February 25th, 2013 03:40 PM║ Posted By: John Pennington ║ Permalink
║ Schools: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt
Tags: Big Ten, Gene Smith, Gordon Gee, Ohio State
Last month, Ohio State president Gordon Gee got the sporting world a’talkin’ when he said “there has been ongoing discussion” within the Big Ten regarding further conference expansion. Maryland and Rutgers have already accepted invitations to join the soon-to-be 14-school league. The cost of Maryland’s move will eventually decided in the courts barring a negotiated settlement with the ACC, the school’s current home.
It appears that Gee and Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith must have different definitions of the term “ongoing discussions.” That’s because the employee has seemingly refuted the statement made by his employer just about 30 days ago.
“I think you’re going to have all types of rumors about us and the Big XII. We’re not doing anything right now. We’ll sit and evaluate Rutgers’ and Maryland’s transition. We don’t want to screw that up. Right now we’re not aggressively pursuing anyone.”
Most believe that the Big Ten and Virginia (and possibly Georgia Tech and North Carolina and others) are biding their time until Maryland’s exit fee is finalized. At that point, additional Big Ten moves will come.
Regardless of his intent, Smith’s statement certainly doesn’t quash those theories.
As for the Big Ten “not aggressively pursuing anyone,” well…
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