I think A&M to SEC is a natural. It would allow them to renew their rivalry with LSU that died when the Big 12 was formed. If this happens, Texas will either go to the PAC-12 with Tech, OU and OSU or simply go independent. I predict that if A&M bolts to the SEC, OU may go with them if Texas decides to go independent. If Texas doesn't want to go independent, then OU will go with Texas, TT and OSU to the Pac 10. I think the SEC will go after Virginia Tech to add another strong football power and expand the geographic footprint. At that point the remaining Big 12 school will absorb BYU and other Mountain West schools to reach 12 schools and retain auto BCS invite. The Big East will try to prevent that from happening by trying to poach Kansas and Missouri and adding Central Florida to reach 12. The Big East would then split into two divisions for basketball playing regional tournaments in Chicago and NYC and then the winners playing each other for Big East title.
Anyone who has read MrSEC.com for a while now knows the following:
1. We believe the Big 12 is destined to come apart at the seams because Texas (and to a lesser extent Oklahoma) make a heckuva lot more cash than their conference brethren… and that’s what almost split the league last summer.
2. We believe — and have been saying this for two years now — that Texas A&M will one day be a member of the Southeastern Conference. As we pointed out numerous times last summer, A&M and the SEC have flirted with one another dating back to the 1980s and the math of such a marriage makes too much sense not to eventually happen. (Our opinions were validated when Mike Slive traveled to College Station last year as expansion-mania reached its apex.)
3. We believe that this A&M migration to the SEC will commence when the Big 12 splits. Unlike the Big Ten, the SEC’s presidents have made it clear that they do not want to raid a league unless that league is already disintegrating.
So why mention this today? Because the Big 12 applied some more duct tape to its wounds last week during its annual league’s meetings. (What, you didn’t know the Big 12 held its spring meetings last week? Maybe that’s because 99% of the national press were attending the SEC’s meetings instead.)
A big sticking point in the Big 12 has been the disbursement of the conference’s revenue. Until now, just 57% of the league’s riches have been distributed equally with the rest determined by the number of television appearances each school made. Big advantage: Texas and Oklahoma. Screwed: Kansas State and Iowa State.
Last week, however, the league voted to up the equal revenue split to 76% with the remaining 24% being divvied according to TV appearances.
With its new $1.17 billion television deal with Fox, that means an increase in millions for Big 12 schools like Baylor, Kansas, and the aforementioned Kansas State and Iowa State.
Texas is the true power in the Big 12 and such a move would not have passed without the Longhorns’ backing. With UT’s own new multi-multi-million dollar deal with ESPN for its own television network kicking in soon, the Longhorns can afford to kick some of their “league money” back into the kitty if it means their underlings will stick together longer and continue to take a beating at the hands of the burnt orange bullies from Austin.
In other words, the lord of the Big 12 just gave his serfs a bit more land in order to keep them around.
Is this a final fix for the league? Doubtful. There’s too much bad blood between the schools and Texas’ TV network will eventually drive an even bigger have/have-not wedge between the league’s paupers and princes. But this measure might at least slow down the fracture of the league for a while.
Texas A&M is still destined to join the SEC and duel with LSU and Arkansas on a yearly basis at some point, but it might be a few miles further down the road after the Big 12′s moves of last week.