Realignment heats up once again, as Big 12 expansion committee schedules teleconference to talk Louisville and BYU


1:21 p.m. Update:

Talked to a couple of Big 12 administrators in the past couple of hours and found out a few things to follow up on all of this supposed hot talk regarding realignment.

For starters, today's teleconference is nothing out of the ordinary. It's been scheduled for a while now and is merely an indication that the Big 12 is doing everything possible to stay out in front of things this time.

As one source put it, "That committee is going to stay in tact for at least the next decade... It’s going to think and talk and think and talk, but it doesn't necessarily mean anything's happening."

Another source told me flat out: “We’re not in expansion mode.”

Meanwhile, a couple of folks I talked with at KU said the committee is constantly in contact with representatives from all members of the Big 12 and the committee is well aware of how KU and the rest of the institutions feel about expansion.

Couldn't find out for sure who was on the Big 12's expansion committee but I know it's a list of around 5 people and it includes Texas AD DeLoss Dodds, Oklahoma AD Joe Castiglione and a couple of university presidents or chancellors from schools other than OU and Texas. I want to say Iowa State and Baylor may also be involved.

As for the West Virginia news, still trying to track down more on that, but I'd say if the Big 12 seriously is going to have its 2012 football schedules released by next week, that would be a good sign that WVU is going to be in the Big 12 next year.

I'll make a few more calls and see what else is out there, but, at least for now, it seems like the expansion news may have been a little overblown. Shocking, isn't it?

Stay tuned...

11:08 a.m. Update:

Serious conference realignment talk regarding the Big 12 Conference appears to be back on the table, although it’s unclear at this point to what extent the expansion talk may or may not be reaching.

Chuck Carlton of the Dallas Morning News Tweeted this morning that he had confirmed that a Big 12 teleconference of the league’s expansion committee would take place sometime today. That call will be the first since league officials last met to finalize plans to admit West Virginia into the league.

The general consensus now — as it was then — is that Louisville and BYU remain at the top of the Big 12’s wish list. While that may be true, it doesn’t change the fact that many of the concerns that prevented the Big 12 from moving forward on this months ago still exist.

Louisville appears to be a sitting duck in all of this, and it’s possible that it’s just a matter of time before the Cardinals join the league. As many of you probably know, many Louisville coaches recently were telling recruits that they would be in the Big 12 very soon. That’s a bold statement and it certainly makes sense. The biggest problem for Louisville continues to be finding a suitable partner to join the league to prevent the Big 12 from having to move forward with an odd number. Although 11 worked for the Big Ten for years, sources have said that many in the Big 12 would prefer to avoid having 11 teams and would ideally like to move back to 12 or be content staying put at 10.

Here’s a link that discusses the idea of adding Louisville:

One possible reason the Big 12 could consider moving ahead with a serious look at Louisville would be the ramifications such a move would have in the Big East. With the battle still raging to set West Virginia free, another blow to the Big East’s current lineup certainly would make a move for WVU more feasible.

As for BYU, certain issues remain here, as well — travel, play on Sundays and the ability to move seamlessly into a new league without penalty chief among them — but it has been believed all along that BYU would be a solid pick up for the Big 12 because of its national brand and impressive standing in the major revenue sports.

While the latest buzz surrounding Big 12 expansion has centered around Louisville and BYU, another report — actually, a blog — surfaced recently regarding possible interest between the Big 12 and a handful of unhappy ACC schools.

Here’s a link to that blog, for your perusal:

You should know that KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger told me yesterday that he had not heard a thing about the ACC talk.

In addition, it should be noted that many of those same ACC schools included in the blog above have been linked to expansion rumors in the SEC.

That’s a quick view of what’s happening now. We’ll have more as this story develops.... if it develops.

Stay tuned...


ohjayhawk 10 years, 10 months ago

According to a WVU alum here in WV, the word is WVU is out of the Big East, at a price tag of $12 million. Can't find any official confirmation of that, but I'm hoping Matt might be able to!

Matt Tait 10 years, 10 months ago

Good to know. I've said all along that WVU was going to make it out of this fine and that it just might take a little work. Hard to say $12 million is "a little work" but when talking realignment it kind of is.

I'll see what more I can find out about WV's current situation.

Thanks for the note.

hailtoku 10 years, 10 months ago


I've grown exhausted of searching for sites, articles, etc on realignment.

You are my exclusive source for conf realignment. Keep up the good work.

Brendan Connolly 10 years, 10 months ago

Thank goodness. I was beginning to think you would get a full month or two off from the reallignment rumors. I am sure that you would have missed a leisurly schedule. Now go get a carton of five hour energy drinks and make sure that you only sleep in 20 minute intervals as you are forced to constantly feed us the latest info on conference reallignment, what Weiss is currently doing, and any recruiting news....even if it is a mild prospect for 2014 women's golf team. Don't you dare let any of this slide by you!

Chris Bohling 10 years, 10 months ago


Does anyone really think BYU would not jump to the Pac-XX if given a chance?

It sounds kinda terrible and dishonest, but the Big 12's best hope for long-term survival at this point is to go after the north-central ACC schools like Pitt and Virginia Tech. Then, with any luck, the SEC will decide that the ACC is more unstable than the Big 12 and steal away Miami and FSU. Then things would stabilize with 4 big leagues left.

johnnyphoton 10 years, 10 months ago

Arkansas seems like such a natural fit . . .

Robert Howard 10 years, 10 months ago

It's about time the Big XII started being the hunter in this race. I was getting tired (and nervous) of all the Big East maneuvering to add teams while we sat and watched. Regardless of the universities being considered, I'd be a big fan of getting back to at least 12 teams.

Here's to hoping that Chuck Neinas pulls off a huge play that rocks the sports world! (can you say, 'Notre Dame to the Big XII'?)

Mark Lindrud 10 years, 10 months ago

I say adding Notre Dame and Louisville would be great gets for the Big XII

LAJayhawk 10 years, 10 months ago

The good news here (in a non-utilitarian mindset) is that it sounds like the Big 12 is on the predator side this time, rather than the defensive, prey side. We're looking to expand at others expense instead of the other way around. This is good for the obvious reason that we're expanding, not contracting, but it also implies that all the other schools in the league are content and have no desire to look for greener pastures, as it were.

This news gives me much more confidence in the long term stability of the Big 12.

Danny Hernandez 10 years, 10 months ago

Louisville and BYU imho would be awesome additions.....can't believe we got rid of the dead weight in misery and the other texas team and got better...Heck, we're better without misery in the Big12.

Danny Hernandez 10 years, 10 months ago

Louisville and BYU imho would be awesome additions.....can't believe we got rid of the dead weight in misery and the other texas team and got better...Heck, we're better without misery in the Big12.

Eric Harrison 10 years, 10 months ago

Getting way ahead of everything ... aligning those teams doesn't make sense North-South from a competitive standpoint (North-WVU, BYU, KSU, KU, Louis, ISU. South-OU, OSU, UT, TCU, TT, Baylor). East-West makes more sense to me (even though half of the conference is no more than 50 miles E-W of each other). East-OSU, KState, KU, ISU, Louisville, WVU. West-BYU, TT, UT, OU, TCU, Baylor. (Although the west's BBall would leave a little to be desired) The 'zipper' approach of splitting rivals is tough with new schools. Baylor-TCU UT-Texas Tech OU-OSU KU-KState Louis-WVU BYU-ISU

The thing I'm realizing is that for a 12-team conference only KU and ISU bring 'down' football (and both are trending up) and only TCU, TT and sort of OU and ISU bringing 'down' hoops. Would be Strong at the top and definitely Deep in both sports.

Ted Toulouse 10 years, 10 months ago

I still think North-South works - actually, it's more like Texas vs. the World (just like last time.

North - WVU, Lou, ISU, KU, KSU, BYU South - Texas & Ok schools

They're used to beating each other up in the south div. and the North div. would be a little more competitive (since CU was such a doormat for years). hell, maybe BYU would pick up more Colorado recruits because they'd play closer to home.

AirCapJay 10 years, 10 months ago

The travel burden would be higher for your north schools compared to Texas and OK schools. I think you have to even out the travel burden to make it fair. So I think the West-East alignment would be better.

coolsportsdad 10 years, 10 months ago

Why does it have to be geographical? Align rivalry teams in the same divisions (OU-OSU, KU-KSU, OU-TX are really the only legitimate ones left) and then take the remainder and align them keeping the travel burdens in mind. Name them with some random monikers ala B10. (Fambrough Division-Wilkins Division?) Could look something like - OU, OSU, TX, WVA, ISU, L'Ville and KU, KSU, BYU, Baylor, TT, TCU.

bradh 10 years, 10 months ago

I never thought the North-South division was good. I thought it would be better to split up the Texas additions, rather than giving them a power block. The original 12 teams might still be around if someone had some common sense early on.

My only concern with BYU is the time zone. You can do all right with two time zones, but three I think would be tough.

jgkojak 10 years, 10 months ago

The Pac 12 has said pretty clearly they have no interest in BYU and will not make the concessions (travel on Sunday, etc) that BYU demands.

Adding Louisville is nice because it gives WVU a school closer than ISU and Kansas. BYU just makes sense because it is a national brand and probably should have been in the B12 from the beginning instead of Baylor.

I wonder how the divisions line up? EAST WVU, Lville, ISU, KU, KSU, TCU That's a winnable league in football.

WEST BYU, Texas, TTech, Baylor, OU, OSU

Ben Kliewer 10 years, 10 months ago

Hey Matt, Is there any kind of scheduling deadline for WVU to get into the Big 12 for the next athletic year? Seems to me that the football scheduling would need to confirm if the team is in the league by mid-summer at the latest.

Matt Tait 10 years, 10 months ago

Good question. One reporter who covers the Big 12 Tweeted earlier today that Chuck Neinas told him that the 2012 Big 12 football schedule would be out by Feb. 1....

I gotta think that's a good sign for the movement of WVU to the Big 12.

Guess we'll see. I haven't heard of any hard and fast deadline on it, but I'll ask around again and see if that's changed.

Ben Kliewer 10 years, 10 months ago

That Sneer guy from the EERinsider link you posted said that WVU and the Big East were waiting for the football schedules to be released and then it was just about money from there on out. But he doesn't list any sources in his article and makes a lot of other bold claims, so who knows. Thanks for the info!

d_park 10 years, 10 months ago

A beat writer in Charlottesville, VA reported that six ACC schools have already signed contracts with the Big XII. Welcome to the Big XII

Matt Tait 10 years, 10 months ago

Name? Date? Link? I searched their newspaper's website and couldn't find anything...

Matt Tait 10 years, 10 months ago

We're on the same page... Just can't let people throw that kind of thing out.

VaJay 10 years, 10 months ago

I think it'd be a great idea to publish the actual names, email addresses, etc. of posters who deliberately post lies & somehow ban them for good. It would clear out some of the garbage.

d_park 10 years, 10 months ago

Hey everybody, vote for VaJay to be moderator for He'd do a great job of weeding out all the garbage that's on here.

Phoghorn 10 years, 10 months ago

What??? You don't want to hear about the fact that I have a date with Erin Andrews tonight?

VaJay 10 years, 10 months ago

I wish, but i sure wouldn't want to look up yours...

tman1991 10 years, 10 months ago

Written by Honas "The Dude" Sneed

I stopped reading that blog after that..

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

I would rather stay at 10 than get tulane. Let the big east get the temples and tulanes of the college world. If we go bigger we need to go "bigger".

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

Because tulane is awesome now but in 5-10 years they are going to be a powerhouse? Give me a break. We cant just grab any team that is available and then hope to be a relevant conference in any sport. My opinion is stay at 10, unless someone huge wants in (ie. ND).

Phoghorn 10 years, 10 months ago

Well, that would keep the Backyard Brawl alive. Couches beware!

gratefulhawk 10 years, 10 months ago

yes,yes, Pitt is a fit, 5th most played vs. ND and 3rd. longest rival vs.same. + the back yard brawl. BRING PITT AND N.D. win, win, win.

HawkTronic 10 years, 10 months ago

While I like the idea that we are creating options, I'm not sure adding schools just to get to 12 is smart. Operating from the assumption that this is all about money... I don't think that Louisville would be a net addition to conference revenue. The addition of BYU is probably revenue neutral. Adding ND (even without football) would most likely be a plus, and we'd get some football games. Didn't the ACC schools just sign some Shylock-like contract? P.S. AddingTulane would be ridiculous.

HawkTronic 10 years, 10 months ago

I read your addition with Sterling Archer's voice. Well played.

Michael Maris 10 years, 10 months ago

According to Chuck Neinas (yesterday on Kevin Keitzman show), the Big XII is not looking to expand any until the new Tier 1 TV Contract negotiations talks begin to heat up.

Kevin Keitzman talked about Clemson and Florida State being tired of Good Ole Roy ''Boy'' Williams and Coach K ruling the roost in the ACC. Those schools were tired of Coach Williams and Coach K doing their best to make the ACC a Bzasketball Conference. Keitzman said that he heard as many as 5 ACC Schools were exploring their options.

Don't know where Keitzman got his information, just telling you what was said on Keitzman's show yesterday. Neinas said that the idea of 16 team Super Conferences can be placed in the closet. That idea is a scheduling matrix and is basically a dead idea.

So, who knows. I know that Navy, San Diego State, Boise State and the others better just hold off on joining the B-East. If the ACC loses schools to the Big XII. Then, the ACC will be raiding the B-East again.

Ben Kliewer 10 years, 10 months ago

Not calling out a misspelling to be a jerk...I just wanted to point out how awesome the word Bzasketball is...

Eric Dawson 10 years, 10 months ago

Hmmmm, smells like Bull Durham hoops to me...

nuleafjhawk 10 years, 10 months ago

Maybe we could call it that permanently if we sign Shabazz !! lol

Michael Maris 10 years, 10 months ago

Kleave, I know how to spell. So, I guess my fingers don't work as good as your fingers do.

barackchalkjhawk 10 years, 10 months ago

Neinas was on 810 last night and mentioned the realignment committee appointed by the Board was meeting today, however he said these are routine meetings not a sign of adding more teams. Also he claimed all of the schools are happy with 10 teams and they have to weigh the value of adding a school since they are taking money away from the other 10. Don't see Louisville adding any value and BYU is questionable,

Andy Tweedy 10 years, 10 months ago

The ONLY person I believe any more is Matt Tait!!! Everybody else is a liar, including Chuck Neinas, DeLoss Dodds, Oliver Luck, Mike Alden, etc. I don't even believe my wife when it comes to expansion. LIARS...all of them!!!!

ejlumus 10 years, 10 months ago

I could not agree more!! "Matt is the man"

Justin Lindsley 10 years, 10 months ago

Bring them on! we need to go pick others to come to our conference instead of others picking ours apart. we need at least 12, but I would say 14 would be better.

Daniel Kennamore 10 years, 10 months ago

The percentage wheel would be a lot more fun for this instead of the laundrey lists of bad coaching options or 'Big East or bust' wheels of last summer.

JayDocMD 10 years, 10 months ago

Stand pat 99.9% Other 0.1%

(not what I want, but what I think)

Jeff Coffman 10 years, 10 months ago

It sounds like from the more recent post there isn't really a chance of expansion.

However, if there were, would there be any chance of having 12 teams next year? I'm guessing that Louisville would want out as soon as possible and BYU could switch any second they want to. With Big East I heard their hangup was they didn't want to give their home football game rights to the Big East, plus there was no guarantee that the BE was going to be an AQ.

Tony Bandle 10 years, 10 months ago

If we could get Notre Dame and BYU, the Big Twelve would truly be God's Conference with the Catholics, the Mormons, the Baptists and the Christians!!!

You could put the league offices in St.Louis and have the league title game under the watchful eyes of "Touchdown Jesus" in South Bend!!

Mark Lindrud 10 years, 10 months ago

Almost spit out my oj on that one. Hilarious stuff.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

A couple more weeks of this and i will be beating my head against a wall like the last couple years!

Brian Skelly 10 years, 10 months ago

To me BYU is a name and would be nice. But the logistics of BYU just strikes me as insane. Especially if any other future expansion would be EAST, which it sounds like it would be.

The ACC stuff sounds odd to me, only because it hasnt been played up nationally to much. Of course with all the other blather we've had with all this its hard to take any of it with anything but a grain of salt.

Smart or not, it sounds like Louisville is 'next in line' for joining. I think thats a good get, but not a great one. I DO like the idea of expanding East as opposed to West though.

Notre Dame obviously is the "Big Fish" but would likely require a hell of a lot of back door stuff, stuff we've come to despise the past 36 months with all this stuff. But adding them would make things a lot better for all the teams -- likely including them. Hard to not see NBC and its new (Versus) NBCSportsChannel not wanting more than just one school to broadcast. Id look to Fox and NBC for our TV Tier 1 stuff... maybe both if they played their cards right. Who knows.

Still sad / frustrating / crazy that TV (and football) drives this to the extent it does.

ku_tailg8 10 years, 10 months ago

I think its a poor move to even consider BYU. They are in a different time zone. Throw in the east coast time zone for WVU and this conference would be spread too far apart. If Louisville comes aboard, then the WVU move makes more sense. Colorado didn't fit for a reason. BYU makes no sense. Lets just keep adding teams east of the Mississippi if they do indeed want to expand.

ejlumus 10 years, 10 months ago

All time zone slots would be filled with B12 games.

What's wrong with that?

Eric Williams 10 years, 10 months ago

BYU - Mountain WVU - Eastern

All others Central

I think you forgot about Pacific.

refugee 10 years, 10 months ago

Would be fine with L'Ville and Cincy.. Pitt would be nice but I don't see it...

Micky Baker 10 years, 10 months ago

So, if this works out and Louisville and BYU come over to the Big 12, then we have

Iowa State Kansas State Kansas Oklahoma Oklahoma State Texas Texas Tech Baylor

TCU WV BYU Louisville.

Yep, that's 12 Teams.

And, it will then be a better Football Conference than it was before and three pretty decent basketball school additions. The Big 12 will be a better conference in the end.

Good riddens Mizzou, Nebraska, CU, and A&M.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

I know what you nean. But for some reason i cant stop reading.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

I dont think we missed out on a thing with either one. Houston lost case keenum and their coach last year, they r done. UCF is a flash in the pan in my opinion. Now in basketball houston has a great incoming class. UCF "had" jordans son. So there is one plus out of all of that.

Now as for memphis all i have to say is "WHAT"? They had a good running back a few years back... They had paypal cal to bring light to their bbal program. Now they have a good coach-not great- in pastner. So tell me what is so appealing to memphis other than their ribs.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

I dont think we missed out on a thing with either one. Houston lost case keenum and there coach last year, they r done. UCF is a flash in the pan in my opinion. Now in basketball houston has a great incoming class. UCF "had" jordans son. So there is one plus out of all of that.

Now as for memphis all i have to say is "WHAT"? They had a good eunning back a few years back... They had paypal cal to bring light to their bbal program. Now they have a good coach-not great- in pastner. So tell me what is so appealing to memphis other than their ribs.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

These two were suposed to be under illuminatironin

Thad Daugherty 10 years, 10 months ago

We missed out on Houston and UCF. Canwe please talk to Memphis? I know they arent that strong in foosball but, they would help us maintain a strong BB conference.

Jackalope7 10 years, 10 months ago

I bet a guy at my work that BYU would not become a member of the Big 12 back in August. The bet was, if BYU is not an offical member by September, I would win a 12-pack of beer of my choosing. For the last few months, its looked as if I had it lock up. Now, its up in the air. Don't fail me now Big 12!!!

Brian Skelly 10 years, 10 months ago

I actually think if we get Louisville, we'll go after a 'matching' team only if it makes sense. Otherwise, I think they go for big fish and ignore the rest.

The reality is, the Big East's moves for football really dont do anything except add more teams -- other than Boise State. It's now essentially Conference USA with more pedigree. Once Syracuse and Pitt leave you cant really even claim its better.

The concept of going back to 12 makes total sense, and in the summer/fall I was more in tuned with the "strength in numbers" idea. Now I think that the dust has settled (albeit temporarily) the "strength in strength" idea makes more sense.

I still think the Notre Dame idea is pie in the sky... but not nearly as much if the Big East keeps imploding... which it may. Whatever politicking needs to be done, its worth the effort, even if were rejected.

It'll be interesting. Thanks again for the updates Matt.

hawkinNE 10 years, 10 months ago

Cant agree more skelly. If big east crumbles i hope ND remembers how the B1G tried to force them into their conference. Then hopefully we have a chance.

april28 10 years, 10 months ago

Ummm...I wonder what our football record would have been over the past 16 years if Air Force had been in the league?

Air Force offers a massive following - much bigger than BYU - great academics, good football, and better travel.

In addition, I think that being part of the Big 12 might actually help Air Force land a few more recruits.

Jim Jackson 10 years, 10 months ago

BYU has a huge fan base (approximately 700,000, so they say) and a strong academic record, I say we take them asap.

april28 10 years, 10 months ago

I think that BYU fits about as well as WVU, which means that they don't. Air Force allows us to replace a military school wannabe (A&M) with a real one.

LogicMan 10 years, 10 months ago

Well, the current standard that we are playing catch-up to is 14 teams. So we are four short.

The quick, easy fix:

New Mexico to the south, and Louisville and two of BYU, Colorado State, Wyoming, or Cincinnati to the north.

The slow but interesting:

New Mexico to the south, Louisville and BYU to the north, and kindly ask ND to join the north "or we'll offer the slot to someone else by March 15th".

Or get ahead of the times and go to 16, starting with 15 and again giving ND the chance to be number 16, or be left out. So my six adds would be New Mexico and Colorado State to the south, and Louisville, BYU, ND, and Wyoming to the north, with Cincy as a potential replacement for any.

Nathan Scholl 10 years, 10 months ago

Big 12, please don't add Louisville! I can't stomach KU playing at the KFC YUM CENTER! Just out of principle!! Such a lame name and idea!!

Danimal 10 years, 10 months ago

I want Notre Dame and BYU in the Big 12 so we can have Catholic vs. Mormon sporting events.

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