The Bishin Cutter wrote:
Could but won't.
Like you said all SWC members, minor Texas school like UNT, UTEP, UTSA, TX St plus Oklahoma, OSU, and other like ND & BYU would make it easy to fill up a schedule but I'm not sure ESPN would pay Texas enough money to make it worth going independent. Plus they need a good landing spot for their other sports and I just don't think they'd find a good spot for that...
Plus Texas has no deal with the playoff like ND does not do they have any bowl access to 2nd tier bowls (Alamo, Holiday, Citrus) which have all struck exclusive deals with P5 conferences, and I doubt they want their 10 win fb team playing East Carolina in the 1/2 empty Bahamas bowl.
With the independent pool being so sparse as it is, any addition improves viability, but only to a certain point. I think Notre Dame's move exposed the new reality of the current FBS landscape. With conferences so valued yet cumbersome to accomodate, it's not like Texas could demand the schedule they wanted. They have to make sacrifices like everyone they want. I agree that some games are automatics...but it's the fluff (SBC, CUSA, etc.) Texas will get for what it needs to fill dates. Notre Dame traded in that stress, losing some good rivals in there for it, but doesn't have the scheduling woes BYU has...which Texas likely would as an independent, even if not as extreme.
I'd wager that in this hypothetical situation Texas would make a deal to continue to play Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl the first weekend in October like they always have...and would restart the Thanksgiving rivalry with A&M and we know Tech would want to keep their game and prove they are one of UT's rivals (in the past their was talk about making it every year on Haloween). UT already has 3 OOC games scheduled for the next many years and would simply expand that to 4 with very little effort. Pencil in long term deals with ND & BYU for Novemeber, a mid year game with Rice and you pretty much have the first 6 games of the year and last 4 games of the year established before we need to even dip into the pool of Arkansas, Baylor, TCU, Okie St, other independents like UMass, Army, or other in state fodder to find a long term deal with.
Minor Go5 school (kickoff cupcake) already scheduled: Rice, UTEP
Major P5 game; already scheduled: ND, USC, LSU, Michigan, tOSU, Arkansas
Mid size Go5 school (AAC/MWC) already scheduled: Tulsa, UCF, USF
Minor P5 game; already scheduled: Cal, Maryland
Oklahoma already scheduled until 2025
? Baylor/TCU ? (If none will bite plug in BYU and add Army in Nov)
? Arky/Okie St ? (Worst case scenario this is UMass or Tx St or UTSA/UTEP both controlled by UT BOR)
Still I don't think it will ever happen, but Texas is likely one of the few schools that could pull this off.
Fan of the Big 12 Conference, the Mountain West Conference and...