The University of Missouri board of curators has unanimously voted to give chancellor Brady Deaton “the authority to take any and all actions necessary to fully explore options for conference affiliation and contracts related there to which best serve the interest of The University of Missouri-Columbia.”
And somewhere, Chuck Neinas just threw up in his mouth a little bit.
Deaton said after the meeting that he will not comment on the SEC and will not discuss timelines. He also said that MU has been given no deadline for committing fully to the Big 12.
And somewhere, Kenneth Starr just threw up in his mouth a little bit.
The takeaway from all of this? Deaton wanted the Big 12 to survive. That much he’d made clear. But the board thought it would be best to explore its options. Either a) Mizzou will now begin its march to the SEC in earnest or b) Mizzou has just used its leverage to try and force Texas to yield in some areas relating to its Longhorn Network.
Buyout talk — which started around $30 million for Texas A&M — has actually been kicked around as being $40 million for Missouri, should the school exit the Big 12.
Big 12 administrators and Neinas — the league’s interim commissioner — have said that their league would be viable with or without Missouri. That likely sounds good to Mike Slive and company. But don’t rule out Baylor’s president Starr when it comes to firing out some sort of punitive lawsuit should A&M and Mizzou both wind up in the SEC.
Finally, as we suggested this morning, Deaton has indeed resigned his post as the chairman of the Big 12 board of directors.