that A&M's SEC invite could be extended tonight, and officially accepted tomorrow.


LAJayhawk 2 years, 7 months ago


I definitely agree with you that the non-public stance that Zenger and KU is taking is by far the best route, and I agree with you on the reasons why: KU is what it is, and a conference will take them or not. Sullying their name just makes their case weaker. They need to open up lines of communication, but not push it too hard. There's a fine line to walk there.

That being said, what is your feeling on how KU has dealt with the Big 10? Do you believe they've at least been in contact? There certainly is a difference between begging and simply suggesting what KU has to offer. Do you believe Zenger and Gray-Little have done that? Have you heard from any sources on that? Big 12 adding teams in the best case scenario, IMO, but Big 10 would be the 2nd best for a variety of reasons (academics, competitiveness in both major sports, location, etc). I would then say Pac 16 and then Big East as the last option.

Just curious what you are hearing and/or feeling about contact with the Big 10, even if it would be a long shot. I've read nothing on it from anywhere.


LogicMan 2 years, 7 months ago

The Big East is going to be cherry-picked, in the east, by the ACC, the B1G, and maybe the SEC, and probably very soon. So no stability there for us. When you can't beat 'em, join 'em in picking at the bones of the Big East.

So if OU and OSU hit the road soon, and if we don't immediately get picked up by the B1G or PAC-12, then we should stay in the Big XII. UT might even stay with it, or go independent. Then we go cherry-picking ourselves from the MWC, the Big East, and elsewhere. And definitely go to 12 teams, and maybe 14 or 16.

If a Big XII dissolution vote becomes likely, let schools go without penalty in exchange for no vote so that we retain this above option. And then immediately vote to move the office back to KC.


Chuck Woodling 2 years, 7 months ago

Bottom line: Kansas desperately needs to align itself with a conference where it can be competitive in football on a consistent basis. No way that'll happen in the Big 12. Or Pac-whatever. Or Big 10. That leaves the Big East. Kansas at least has a chance in the Big East. I'm tired of all this mumbo-jumbo about KU wanting to remain in the Big 12. Let's be pragmatic, cut the crap and get the hell out of the Big 12 now.


86finalfour 2 years, 7 months ago

Competitively, I think Big East is the best route for KU. It would be an upgrade to their bball program, IMO, and they would have a better chance at winning a football conf title and getting to a BCS bowl game again.

Out west, I see them struggling in almost all sports except bball. I admit it sounds nice having Kansas' name next to Stanford, Cal, UCLA,etc. But I think that will wear off after years of losing.

I also like the passion of basketball in the big east. And I haven't even touched on how much more the big east would prepare KU for the big dance.


addlime 2 years, 7 months ago

Thanks everyone for your analyses regarding the potential conference re-alignments. I haven't really understood the bashing of the Big East until now. Is anyone out there even just a little excited about the prospect of KU playing in a conference that has easily been the best basketball conference in the country the past few years? I can see why academically, and culturally its not a good fit. And I really appreciate the speculation about BIg East instability. But it seems like due to the region it primarily covers, and the potential for a big payday if it gets 12 football schools, it could really prosper in the future. Is this a naive point of view? I know that winning a million consecutive conference titles is fun and all, but I have to wonder if playing in such a mediocre conference (yes, I think the Big 12 has been overrated many years) has helped KU to underachieve come tournament time. Obviously, maintaining the Big 12 is best case scenario. But I'm wondering if I'm alone in when I fancifully imagine playing UConn, Syracuse, Pitt, and Georgetown on a regular basis.


texashawk10 2 years, 7 months ago

If the UT turning down the PAC 12 and talking with the ACC rumors are true, then I would venture a guess that the PAC 12 becomes KU's most likely destination should OU decide to head out west. Without Texas, Texas Tech has no shot at the PAC 12, which would likely mean that OU, OSU, KU, and MU would be 4 teams going to the PAC 12 conference.

I don't think the Big 10 will be an option for KU unless the Big 10 is rejected by eastern schools. Notre Dame officials deciding joining the Big 10 is the only way for ND football to survive in the new era of college athletics. I believe the Big 10 will look east for the other 3 schools because they want to add TV markets and a combination of Pitt-Maryland does that by adding DC (9th), Pittsburgh (23rd), and Baltimore (26th). The 16th spot would then come down to Missouri, Virginia, and Rutgers. I believe the Big 10 would choose to add Virginia out of those three schools because UVA is always considered a top 10 public school. Notre Dame does a better job than Rutgers of adding NYC, and Missouri has already been rejected which doesn't lead me to believe they would be considered this time around either.

The only way KU and KState end up together would be a move to the Big East or if the Big 12 stays together. The Big East has to be the fall back plan I would guess if the Big 12 falls apart and KU can't go west.


Hank Cross 2 years, 7 months ago

SZ is right to follow the Don Corleone's advice and never let anyone outside the family know what he is thinking. As long as calls are being made and taken, that's all that needs to happen at this point. At some point public posturing may be needed to obtain leverage in negotiations, but not now.

Hopefully, SZ recognizes that Option 1 is his only option. KU didn't stand at some altar and swear before God that it would remain faithful to KSU, MU or anyone else. All of this is just arm's length transactions between sophisiticated, powerful enterprises. It's not a sin, evil, or immoral to break ties with a conference or another university. It is only a good business decision or a bad one.

BGL's statement hits the right notes too. Lip service to the obvious preference, but a greater understanding about what really is ahead.


trey 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt, love reading your blog and opinion. You always bring sincere insight and it's often unique. But on a couple of points...

This isn't an either/or proposition for our AD. He can both keep a low profile publicly, AND aggressively work to get a KU invite with the PAC or BIG behind the scenes. My fear is that if we wait for the other shoe to drop on the Big12, which is "any" team announcing they're moving, then the Big12 is toast and we will be in a weakened position. OU may then be able to dictate that OSU comes with them to the PAC. And Texas may be able to dictate that TTech goes with them to the PAC.

If all the PAC slots are taken, we're then down to praying that the BIG invites a MU/KU combo, or we end up in the West division of the very short-term Big East.

I just don't see how the Big East will make it in Football. To think that the Big East will make it, you'd have to believe that either the BIG or ACC aren't going to expand by targeting some of these Big East schools (Rutgers, Syracuse, Pitt, UConn, West Virginia), or that these schools wouldn't go. They'd be fools not to go.

A Big East football conference with KU, K-State, Iowa State, Cinci, Louisville, USF and TCU is not big-time. In either football or bball. And note, MU is not going to end up in the Big East.

I'm very concerned if we're thinking the Big East is a good fall-back option, so we can wait on OU and Texas to decide if they're going to stick in the Big12.


Hatter8333 2 years, 7 months ago

I am curious why we don't hear much about the ACC? If the SEC takes one of their teams I believe KU would be a logical choice for them to look at. ESPN would love it from a basketball standpoint and we could compete in football.


eddiesuttonschoolofdriving 2 years, 7 months ago

Thanks for the updates Matt. I have a question though. My preference would be for KU to end up in the Big 10 (Pac 10 second choice) because I think it would be best for the fans and athletes for travel and development of rivalries. Also, the Big 10 is a good fit academically as Kansas is certainly on par with Minnesota, Indiana, or Illinois and we would benefit from the association with Big 10 research institutions and their research money.
However, I keep hearing that the Big 10 is not considering Kansas, but may be considering Missouri. Is this accurate, and if so, why? Is football really the reason? I understand that KU's football facilities/crowds/tradition aren't top tier, but are they really that much different that Mizzou's (or those at Northwestern, Minnesota, or Indiana)? It would seem KU has an edge academically over Missouri as well.


DenverBuzz 2 years, 7 months ago

I've seen really only 2 options: KU join another conference, or hang with the Big 12 (er, 9...or 4...). Perhaps there are other options Has there been any talk of poaching schools to join the Big 12? Like, Colorado St., Air Force, SMU, TCU? CSU and AFA would tap the Colorado market, at least.
Or if UT, OU, OSU leave, maybe revert to Big 8 with KU, K-State, Mizzou, ISU, CSU, AFA, TT, Baylor?


FLJHK 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt: Like others, I can't tell you how much I appreciate your updates and over-the-top efforts on this matter. Thank you.

I really like your perspective in this piece. I do think it's critical that KU hold to its honor and take the high road.

More on my academic bias in these considerations because I think it is a major factor. The following are breakdowns, by conference, regarding membership in the AAU (American Association of Universities).

AAU membership is by no means the say all, end all of academic integrity. Certainly there are many outstanding universities that are excellent schools while not being an AAU member. Notre Dame is perhaps the best example. But it is a very important credential, and there is a natural affinity among members. AAU membership means you are regarded as a major research university; you share much in common with other members.

Regarding existing major athletic conferences, AAU membership is distributed as follows:

Big 10 11 of 12 are members. Nebraska is the only exception, having lost their AAU membership credential shortly after their Big 10 invite.

Pac 12 8 of 12 are members. Non-members are the three schools with “State” as their last name (WSU, OSU and ASU) and Utah.

Existing Big 12 5/10 In: KU, MU, ISU, TAM, UT, ISU. (It was 5/12 when CU and NU were members).

ACC 5/12 In: G. Tech, UNC, Duke, Virginia, Maryland.

SEC 2/10 In: Florida, Vanderbilt

Big East 2/16 In: Pitt, Rutgers. (Syracuse, like Nebraska, recently lost AAU membership).

This, plus geography and culture, is largely why I so favor a Big 10 invite. But given their hesitation, it is also why I would support a Pac 12 invite.

With the exception of the SEC, AAU membership is a measure of conference stability. While market size and football prowess are (regrettably) likely more significant factors in current day debates, it is still a considerable factor.

It also explains various other factors. It is why Pitt and Rutgers are in such an enviable position. They bring both market size and academic integrity into the equation. They will likely be solicited by both the Big 10 and ACC.

It explains why the ACC is far more stable than the Big East, and why they are likely to emerge as the 4th “superconference.”

It is a significant factor in why KU and MU remain attractive targets, and why the Big East would quickly invite MU, ISU, KU (with little brother KSU) into the conference.

If the trend toward 4 16-team super-conferences continues, the Big 10 is short-sighted not to pursue KU and MU. If a Pac-12 invite was to happen in the meantime, KU would be foolish to foolish to reject it. The Big 10 is a better option, but they would need to act quickly and there is no indication they will do so.


Tony Bandle 2 years, 7 months ago

Matt, you have the class, professionalism and guts to face up and respond to us posters in real time.

Whether I agree with you or not, just the fact that you take us seriously puts you wwaayy ahead of all the other journalists except maybe Jesse, who has a similar style.

Thanks for your insight and your truly are Matt "The Great" Tait!!


Daniel Kennamore 2 years, 7 months ago

I don't think anyone doubts that there is an unannounced deal for KU to land in the Big East, it's that a Big East conference will be the weakest and least stable of the BCS conferences after a Big 12 implosion.

When the Big Ten expands (and they will, whether it be this year or a few down the line)...the most likely schools they'll poach are guessed it, the Big East. So if they take 2 or 4 teams from the Big East we could end up in the exact same boat that we are in now. This is why so many of us are pushing for a move to a stable conference and see the Big East as a scary and unstable 'worst case' option.


Justin Lindsley 2 years, 7 months ago

I think KU is doing a great job publicly. Look at Stoops. He keeps opening his mouth and making headlines. If Oklahoma is bluffing to try to gain power they may still be responsable in the end for the implosion of the Big 12. Everytime someone speaks it casts doubt over everyone else. Everyone should just shut up and talk behind closed doors.

Except the Big 12 office. How disfunctional are they? Beebe has "comment" thus far on this huge development. I think if and that seems to be a big if the Big 12 stays put, Beebe should be replaced by a stronger leader!


hawk82 2 years, 7 months ago

Jason K.'s right. But it will be the Pac-18 or Pac-20. Count on it.


Fred Davis 2 years, 7 months ago

I'm mystified - and I'm not alleging Tait is doing this, nor am I quite sold on the Jerry Maguire analogy - as to why people are convinced that Zenger isn't doing anything about what conference KU will end up in. I know, people think "this is what made Lew Perkins so great" and hey, I'm a Lew guy, but what is Zenger supposed to do? Update everyone every hour on the progress of the Big 12 and where KU's headed? These are not the kind of negotiations that you want dragged into public, and I'd rather my AD - as a Jayhawk Alum - stay mum in front of the camera while working his magic behind the scenes. As Tait pointed out - Zenger is a football coach, but he's also a journalist, and he's a businessman. So make no mistake about it, if there's one thing this man knows - it's what he wants the opposing team to see, what he wants the fans to see, and what he wants shareholders and investors to see. All the while he's got all the information he needs and he'll share it with the rest of us on a need to know basis. Finally - he's a Kansan. He knows what KU means to alums, this region and the state. KU is going to be fine, and The Zeng is going to make sure of it... In Zeng We Trust


5to6 2 years, 7 months ago

I also agree with the premise. If we find ourselves in a bad position in a few weeks, then it is fair to criticize Zenger. Until then, he's doing the smart thing by being discreet, and there's no reason for people to panic about perceived inactivity.


jayhawkinmullen 2 years, 7 months ago

My biggest fear is that Zenger will not be able to pull away from K-State if the opportunity presents itself. I believe that he is an honest man maybe too honest for his position. That is precisely why it scares me to think he will more than stick up for his Alma Mater K-State and in the process take down KU with them . If he is saying to conferences that KU and K-State are a package deal then we are screwed unless we go the Beast which I for one don't want anything to do with.


jgkojak 2 years, 7 months ago

Agree with the premise of the article.

But as for substance:

We know for sure KU has a spot in the Big East.

But for most of us, that would be a let down, a bad choice, and not what KU deserves.

(Does anybody really think the Big East survives this re-alignment?)

KU's spot should be in the Big 10. I understand what you're saying about the dignified posture of KU in this circumstance. I get it and appreciate it.

But most of us do not view the Big East, even if they agree to split the football champ. game with Arrowhead and Jersey, an acceptable alternative.

And most of us believe KU to the Big East sells KU short.


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