Realignment Today: What's the status with Conference Realignment Round 3 and how does it affect KU and the Big 12?


2:57 p.m. Update:

OK, so during today's KU football chat and, really, most of the day on Twitter, people were clamoring for a percentage wheel of some kind. I didn't really think I had a great one regarding this topic yet, but I can give you something. Here goes: Percentage chance predicting the time of realignment drama we'll have this summer...

  1. Steady Eddie. There will be some action, but it won't take over our souls - 60%
  2. Def-Con 5. Fast and furious, yet again - 21%
  3. Other. You never know, you know? - 13%
  4. None. Everything will remain calm and quiet - 6%

Stay tuned...

Original Post, 10:28 a.m.

Tomorrow marks the two-year anniversary of the first conference realignment blog I ever wrote for this web site. In some ways it seems like a decade ago and in others it seems like just yesterday.

The question on everyone’s mind today, though, is will future realignment blogs be a part of tomorrow?

Good question.

Since penning that first realignment blog — which wrapped with this: “I do know this; change is coming, and, although it might be tough to accept at first, it could be in KU’s best interest.” — I wrote more than 25 others and received well over a million page views on all of it combined. That’s just incredible and it speaks to the passion and devotion you all have for your KU sports.

During the past couple of weeks, as the Big 12 Conference replaced interim commissioner Chuck Neinas with new boss Bob Bowlsby and rumors of Realignment Round 3 began to surface, I found myself questioning whether we’d be going through something like that again this summer. My gut tells me no, but my mind tells me to stay on high alert. I will.

If any realignment type issues come up this summer, I don’t expect they will reach the levels we saw during the past two summers, when the country’s most powerful conferences made major moves and threatened to make more while bringing college athletics to the brink of complete chaos and restructuring.

The Big East, with its interim commissioner and a larger but less impressive membership roster, appears to be the most vulnerable conference to further poaching. The Big 12 once occupied that spot, but the conference now appears to be on stable ground with Bowlsby in the front office and new TV deals bringing the promise of bookoo bucks. The league is close to reaching an official extension with ESPN that would run for 13 years and be worth $1.3 billion.

Beyond that, I can’t see any of the 10 Big 12 schools wanting out. I suppose there’s a chance that the ever-wandering eyes of Texas and Oklahoma could stray once again, but those schools seem happy with the Big 12’s current direction and the league now has language in place that makes it much tougher to get out the way Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Texas A&M did during the past two years. Besides that, once the new TV deals become official, the granting of rights pledge will increase from its current mark of six years to 13 years, a strong sign of each school’s commitment to the league. After all, the granting of right locks the schools to the league because if any school were to leave it would not take with it complete control of its media rights.

If anything, the Big 12 may go on the offensive and look to expand its membership back to 12 teams or perhaps even more. That’s been the hottest rumor of late, with Clemson and Florida State taking the lead. If there’s any truth at all to those rumors, which I’m still trying to decipher, then it’s clear that the ACC is in a precarious position, as well.

Here are a couple of links that cover the topic of FSU and Clemson to the Big 12:

One thing that continues to force me to scratch my head is how, or perhaps why, Louisville has fallen off the map? Remember, not long ago, Louisville was deemed by most as the next most likely candidate to join the Big 12 after TCU and West Virginia were added last fall. Heck, Louisville nearly jumped in line ahead of West Virginia.

I’m not saying it’s a sure thing that Louisville is going to join the Big 12. But I’d give the Cardinals as much of a shot as Clemson or Florida State. In fact, I think you could make as strong a case for Rutgers (think New York market) and Louisville to be the Big 12’s 11th and 12th teams as you could for Clemson and FSU.

For one, the Big East is in peril and even though it continues to point toward “a bright future,” some of the teams it’s adding simply are not that attractive. Two, with the BCS set to undergo major changes and the concept of automatic-qualifiers hanging in the balance, some of those schools that looked at joining the Big East for the easier road to BCS gold might elect to back out while there’s still time. The most obvious example of that would be Boise State.

I’ve been told all along and over and over that the Big 12 is content with 10 teams and does not see any reason to expand, therein spreading the television revenue thinner. So until I hear otherwise, I’m going to stick with that. Sources continue to say that the league is happy with its current membership, but there is the belief that if the right teams came along and were interested the Big 12 would consider expansion.

Either way, with new leadership in place and the league determined to never again go through what it went through these past two summers, it only makes sense that the Big 12 would look into being more proactive this time around — just in case.

Many out there, including the blog below, are convinced that the league will add at least two more teams sometime this summer. I can’t say that would surprise me. Then again, after what I’ve seen and heard during the past two years, nothing would surprise me when it comes to conference realignment.

Stay tuned...

And while you do, here are a couple of quick-hitters that I’ll continue to be tracking as we head into the summer.

• The Big 12 spring meetings will begin May 30 in Kansas City, Mo. These meetings were hot during the past two summers and it’s possible — extremely likely, even — that the topic of expansion will be kicked around quite a bit during the meetings. I’ll be over there.

• The contract of acting commissioner Chuck Neinas expires on June 30.

• TCU and West Virginia officially will be added to the conference in July. • Why would ACC schools Clemson and FSU be interested in joining the Big 12? As was the case in 2011, the ACC’s football schools are rumored to be tired of the conference catering to basketball powers North Carolina and Duke and adding hoops schools Syracuse and Pitt.

• BYU is not dead in all of this. Neither is Notre Dame. Yes, Notre Dame.

• As it stands today, Florida State is the key piece in all of this expansion talk and the Seminoles will have to be the ones who come calling. The Big 12 will not go to them. Similarly, Clemson will not even look west without knowing that Florida State is doing the same. I’ve heard that FSU wants in but wants the Big 12 to expand to 14 and would like the conference to consider adding Miami, Georgia Tech and possibly others instead of the Big East bunch.


Kyle Rohde 6 years, 1 month ago

Soren Petro had a guy on the other day that has covered the SEC/ACC for 20+ years, and his feelings on Florida State were very clear. Academics are a much bigger deal in these decisions than fans know or will admit, and that there's not a chance in hell Florida State would leave the ACC for the Big XII. The ACC is, by far, the best academic conference of the BCS ones, with fantastic schools like Duke, UNC, Wake, Virginia, etc. and Florida State has no interest in being associated with Texas Tech, OSU, KSU, etc. Using the US News college rankings, the ACC has an average ranking of around 44 in the country; the Big XII is 100+. Beyond that, it makes zero sense geographically or culturally - "hey fans, forget driving to Miami or North Carolina; get excited for AMES, IOWA!" I can't imagine a scenario where the Big XII gets Florida State.

I agree with you, Matt, in that it's idiotic for the Big XII to be dismissing Louisville, apparently. The TV ratings show that it's consistently the BEST college sports market in the country; it's a good geographic and cultural fit, and would raise the stature of the basketball in the Big XII even more. Louisville should absolutely be the 11th school, IMO, along with BYU and someone else.

The someone else is the tough part but I like the Rutgers idea.

Rock_Chalk_NYC 6 years, 1 month ago

These are ATHLETIC conferences not academic conferences. One thing we ALL should have learned over the last 2 years of this, its ALL ABOUT THE MONEY.

As for the rest of your post, I agree with ya, good insight.

John Randall 6 years, 1 month ago

Athletic, Academic – they are both, and while the money on the athletic side seems huge, it actually is only a fraction of the total picture. The University, not the Athletic Dept. makes the decision on conference affiliation.

The recent (2 years back) Big12 had a much wider apparent spread academically than any conference except the BEast, but that was because the media is hung up on Ranking instead of Rating.

Two schools whose Ratings are too close to be considered significantly different may well be Ranked fifty or more places apart, simply because there are so many other schools within a very narrow range of the Ratings. All of those schools should be looked at as academically comparable, but if one of them has the chance to publicize a 'top 50 Ranking', do you think their Admissions department will defer to the fact that there's no real difference?

Todd 6 years, 1 month ago

I agree with your post on principle, but I think all the movement so far has proven that cultural similarities or rivalries or geography doesn't enter into their thinking any more if they can get money elsewhere. Missouri doesn't fit into the SEC geographically. Granted, we on this board are biased, but I really don't see the fans at Alabama or Florida getting all pumped up to go to Columbia, MO. Boise State doesn't fit into the Big East in any way, shape or form.

If academics really entered into it, then I could see your point on FSU going nowhere being true. But all the other stuff falls to the wayside I think. From an athletics point of view, since FSU is a football school it makes more sense to associate with schools like Texas and Oklahoma than Duke or UNC.

That being said, I don't think they're going anywhere unless they're just absolutely fed up with the ACC.

Wildcat54 6 years, 1 month ago

I think there is more to the academics than most think. Here in Champaign there was reported a fair amount of dissatisfaction with Nebraska's academics by the B1G faculty and administration. The paper published several apologias to try to convince people that Nebraska was a good fit both for football and academics. These articles ended up reading contrived and unconvincing. I would guess that Nebraska is about as low down the academic status range that the B1G is willing to go. As far as I can remember, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri were pretty much equal in the US News ranking, something around 100. Others may have more current data. So I would not totally dismiss rankings in these discussions. For the University leaders, they need to be aware of whom they wake up in the morning

JhawkalumJB 6 years, 1 month ago

Big10 has the most academic clout, for sure!! All AAU member schools (except Nebraska). Check the national rankings, most BIG10 schools are high up the list.

milehighhawk 6 years, 1 month ago

What I was going to post. B10 beats ACC academically without a doubt.

John Randall 6 years, 1 month ago

According to your opinion, to some 50-yr old preconceptions, or to something that actually is pertinent? The schools in the B10 are not immune to Rust Belt realities, after all.

Hell, even Colorado or Missouri can find a couple of academic disciplines they aren't embarrassed to have compared with other State Universities east of the continental divide, but Nebraska (recently an AAU member, likely soon to be again) leaves them in the dust as institutions of higher learning.

R2D2 6 years, 1 month ago

Big 12 gets more money if we add more teams. ACC was able to get more money per school, even with the addition of Pitt and 'Cuse so we will not be diluting the money pool. Just not enough room in the new era of BCS for 5 power conferences and football schools like FSU & Clemson will want to be a part of the festivites. Big 12 needs to get to a playoff again to have a chance to consistantly get represented in the new playoff system. The ACC admittedly and by the looks of their newest ESPN deal are stil focusing on basketball as their exposure for basketball with the new deal is much greater. ACC football is being relegated to playing friday night football which is another problem with football schools. One thing I think you can count on is that their will be more expansion this summer and it will be centered around the Big 12 as the conference will no longer sit back and watch as we have done the past two years!

Jeff Bandle 6 years, 1 month ago

Yep, R2 nails it. I read a pretty compelling argument yeasterday for FSU/Clemson to the Big XII because they could gain as much as 10 million more with potential for a lot more if they get into the college football playoff. If the ACC isn't an AQ for the playoff or even looked at as a possible regular, that is a lot of money to leave on the table.

madamhawk 6 years, 1 month ago

I need a percentage wheel on this info!

tman1991 6 years, 1 month ago

Yeah Matt you cant drop the realignment articles without a % wheel of something!!

JhawkalumJB 6 years, 1 month ago

Enough with the percentage wheel pleas.... With the info. Matt gives in the articles you could just as accurately form one for yourself.

Robert Brown 6 years, 1 month ago

I missed the conference realignment discussions. I have a couple of observations:

  1. The new BCS format almost seems to beg for the formation of FOUR superconferences. You could almost see conference championships be the Elite 8 of College Football with the four conference winners advancing to the BCS championship games. Does that force Notre Dame to join a conference?

  2. The new TV contracts put the Big 12 in the same territory as the PAC 12 and Big 10. I would guess that the SEC will get somewhere around $5M per school more when they renegotiate. The Big 12 has advantages to get additional revenue these other conference do not have and that is to expand and have a conference championship game.

  3. As for expansion candidates, it would seem the Big 12 would need to increase its Eastern footprint and going after some of the ACC teams, who can't be pleased with their new TV contract, makes sense to me. I was never a fan of addition TCU, who now has a drug scandal, and I'm not sure Louisville helps the conference.

  4. Let's say there is a mad scramble and Notre Dame joins a conference like the Big 10. Does the signing away of TV rights prevent KU from ever going to the Big 10 should they decide they need to further expand?

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

The other big advantage that the Big12 has over the SEC, B1G and PAC12 is the Tier 3 TV Rights are the property of the schools and not the conference. Kansas makes $8 million per year from our Tier 3 rights. Texas with the Longhorn Network makes another $15 million. Teams like Notre Dame and FSU would have great possible avenues open to them they wouldn't have in the B1G, SEC and PAC12.

It is the issue that almost killed the Big12 when Nebraska and Texas AM left. It will be issue that makes the conference appealing to high-profile schools in the future.

Brian Skelly 6 years, 1 month ago

It's hard to know whats rumor created by the umpteen "experts" (anyone with a blog) or rumor that is sourced legitimately. That line maybe pretty thin to begin with, so hard to know for sure.

My guess is if there is a lot of smoke out there (im looking at you FSU) there has to be some fire. Does it mean anything substantial at this point? Uhm, no. Could it? @#% yea. Im not sure what to make of it to be honest. Why would Clemson and FSU want to be out on an island geographically? If you hauled in more schools (FSU, Clemson, Ga Tech, Miami, Maryland are the ACC schools talked about) and were willing to go to 16 (4 pods of 4 teams) to create an "Big 16 South" or something it might make sense. But I dont see the logic of FSU and Clemson coming with the structure there is now. I just dont.

Of course, as we've seen $$$ rules the day. If the financial differential is so vast that the schools are foolish not to look at it, then its hard to not see more movement. We'll see.

Im still a believer that they will stick to the "unless it grows the pie" idea they arent going to just be plucking teams --- something that will be the Big East's demise.

Im good at 10 unless we bump up to 16 with seismic shifts taking place -- Notre Dame included.

As always Matt, great stuff and great links.

Steve Hillyer 6 years, 1 month ago

initially I was very skeptical about this FSU rumor but I'm stsarting to wonder if there isn't something to it, I also wonder if the delay in finaiizing the B12/ESPN deal is that expansion may be occurring soon. I've never been sold on Louisville, I don't think they add much value to a conference especially in fb, is the addition of UL going to increase ESPN's and Fox's payout to the B12, I doubt it. From what I understand UL's following is not very significant outside of Louisville and the city itself is split between UK and UL. I also don't think it is a good cultural fit, it is mostly a commuter school with a terrible academic rating. ND and BYU are the only unattached schools worth going after and I just don't see the B12 being able to poach someone from one of the power conferences.

Toto_the_great 6 years, 1 month ago

With 1,000,000 page views, I might have missed this question if it was asked, but how does this whole realignment affect my pocketbook? Follow me... the increased TV deals mean that companies (Pepsi, Bud, Hardees) will have to pay more for commercials, right? If not, TV companies could loose money, which doesn't seem likely. So if my favorites have to pay more for a commercial, then they are going to charge more for their products, right? Pepsi, Bud, and Hardees don't want to loose money. Am I crazy to assume this?

Ben Kane 6 years, 1 month ago

i don't think that is necessarily true.

  1. they could just air more commercials.
  2. i don't know how they price out commercials but it is likely a priced over a wide spectrum of airings not just say during big12 games.
  3. also I believe commercial prices are generally based on ratings not expenses.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

I do think the new BCS Final Four Format will promote the growth of 4 Super Conferences. If they go to the 'Champion' version even more so. It will open the door to a 16-team B1G, 16-team SEC, 16-teamBig12 and a 12-team PAC12. The ACC and Big East will go back to being basketball conferences and playing in minor bowel games. The big questions are Who is IN? and Who is OUT?

The PAC would expand if there were anyschools west of the Rockies that were decent and not ending in 'BYU' or previously a Junior College.

SeaJHawk 6 years, 1 month ago

Matt what are your thoughts on "bookoo" vs. beaucoup? Thanks for your great articles!!

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

Mat is an Urban Dictionary kind of guy.

My boss just walked into my office as I was posting. I pushed POST without thinking. Sorry.

Matt Tait 6 years, 1 month ago

You nailed it. I looked it up earlier and found that and went with it. Didn't quite seem right, but I just wanted to get the blog posted.

Good catch, though, SeaJHawk. It is indeed supposed to be beaucoup.

XEPCT 6 years, 1 month ago

well since francophone people and anglophone people pronounce the word considerably differently ... I don't know if your spelling is necessarily wrong per se

whitechocolate 6 years, 1 month ago

The Big 12 is now the hunter. We don't have to settle for schools we don't want. Nothing against Louisville or Cincy or Rutgers, but if FSU wants to join and take Clemson, Miami and Georgia Tech with them, I can see the appeal.

That leaves us at 14. And it wouldn't stop there, because we would be responsible for destroying the ACC. SEC & B1G picks apart the rest of the conference and we need two more to hit midnight on the doomsday clock.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

All the talk I have seen on other sites actually has the Big 12's list as containing Florida State, Clemson, Georgia Tech, Maryland and Notre Dame (long shot) so I wonder why Miami is suddenly coming into play? Especially given that Maryland would be a better school overall when it comes to media market I would imagine, not to mention they bring less controversy with them (outside of those uniforms that is).

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

Maryland is hoping the B1G comes a calling.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Which is understandable, yet sadly they will have to wait as I'm pretty sure the Big 10 will sit on their butts and wait for the golden goose egg that is the Fighting Irish.

Richard Payton 6 years, 1 month ago

Florida State and Miami are rivals. Much like Kansas and Missouri. Florida State's other rival Florida not likely to move. Florida State would prefer to move to the SEC rather than the Big 12. Presently, Florida State views academics at UNC, Duke and other ACC schools better than the Big 12 schools. Florida State moving to the Big 12 would be a long shot. The tier 3 money might interest Florida State since ACC schools money pool is set up different than the Big 12.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Well everything that I have read on sites such as SB nation (and yes I know everything is heresy at this point) point out that apparently if they jumped to the big 12 they would potentially make up to 4 million more a year and Fla St. is in desperate need of money with a lot of renovations being needed. Not to mention that Fla St and Clemson want to be in a more football centric conference than the ACC's basketball centric mindset.

Brian Skelly 6 years, 1 month ago

Problem is, there is no way in hell Florida would allow FSU to join the SEC. Never. Ever. Not going to happen. Same with South Carolina and Clemson. Which is why the talk out there is centered around FSU and Clemson. They cant "go up" to the SEC. The next best option (for football and football $$$ anyway) is the Big 12. Not just for the T1&T2 rights, but the freedom to do what they can with Tier 3 rights. FSU certainly could cash that in well. I agree with FSU's misgivings about the Big12 compared to the ACC academically. But if the $$$ are so greatly different it really isnt that big of surprise that there is talk about it.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Agreed. If there was a chance for them to join SEC then they would have joined last summer instead of misery.

Robert Brown 6 years, 1 month ago

Ideally, assuming ND is out of the picture is to add FSU, Ga Tech, Clemson and Maryland. That gets you to 14, add the following large media markets: DC-Baltimore, Atlanta, Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville. You also get a traditional power in Clemson. You keep a slot open for ND and someone else to get to 16.

Conference Championship game played each year in Dallas generates additional revenue. That would be a dream scenario. Hard to see that happening and I am not sure how strong the academic argument keeps these schools in a better academic conference. Collectively, they elevate the academic profile of the Big 12 which is now the worst of all of the Top 5 conferences which I do find marginally troubling.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

This would be a great scenario, except I don't know about the championship game being played in Dallas every year. It would likely still rotate between a few different sites such as Arrowhead. Unless some agreement is made to keep football in Dallas and Kansas plays hardball to ensure Basketball stays in KC past current contract. But that is a whole argument that I don't want to get into.

Robert Brown 6 years, 1 month ago

I don't see it ever going to Arrowhead. It's in Missouri; it's outside and not close to any of the traditional football powers. It could go to the Georgia Dome or some place in Florida. I could see Jerry Jones putting up a lot of money to make Cowboy Stadium and permanent site. I would be OK with that. It probably is the best stadium in the country. I find it hard to believe the ACC would break up which would be the case in this scenario. If these four depart, you could see the SEC picking up NC-State and Va Tech and the Big 10 pulling in Virginia, Duke and UNC, and maybe Pitt. The four remaining schools are Wake, BC, Syracuse, and Miami may have to scramble to find a home along with Rutgers and UConn.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Well in the end I don't think the whole Missouri thing will stand as I'm pretty sure that Basketball will ultimately stay at sprint because the only real competition they have is OK city because from what I hear most of the member schools hate dallas for basketball. As far as Jerry tossing money all over the place I am pretty sure you are correct on that one. Also I don't think the ACC will break up but with the rumors starting to flow now I can see them just becoming a very good basketball conference with their good football schools jumping ship to "greener" pastures.

Robert Brown 6 years, 1 month ago

If Clemson and Florida State leave, the ACC could stay at 12 or grab UConn and either Louisville or Rutgers to further strengthen basketball.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

exactly what I was thinking. All three want out of Big East at any cost necessary.

texashawk10 6 years, 1 month ago

Before the events of 2 years ago, the Big 12 had contracts in place where the football title game would be permanently in Dallas at Cowboys Stadium and the Big 12 tournament would permanently be at Sprint Center in KC. I don't know what happened to the Big 12 football championship game contract once the conference went below 12 teams and lost the game, but I find it hard to believe the title game will be played anywhere else because Texas or OU by themselves could fill that place for a football game.

bradh 6 years, 1 month ago

I was looking at a couple of forums today that were discussing Big 12 expansion and a couple quoted or linked Mr. Tait. He's the man on conference realignment, whether he wants to be or not.

Ron Prichard 6 years, 1 month ago

I love it Matt!! What started out as a very slow KU sports week (only two football articles) is now red hot again. I would love to see FSU and Clemson in the Big XII. More than either of them, I would love to see ND, but I'm not holding out too much hope for that.

Whatever happens, I always check here first. You are the best at this, Mr. Tait. Keep it coming.

Matt Tait 6 years, 1 month ago

Thanks, man. There will be slow days and weeks ahead, but I promise they won't last long and we'll do everything we can to make the summer fun and interesting.

I appreciate the kind words!

Karen Mansfield-Stewart 6 years, 1 month ago

Living in Florida I can say that getting FSU (and Clemson) would be a great addition. FSU is considered a good school with very good athletics. (Florida is the educational powerhouse in the state - not FSU). Miami could potentially be a good addition, but right now I don't see a lot of passionate fan support for Miami. Traditionally they've been good, but not much lately. Georgia Tech might be a better option than Miami.

I like the idea of an East - (mid) West conference championship and rivalries.

Jim Jackson 6 years, 1 month ago

This is about money.

Yes, academics plays a role but if the opportunity to make almost 4 million more a year presents itself, FSU will be taking a long look at the Big 12, that much we know.

If things fall through with the ACC schools, I would love to see us take grab Lousville, BYU or Rutgers. Rutgers has AAU status and the NY/ NJ market.

I do not wish to see Cincy in our conference.

Also, we need 12 teams to get a conference championshio game so I am going to assume that we will be looking to add only 2 more teams.

JhawkalumJB 6 years, 1 month ago

My personal feelings are that the BIG12 needs to be proactive and decide its future course of action... before we are forced to scramble and react to other conferences. We have had the appearance of the weaker and unstable conference because of our lack of leadership and direction. Compose a 1, 2, 5, and 10 year plans. Implement your plan. Make things happen. Create a sound environment for the schools that are in now and a conference that other teams would want to join. Have a vision of what we are and what we want to become.

Or do nothing, wait and see what everyone else does, stand around and then be forced to make short sighted decisions to just stay afloat. Yea, that will work out great... Being reactionary in this whole conference thing IS unstable, weak, and does not establish a sound foundation for the future.

I think that we should add two more teams this summer. All this wait and see reactionary approach is short sighted, and will lead to us looking stupid and fragile again.

I can only hope that our new leader has a vision of proactive strategies in the future. Our former leadership left us in a real fix.

Ben Kane 6 years, 1 month ago

good read. getting nd and fsu would be the ultimate coup. those being the only schools out there who can both generate their own tier 3 television deal. I don't like the idea of letting nd in without football unless there was a long term commitment to bring that along when their current nbc contract expires.

he explains in a quick blurb near the bottom why louisville is so suddenly out of the picture.

texashawk10 6 years, 1 month ago

Letting ND's olympic sports into the Big 12 now would be a good move because if we are headed for the 4 super conferences, ND is going to need a home or risk being put in an adverse situation and what better way for them to stay relevant nationally than in the Big 12 where they would have beat the likes of Kansas, Kansas St., ISU, WVU, and whoever else is in the conference at that point to advance to a national semi-final conference title game. That's a much easier road to go through than in either division of the Big 10 for ND and I think if we do end up with the 4 mega conferences, that ND will have a hard time getting an advantageous deal to get into a playoff like they have now with the BCS if there are only 4 conferences that matter left.

riverdrifter 6 years, 1 month ago

Thanks for that link. I keep thinking that ND will get paranoid about passing on so many conference affiliation offers and that before long they'll take one -for all sports. I think they'll go Big 10.

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

Let's hope the good people of FSU do give us a close look.

Athletically, culturally, and academically, we're a good fit, unlike with many in your current band. The big, bad SEC should have joined with you, but have repeatedly left you alone looking out from the door. Unlike them, our intentions are pure and our word is good. The strong, friendly hands of the Plains are extended your way, proud Seminoles of the Panhandle.

Al Salazar 6 years, 1 month ago

It's sad that governments are chiefed by the double tongues. There is iron in your words of death for all Comanche to see, and so there is iron in your words of life. No signed paper can hold the iron. It must come from men. The words of Ten Bears carries the same iron of life and death. It is good that warriors such as we meet in the struggle of life... or death. It shall be life.

Brian Zachary 6 years, 1 month ago

Those words were spoken to that no good Missouri outlaw Jose Wales. No place amoungst proud Jayhawkers. ;)

Brian Skelly 6 years, 1 month ago

I still like the idea of Louisville. Not as much as FSU or Clemson mind you. But not sure why their dropping off the list the way they are.

What DOES help now is the 13 year of rights signed over to the conference. We're all in now. As is everyone else for the foreseeable future. And if the money is far greater than they can get elsewhere -- and it is --- its worth FSU and Clemson to at least look and talk with Bowlsby.

I can say the southern ACC schools do get sick and tired of the "Tobacco Road" schools (Duke, UNC, Wake, NCState) dictating what goes on much of the time. Not unlike folks here with Texas big #@$. So thats there, and real. Enough to make that big of jump? Maybe, maybe not.

Since its all in fun...

Big 12 South - Clemson, FSU, Miami, GaTech Big 12 North - Louisville, WVU, Iowa St, Notre Dame Big 12 Midwest - OU, OSU, KSU, KU Big 12 Southwest - Texas, TxTech, Baylor, TCU

Pipe dream? Probably. But I dont think we get FSU or Clemson unless we give them more meat regional. Some form of GaTech, Miami, Maryland might do that.

Jeff Coffman 6 years, 1 month ago

I'm sorry, but if the Big XII gets Notre Dame, we would get the pick of the litter for the next 1 to 5 schools.

The thing that makes me comfortable about conference realignment now, is that it will go to 64 teams, KU sits at about 57-61, the question was always whether the Big Ten would go to 16, they would almost have to, else the ACC would catch up to them, sweeping up some other schools. Actually I wouldn't be surprised to see the Pac12 fade, because who can stay up and watch games at Midnight.

Also, conference realignment would actually be good right now, because whether or not we are good, Charlie Weis has made KU football something to talk about (including nationally). If conference realignment happened right now, people would actually think about grabbing KU and its basketball program.

DrGraydog 6 years, 1 month ago

another opinion....for what its worth

I like the idea of Florida State and Clemson as teams 11 and 12. It seems to me the Big 12 kinda sorta promised Louisville a slot when West Virginia and TCU joined. So, Louisville is 13 and I am really warming up to the thought of Rutgers as #14.

Georgia Tech could be a stretch, I have heard nothing about them being willing to move, probably more of a B1G target. Miami would be a net zero - very limited appeal outside the area.

Notre Dame would be a major coup, but they dont want their football independence.

Maryland would be an intersting addition at #15 and another as yet unnamed ACC school to finish at #16.

Now is the time to aggresively work at expanding to 16 teams while they are available and not settle for left overs from the SEC or B1G.

Jim Jackson 6 years, 1 month ago

People are talking about ND but I really think that is a long shot. Sure, there is specualtion of us taking them for all sports not football (which sucks) but they are far more likely to join the Big 10 due to geography and existing relationships.

After looking at the numbers, which states schools could make about 4-6 million more by joining our league, it seems as though it would be a shocking if we didn't have 2 more teams announced by the end of June, after the BCS/ Big 12 meetings commence.

Really hoping Rutgers is one of those teams; we could use another AAU school in the league.

Robert Brown 6 years, 1 month ago

Ga Tech and Maryland are also AAU schools.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

Sorry, I didn't read Jayhawker28's post pointing out that Rutgers is AAU. If we added Rutgers, Pitt and Ga Tech that would take the Big12 to 6 AAU schools. That is more than the SEC, equal to the PAC12 and 1 less than the B1G. If Maryland was in on the deal than that pulls us ahead of the PAC12 and equal to the B1G.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

While I would love to see the backyard brawl rivalry in the big 12 (Heck we lost our two of our other big rivalry games) I don't think Pitt changes their mind about leaving for the ACC unless the Big 12 snatches Clemson and Fla St. This is because as long as those two schools stay the ACC is still relevant in football. Now if they leave I think the dominoes will fall.

dylans 6 years, 1 month ago

KU vs MU and NU vs OU? Or tamu vs TU

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

actually it would be 5 less than the big 10. All schools in the Big 10 except nebraska are AAU and NU was when they joined.

Brian Skelly 6 years, 1 month ago

I just dont see Notre Dame doing anything but possibly lifting their skirt. They hold so much power and its been years since they've really began to exploit it. For all of those complaining about the concept of taking ONLY Notre Dame's other sports (not football), thats likely the ONLY way of luring them in. And even then this strikes me as a long shot.

That said, if I were the Big 12 folks I'd almost tell Notre Dame they can damn near hand pick who else they want to join. To much leverage for ND? Yup. But they'll only go to the place will accede power to them. And my guess is the Big 12 is behind the Big 10 and the ACC on the list of places they'd like to go -- all else being equal.

The question is then is the Tier 3 rights thing a game changer for them? Because thats really the biggest "sell" the Big 12 has going right now. That and letting them pick who 'joins'. Does that mean leaving out a logical Louisville school? Could be. Would we care (or anyone care) if the Big 12 got ND? Uhm no.

I only see the FSU / Clemson thing if there's more to it... if not much more. But the reality is if some how Notre Dame was in the fold, all these other speculated schools would'nt just be on notice... they'd be lining up.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

At this point I think Notre Dame wants to stay independent but is flirting with Texas & Big 12 solely for the purpose of getting the Big 10 to sweeten the pot for them should they decide to give up independence.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

The one thing I can say that will deter Notre Dame from both the Big 12 and ACC is that neither conference has many of their rivals whereas the Big 10 has a lot of them, which, is why I think ultimately they go Big 10 so they still make big money without giving up rivalry games or at least some of their big ones. I could be wrong though and crazier things have happened.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Actually I retract that last statement. With Pitt moving to the ACC, Notre Dame will have more rivalries in the ACC than Big 10 so yes very viable.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

ACC couldn't offer the same amount of money as the B1G. Both tie up Tier 3 Rights. If you looked at the total amount of money that Notre Dame could earn, the ACC is capped at 17 million per year, B1G would come in at 28-30 million per year and the Big12 would write a check for 22-25 million per year and give ND their Tier 3 rights to sell. Texas is going to make another 15 million per year selling their Tier 3 rights with the Longhorn Network. Kansas makes another 8 million per year selling their Tier 3 rights. How much could ND make from an Irish Sports Network? Maybe less than Texas but more than Kansas. Let's call that number at $10 million per year. Makes the Big12's offer at 35 million. ACC doesn't have a chance to attract Notre Dame. I still think that Notre Dame stays Indy but if they want a conference, the Big12 makes the most $ sense for them.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

I actually think the Notre Dame would get more for Tier 3 rights than Texas. Regardless of how bad they are they have a very big and devoted fan base that spans the entire country and around the world so I think they would actually get something at least on par with Texas if not a little more. Also I appreciate that you know how much KU gets for tier 3, I always bring that up as why KU unlike misery wasn't hot to jump ship but people always looked at me like I was crazy because apparently sucking at football meant somewhere that KU didn't make money...even though basketball makes more than many FBS football programs.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

I was being conservative with the ND money. They also have pre-built platform with the Catholic Network as does BYU with their existing television network. I think that Notre Dame could be making more money than any other NCAA school and still belong to the Big12.

And, you were right about my number being off for the B1G. I guess we could settle for more than SEC and Pac12.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Yeah Pac-12 wouldn't be bad because even their non-AAU schools are pretty legit academically other than the couple party schools.

dylans 6 years, 1 month ago

Yeah there are a lot of Catholics. More than any other religion in the US.

Chris1955 6 years, 1 month ago

There has been rumblings of not letting independent football teams be eligible for BCS conference Bowl games. I think that the folks that can control the rules, will legislate it so that ND will be forced to enter a BCS conference.

jgkojak 6 years, 1 month ago

Don't forget about Pitt. They are WV's "travel partner" and have a huge rivalry - their football game alone is worth regional $$. I could see, if Louisville, FSU and Clemson are added, that Pitt would be enticed over to the B12 and really have no worse travel than they would in the ACC.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

I agree, however, I think Pitt only changes their decision to the ACC if FSU and Clemson leave because the ACC is has some relevancy in football as long as they stay. However, apparently according to new reports Louisville isn't likely or beneficial to the Big 12 so I think the Big 12 try's to steal FSU and Clemson and then hope that Maryland decides to jump with them even though I see Maryland holding out for Big 10 in the end.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

FSU and Clemson may also want a Southeast Wing of the Big12. Their move could entice Georgia Tech and Marlyland. The latter schools fancy themselves more B1G then Big12 schools. They might be more attractive to the B1G IF the B1G expands than Rutgers, Virginia, UNC or Duke. But maybe not. The key is to be in a chair when the music stops. Round 2 was must shifts from one to the other conference. There are more contestants than chairs in Round 3. Someone will be left out.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Well I think thats essentially where we are at to limit travel to some extent. Although I do agree that I think Big 10 goes for Maryland for sure and that Tech tries to ride out with them. I think if ACC football crashes that FSU and Clemson go Big 12, Va Tech goes SEC, GA Tech and Maryland to Big 10 along with possibly BC and syracuse and then Pitt possibly jumping to Big 12, which would make an eastern division with W Va, Pitt, Fla St and Clemson.

jgkojak 6 years, 1 month ago

Maryland sees itself as Big 10-- and the Big 10 has long wanted into that (DC-Baltimore) market.

Ga Tech, likewise, would prefer the Big 10, but they have to ask -- when push comes to shove, if the B10 comes calling, are they taking Virginia and UNC first? Yes.

Louisville is valuable to the B12 in that its a great bridge school geographically- and is an attractive low-travel opponent for Notre Dame.

Remember the concept of "travel partners" - giving every remote school (think Wash and Wash St or Az and Az St) an easy rival/travel partner.

For the new B12 members - this could be Louisville <-> Notre Dame (2 hours apart) WVU <-> Pitt (1 hour) Clemson <-> Fla St (3 hours) I'd throw TCU into this mix for a B12 East

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

According to Chip Brown who for the most part is very knowledgeable on this subject:

"I was also told that studies had been done looking at what value might be added if any of the original members of the Big East (Louisville, Cincinnati, etc.) would bring to the Big 12, and that report did not come back favorably, sources said."

And yes any AAU school is going to want the Big 10 first and that's all the Big 10 will target, which, is why the Big 12 needs to target schools like FSU and Clemson.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

There is also UNC and Duke. Their value is greater seperate than together. I think UNC fits into the B1G with Rutgers, Virginia and Maryland. Rutger only if Notre Dame says 'NO' again.

Duke may be one of the schools left standing when the music stops. It would be a shame but this is being driven by football as we almost learned two years ago.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Yeah but as I have said the past two summers there are only so many viable football schools left and once those are gone I think conferences would look at schools like KU and Puke because they add instant credibility to the basketball side, are still big names and give the appearance that more matters than football. I think when the dust settles for good that Puke will ultimately be scooped up as they still have a lot of tangible assets. It's schools like NC State and wake that I think are screwed in the ACC.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

Let's count chairs. If the B1G, SEC and Big12 raid the ACC. There will be four major conferences: B1G, SEC, Big12 and Pac12.

Let's assume the B1G grabs: Rutgers, UNC, Maryland and Virginia to grow to 16.

SEC grabs Virginia Tech and North Carolina State

Big12 grabs Clemson, GATech, FSU, Miami, Pitt and one more ?

The list of schools in the ? are Duke, Louisvile, UConn, 'Cuse, BC, BYU, Wake Forrest, Cincy. What is the best school from that list? One lucky goes to the Big12. The remaining goes to a rebuilt ACC or BigEast which becomes a second tier conference. The music stops and there are no chairs left. They get left behind.

PAC12 could add to grow to 16 but that makes no sense even is this crazy world to add former ACC and BigEast to the PAC. They stay the same.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

In reality the PAC 12 isn't going to get bigger unless they raid the Big 12 at this point or unless Cal Berkley and other institutions sucks up their pride and allows the Mormons of BYU in. And actually I think the reality is the ACC will survive and the big east will die because in your scenario what will happen is the ACC will do what they always do, which, is to raid the Big East of their schools. And if the Big East survives it will definitely be on the level of C-USA or something (not that they are much better now). And Actually if I had to switch two from above I would say GA Tech to Big 10 over UNC and UNC to SEC over NC State. I don't see NC State landing in a major conference at all in the end as they just don't have the clout they used to.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

If you are right GA Tech to the B1G and UNC to the SEC, then the Big12 will pick up North Carolina State all the Carolina TV markets instead of GA Tech. It may be a bigger TV footprint than GA Tech.

I agree with you on the PAC staying 12. The only pick-ups in the West are St Diego State, UNLV, Boise State, BYU and New Mexico. None of those school would be a positive gain.

The 'NEW' ACC would be the schools left without a B1G, Big12 or SEC chair after the music stopped: Duke, Wake Forrest, 'Cuse, Cincy, Louisville, UConn, BC, South Florida, Central Florida, Memphis. It will be be a decent basketball conference but will never compete for a football NCAA/BCS Final Four championship.

DCLawHawk 6 years, 1 month ago

Louisville and Notre Dame are not two hours apart. Try 4.5 minimum for team buses. There is no interstate between Indianapolis and South Bend. Trust me. I have driven it many times. That said, those are my two favorite schools to add. FSU makes zero sense to me. I don't know what study the Big 12got, but Louisville is a great little city and the fan base is rabid. Plus they hate Kentucky as much as we do.

Jim Jackson 6 years, 1 month ago

Gotta remember, the magic number is 12 for a Big 12 champsionship game.

I think BYU and Louisville are VERY much in play here.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

Actually, there is a link a little higher up where Chip Brown explains a little why Louisville seems to be out. And also I think BYU is out now too, at least that's what it is beginning to sound like.

Jim Jackson 6 years, 1 month ago

Yeah, I saw that but if things fall through with Clemson & FSU, I can see those 2 joining us.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

It's definitely a possibility but at this point with the grant of rights being extended longer and with Bowlsby in charge I don't think the Big 12 will be as desperate to add teams and will instead take their time to make sure they get who they want instead of rushing in blindly and possibly getting stuck with two teams long term that they may not want (Ahem Big East). Also i think Tait should call his segment this summer something like Realignment Part III: The Big 12 Strikes Back or something like that.

Scott Smetana 6 years, 1 month ago

Are you sure? I'm going to have to re-watch Wargames tonight to be sure.

David Hewitt 6 years, 1 month ago

DEFCON 5 is the lowest level, but a lot of movies and stuff get it wrong. See

Randy Bombardier 6 years, 1 month ago

I don't see us doing anything. We need to wait and see what happens in the future bowls+ playoff scenario. We could end up with the best position being where we are. Although I like the possibility of getting a cluster of East Teams as mentioned above, Ga Tech, Miami, CLemson, FSU? That would be worth exploring. But just because we can doesn't mean it is a smart move.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

In reality with all the new things in place in the Big 12, I don't think they make any moves unless its a home-run such as clemson and fsu. Louisville and other big east teams and BYU on the other hand would be nothing but adding just to add teams.

Jeff Coffman 6 years, 1 month ago

Notre Dame and Rutgers #11 and #12. Then when the rest decide they need to get to 16, 4 teams from the ACC go to the Big XII, ACC, and Big Ten.

The PAC 12 picks up some to get to 16 and the Big East picks up 13 more teams to get up to the BE34.

jgkojak 6 years, 1 month ago

One thing to note is how much BETTER a position KU/B-12 is this go around- the Big East and the ACC are on the chopping block much more than the B12 - which seems fairly secure as Conf #4.

The ideal outcome: B12 EAST: Notre Dame, Louisville, West Virginia, Florida State, Clemson, Miami, Pitt, TCU

B12WEST: KU, KSU, OU, OSU, ISU, Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor

Jeff Coffman 6 years, 1 month ago

ISU and TCU to switch.

Miami changes for Maryland.

ltownatrain 6 years, 1 month ago

So FSU said today that they are fully committed to the ACC.....So the big question is are they truthful or are they like misery who said the same thing last summer about the big 12 only to jump.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

Methzoo said the same thing about the Big12. Texas A&M said the same thing. TCU said the same thing to The Big EAST. People lie to get what they want.

83jayhawk 6 years, 1 month ago

Deloss Dodds just said today in the Dallas Morning News that FSU and Clemson to Big 12 is totally false and nothing to it at all.

But the bigger news was that the Big 12 is now very very close to signing the 13 year contract with ESPN and that every team would grant their TV rights for 13 years. Thus the Big 12 is good to go for 13 years with total stability.

I don't think we see expansion in the Big 12 anytime soon. With all teams committed for 13 years at $20MM a peice there is no threat and no need to expand unless the expansion would result in greater dollars per team. The instability deal is off the table with the 13 year committment by each team in the league.

LVCHawk 6 years, 1 month ago

If this is the way the rest of the Big 12 thinks, then we should have just kept Dan Beebe. Doing nothing and watching the world move on without you was a perfect job for him.

Bear86 6 years, 1 month ago

Please kick Texas out of the conference. There would not have been re-alignment if it wasn't for them and their stool puppet Beebe. F-Texas !!!!!!!!!!

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

No need to be uncivil, and yes we do want UT in the Big 12.

Jim Jackson 6 years, 1 month ago

Wow the chairman of the board of trustees officially stating his dissatisfaction over the new ACC TV deal, and openly voicing his support for an exploration of joining the Big 12.

Realignment round 3 has officially begun.

Tait, you now have a real story on your hands.

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

The stars are aligning! I hope the Big 12 has their best man on a plane to FSU right about now.

ND in all sports best at #12, but other interested ACC teams need to go public with their potential interest within hours, not days. The Big 12 only recruits those who want to join; we are straight-talking folk, so tell us in no uncertain terms, like FSU has just done, that you want to talk too.

Louisville gets slot number 16, if they still want it, and with FSU at #11, only four slots are left. Get one now, before they are gone!

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

I think that there will be good choices for Spots #15 and #16



13-GA Tech

14- Miami

Who gets the last two spots from: L'ville, Rutgers, Pitt, 'Cuse, Duke, Wake Forrest, BC or Cincy.

Notre Dame may wait and let the ACC fall apart and then move all non-football sports into the ACC and stay Indy in football. The ACC will not die but they will drop out of the BCS Football Conferences. They will steal from the BigEast to rebuilt into the top Mid-Major Conference. The BigEast dies.

Vernon Riggs 6 years, 1 month ago

I am changing my mind on Miami. The three schools that cover the very desirable Baltimore/Washington DC/Northern Virginia markets are University of Virginia, Maryland and Virginia Tech. One school basically covers all the same markets. It make no sense for three or two of these schools join the same conference. That means the SEC will take one of the three (Virginia Tech), B1G will grab one (Virginia) and the Big12 will get the third (Maryland).

11 FSU

12 Clemson

13 GA Tech

14 Maryland (welcome back the Big12 Turg)

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

No exceptions for ND, or anyone else. We're all in this together, and will reap the benefits of creating a large, powerful football conference that can challenge the SEC. So they join in all sports, or not at all. They'd retain their third tier rights like all others, so they'll continue to make big bucks. They'd still have three or so games per year to schedule whoever they want, like Michigan.

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

Texas has learned its lesson. The grant of rights (GOR) and equal revenue sharing are the biggest improvements over the old Big 12, and UT and OU were key in creating them. In the new Big 12/14/16 everyone can seek a great third-tier deal like UT did. KU has one, if you're not aware.

Lee Stanford 6 years, 1 month ago

What about Virginia Tech? What has been their position throughout the two previous rounds of realignment? Is there any chance that they may have an interest in joining the Big 12?

Take the present ten members of our league and add Florida State, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, and Notre Dame.

And please throw out the name, "Big 12", if we stay at ten or move up to fourteen. SCC, for "South Central Conference" is still my favorite.

Brian Skelly 6 years, 1 month ago

Nothing earth shattering that the links Logic and steve above didnt at least touch on. Just more to chew on.

Id mention I dont think VaTech will go to the Big 12 with hopes of going SEC. That said, despite what Dodds wrote here I cant envision VaTech leaving regardless of what FSU (or others) decide to do. There is TONS of politics involved her with UVA and VaTech. VaTech shot its wad for YEARS trying to get in the ACC and it took UVA finally acceding and having them come in.

The FSU idea has some merit simply because the BOT threw it out there the way he has. It's clear there's a large disenchanted group of folks out there (aTm and Mizzou anyone?). What it means only time will tell.

I just hope Bowlsby plays this right. My hunch is he will. Get FSU, another Southern ACC school (Clemson, GaTech, Miami) and tell Notre Dame if they join they can pick the rest of the schools out of a golden dome.

Just wait until the egos of ND, UT, FSU are running amok !!! DRAMA !!!

Lee Stanford 6 years, 1 month ago

Thanks for the thoughts on VaTech, and also for the two links to recent stories!

Adam Evans 6 years, 1 month ago

No link, however, in the Greensboro (nc) paper this morning, there was an article talking about FSU and how furious they are with the ACC (especially after the change in the ESPN deal with 3rd tier games rights being lost in football but not basketball). Basically saying that they feel that the ACC doesn't care about anything outside of basketball in North Carolina. They want out. The article also mentions that they may be approaching the big XII soon to begin talks. Pretty interesting. If I can get the digital link (saw the actual print article) i will post this evening.

LogicMan 6 years, 1 month ago

Where's Tait? Maybe interviewing some Clemson, GaTech, Miami, etc. officials? :-)

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