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A&M’s Independence And More Moving Pieces: Expansion Notes – 9/9/11

Lots of headlines from around the league — and concerning expansion — on this Friday.  We’ll start with the expansion stuff, move on to league news and then finish up with our game projections for tomorrow’s SEC action.

Here’s what’s being written on the expansion front…

1.  The Houston Chronicle is reporting that Texas A&M is more likely to go independent for a year than to play in the Big 12 next season if its entry into the SEC is delayed.

We, however, believe the “independent” option to be a bit extreme:

A.  Texas A&M would still have to give up television revenue from the Big 12 as part of an exit penalty.

B.  A&M would not receive any TV money from the SEC or anyone else to help cover that cost.

C.  Scheduling probably wouldn’t be easy at this late date.

D.  If the Aggies were to play on television less, what would that do for A&M recruiting for a year?  (A short-term issue, yes, but one that Mike Sherman would certainly care about.)

E.  Might Baylor and/or other Big 12 schools find yet another reason to sue the Aggies?  If A&M goes, it’s still breaking a contract that other schools were counting on to help pay for facility upgrades (or so the story goes).

Everything’s on the table in College Station — and you can bet some Aggies are ticked enough to leave the league out of spite immediately — but a year of independence might be more costly than one last hate-filled tour around the Big 12.

For the record, we still believe A&M will be in the SEC in 2012.

2.  Baylor (and/or others) can file suit if they like, but this writer for The Fort Worth Star-Telegram says history is on A&M’s side…

3.  But don’t expect lawsuits to be filed in the first place.  As we pointed out yesterday, the threat of litigation is a stall tactic designed to keep Oklahoma in the Big 12.

3.  Meanwhile,’s Andy Katz writes that Baylor won’t budge when it comes to waiving its right to sue A&M, the SEC, Mike Slive and the Easter bunny.  (Just kidding about the Easter bunny.)

4.  John Lopez of writes that “Baylor’s tantrum seals its own fate.”  (Of course, there could be just a hint of bias there from a site called

5.  Clay Travis of believes the Big 12′s television contracts will help keep the core of that league together even if some big boys leave.

6.  Stewart Mandel of says if you think conference realignment will lead to a college football playoff… think again.

7.  Want to create your own realignment plan?

8.  And the folks at online gambling spot have posted prop bets as to who will join the SEC next.

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