Over the past few months, everyone has an opinion about about what the conferences will look like when all the realignment is complete. But this past week, we’ve taken a step closer to having some real movement.
So here’s what we know:
* Wants Notre Dame, wants Texas.
* Notre Dame wants to remain independent in football but is keeping an eye on the other conference changes
* Texas joining would require other Texas schools being included (Texas Tech), which makes Texas a longshot
* Nebraska and Missouri remain top targets
* Potential growth by other conferences (Pac-10) might change Notre Dames mind about joining
* If Notre Dame joins, Syracuse would likely be included, along with Rutgers (or Pitt).
* Notre Dame does not want to be left behind if Syracuse left the Big East (along with other football schools)
* Wants Texas and Colorado
* Can only get Texas if it expands by 6 with Oklahoma, Oklahoma St., Texas A&M; and Texas Tech.
* Texas legislature is pushing for Baylor to be included instead of Colorado.
* If the Pac-10 can’t get Texas, they will likely pass on expansion
* The Colorado and Utah scenario seems to lack the revenue potential needed to expand
* Happy with the money they are making
* Would consider expansion if it were the right mix.
* Might have the flexibility to expand by 4 with Texas, Texas A&M;, Oklahoma and Oklahoma St.
* Texas would require Texas Tech to join, something the SEC would likely pass on.
* Texas not thrilled with the academic standings of the SEC compared to Big 12, Big Ten and Pac-10
* SEC might still expand with options from the SEC such as Florida St., Clemson, Georgia Tech or Miami.
* Best economic scenario for the SEC might be expand to 14 with Florida St. and strengthen the Atlanta marketshare with Georgia Tech.
* Just got a new TV deal and has no real need to expand
* Potential losses in the Big East could cause the ACC to expand north with Uconn and Pitt (or Rutgers in Pitt’s place if they were available)
* If the ACC needed to replace schools should the SEC poach from them, they could look to the Big East again with schools like WVU and Louisville.
* Both schools are far from what the ACC would prefer in academics, but if the Big Ten, Pac-10 and SEC all expanded, the ACC might be forced to lower their standards (much like the Pac-10 is considering now).
* The loss of Syracuse and Rutgers would be enough to trigger a drastic change.
* Many Big East admins feel the conference will drop football if they lost such members to the Big Ten.
* Further losses to the ACC (2-4 schools) would end the conference
* Remaining members might consider a split to form a new conference
* It’s more probable that the remaining schools join with CUSA
* Has been monitoring situations for some time
* Expected to lose schools like UCF, Memphis and ECU to the Big East when the seek replacements
* If the Big East only lost 1-2 schools, that could still be the case.
* If the Big East lost half it’s members, it’s easier for them to just join back with their old CUSA rivals.
* CUSA admins have explored a number of options INCLUDING expanding to 18 schools (with 6 Big East members)
* Once appeared they could lose Utah, BYU and TCU
* Now it appears that they will lose no members and primed to absorb remaining Big 12 members such as Kansas, Kansas St., and Colorado or Baylor.
* Could still consider Iowa St.
* Still has it’s eyes on Boise St.
* Could still include Houston as a partner for TCU if Baylor ended up in the Pac-10
* MWC could very well expand from 9 to 14 with Kansas, Kansas St., Colorado, Boise St., and Houston
* Minimal changes due to the prime candidate schools in the conferenced above them having Big 12 schools to consider.
Here’s a quick view into what COULD happen.
The reality right now is that there are 3 primary moves that could trigger more drastic changes.
* COULD be a Pac-16 comprised of 6 big 12 members
* COULD be 2 Big 12 members joining the Big Ten
* COULD be 2 Big East members joining the Big Ten
* COULD have the SEC opt to expand with 2 schools to “keep pace”
* COULD see the ACC expand to 14 with 2 northern schools from the Big East