There are some assumptions pertaining to the matter of Missouri's conference transition that suggest a false pattern of what really happened. And attempting to not look at this exclusively from a SEC favored perspective; but suggest that from a B1G favored perspective, there's certainly a distinction between what may be wished for, and what is the reality of the situation.
1. When the B1G announced their intent to expand a few years back, the B1G indicated there could be multiple teams added. At that time, the SEC had not declared they were expanding. The SEC public statements, at that time, expressed the SEC was not expanding. Of course, the SEC was talking to certain schools as they and other conferences commonly do.
2. There was no coupling, similar timing, of announcements by the B1G and the SEC. Thus, in terms of major options, when Missouri was openly lobbying for a B1G invite, there was no SEC invitation on the table for Missouri. Therefore, from Missouri's situation at the time, it was NOT a situation of Missouri having two choices of which the B1G was #1, and the SEC was #2 as a fallback. That does not suggest that the B1G was not the top choice among Missouri's decision-makers, but it was not part of an option other than Missouri remaining in the B12.
3. Revelations came out that Missouri's discussions with the SEC were NOT limited to the immediate time period after the SEC's acquisition of Texas A&M, or the SEC's basic consideration of Missouri only began in the few short months prior to the Missouri signing with the SEC. What that means, is that the SEC had a measure of Missouri's interest and compatibility level, and had Missouri formulated into an equation of "if x, y, z, happened, then we can do plan c".
4. Missouri's discussions with the B1G had gone on for years before the B1G acquired Nebraska, whose flirtations with the B1G were also long-term. And an often overlooked fact, is that Missouri had long-term discussions with the SEC as mentioned--but also it was not an uncommon scenario presented previously by some credible media pundits. Discussions are not promises, but interests were advanced. The B1G absolutely knew when they added Nebraska that Missouri had also been talking to the SEC. That can not be called a deference to the SEC. The B1G and Missouri both knew the SEC had an interest in the State of Texas, particular regarding Texas A&M's obvious attractiveness to the SEC. As to Nebraska, could the B1G have had a fear that Nebraska could have resolved their differences with the B12 and have become less of a B1G option if the Nebraska was not immediately taken first once the B1G declared they were exploring expanding? Was Missouri erroneously thought of as an option that would always be there, and thus the B1G decided to move on Nebraska first as part of the equation? Could the B1G have gambled and lost that Missouri would not be accepted later by the SEC and/or that staying in the B12 was only Missouri's other real option? Odd, since Missouri's then Governor and some others were dissing some B12 schools at the time.
5. If the B1G had Missouri on the back-burner as a possibility and missed the opportunity, that's Delany's and the B1G's miscalculation. If Missouri was promised but was told to wait by the B1G, obviously those were not terms Missouri was willing to accept in the event the SEC became receptive. Maybe Rutgers, and even Maryland, were maidens in waiting for the B1G, but it certainly didn't apply to Missouri.
6. The PAC added, the ACC expanded, the B1G added, the B12 was in a moment of disarray. Texas A&M got added to the SEC amongst the changes. Missouri was already on the SEC possibilities list, and emerged as the choice for #14. Obviously possibilities with a couple of other schools in the B12 were pondered as perhaps one or two from the east (ACC). Whatever, timing and circumstances, led to Missouri joining the SEC. I seriously doubt Missouri's arrangement with the SEC was enacted to be a temporary relationship until Delany phoned again. Slive is no fool, and there would have been direct discussions about commitment with Missouri's brass on this matter. If Missouri was waffling, that would have been a no-go. The several weeks of delay in Missouri signing-up officially, had much to do with getting a comprehensive commitment from Missouri, not just a technical one. That included all of Missouri's prime constituencies. Though the SEC has no G0R, each
SEC member is a signed entity to commitment contracts involving internal and external revenue and Missouri would have been fully briefed on the terms involving each.
7. As Tkalmus indicated, Missouri's geography to the SEC is not extreme. It is contiguous by three states, though two of them are short borders. And having AAU membership is not a B1G entitlement for priority choices unto themselves, nor a requirement of a given school to join the B1G if the B1G seeks them, i. e. UVA and UNC. The point, AAU affiliation is not a sole driving favor among the dynamics operating.
One cannot predict where all schools shall be in the future given the trends about super-divisions, player's compensation, scheduling alliances, etc. But Missouri is not going anywhere else, at least anytime soon, and would hinge on major upheaval. That's not to imply Missouri would not be a fine B1G fit, perhaps better for them than the SEC in terms of what specific features are valued more than others. Even if some sources at Missouri would want to entertain further movement, they also know they are in a darn good situation in the SEC. Missouri also does not want the stigma of conference hopping and go through the turmoil of another selling job and burning more bridges on a big-time level. Missouri is also ingrained in the SEC long enough that resistance to another transition, particularly from fans and major boosters, could be formidable and highly controversial. They are not Maryland, who did not escape the internal strains themselves, let alone, the external ones. And all this would would be contingent on a passion to move which presently lacks evidence.
Last edited by sec03 on Fri Jul 11, 2014 3:15 pm, edited 3 times in total.