With the death of the old Big East, the SEC/Big East basketball challenge was quietly laid to rest as well. This season, ESPN has helped doctor up a new Big 12/SEC Challenge. Today, the network released the broadcast schedule for the 10-game event:
Texas Tech at Alabama — Thursday, November 14th, ESPN2, 9:00pm ET
Auburn at Iowa State — Monday, December 2nd, ESPNU, 7:00pm ET
Vanderbilt at Texas — Monday, December 2nd, ESPN2, 9:00pm ET
West Virginia at Missouri — Thursday, December 5th, ESPN2, 7:00pm ET
TCU at Mississippi State — Thursday, December 5th, ESPNU, 7:00pm ET
Ole Miss at Kansas State — Thursday, December 5th, ESPN2, 9:00pm ET
South Carolina at Oklahoma State — Friday, December 6th, ESPNU, 9:30pm ET
Kentucky vs Baylor at Arlington, TX — Friday, December 6th, ESPN, 10:00pm ET
Kansas at Florida — Tuesday, December 10th, ESPN, 7:00pm ET
Oklahoma vs Texas A&M at Houston — Saturday, December 21st, ESPNU, 7:00pm ET
Four SEC schools — Arkansas, Georgia, LSU and Tennessee — will not take part in this year’s event.
The SEC and Big 12 are playing nice these days. There’s now a mechanism in place to match Texas A&M with Texas and Missouri with Kansas. It’s highly disappointing then that those two longtime rivals have not been paired up in Year One of this challenge. You can be sure that decision had more to do with Texas and Kansas than A&M and Mizzou, two schools who’ve expressed a desire to play their old foes. Hopefully the folks in Austin and Lawrence will grow up at some point.
SIDENOTE – For years we’ve had a little fun with the Big 12 here at MrSEC.com. We’ve referred to the league as the Big XII because that’s what the league’s logo says. As we’ve noted before, ESPN’s logo doesn’t read “WKRP.” Judging by the emails from Texas fans and other Big 12′ers, the decision to use their Roman numeral designation hasn’t sat too well with the folks West of the Mississippi.
Well, since the SEC is now partnering with the Big 12 on so many fronts — the Sugar Bowl, this hoops challenge, numerous other bowls — we’re going to be writing about the Big 12 much more often. And the Big XII joke will cease being a friendly jab. More Big 12 fans will come here, not get the barb, and write to correct us.
So from this point on, we’ll refer to the Big 12 as the Big 12.
But they should still dump their Big XII logo.