“Dream Big-Big 12”
It’s going to happen, because it happened before, and it must happen again. Another conference is going to expand, not for rivalry reasons, not for geographical reasons, but for financial reasons.
The Big 12-Conference, once upon a time, big time, is in danger of falling on hard times. All this after the shuffling of the deck in all the other conferences.
The Big 10-taking on Penn State and Nebraska. The ACC scooping up people like Syracuse and Pitt. The PAC-10 becoming twelve with Colorado and Utah. The SEC swallowing up Texs A&M.
Some of it made sense. Alot of it did not. And because the Big 12-was left behind, now they want to catch up, and it means expansion, and the push is on to do it, and do it quickly.
They cannot get a do-over. Some historical rivalries went bye the boards. No more Texas-Texas A&M in football, which is what made the old Southwest Conference.
No more Nebraska-Oklahoma either, the flag carrier of the original Big 8. Of course back east, there is no more Pitt-Penn State, West Virginia-Syracuse, not with the Big East Conference having gone away, once the poaching was done.
There is a pretty heated argument right now, of why you expand, aside from keeping up with the other Power 5-conferences, and whom you should consider.
Geography and history be damned, it’s now all about the money and the TV markets.
So where does the Big 12 go to try and add an 11th and 12th member?
History should say maybe the University of Houston, undergoing a football rebirth.
Could you ever entice Notre Dame to give up its national status as an independent in football? Doubtful, especially with the Irish having done a bonus scheduling deal with ACC teams.
Do they stay regional, and look at Tulsa, always a bridesmaid when these talks occur. Nice little program, but not really in anybody’s spotlight.
BYU is out there, and though they have gone their own way, walking out on the Mountain West Conference, independence hasn’t really fit them well. Outside of Provo and its nationwide alum, the Cougars are not on anyone’s radar either. Lavell Edward’s unbeaten teams and the Ty Detmer era is a long time ago.
Boise State has arrived as a national name in football. Even beat a couple of the big boys in bowl matchups. The only show in town. Big Stadium too, but limited market appeal outside of Idaho.
Not mentioned, and if this is about TV markets and dollars, San Diego State.
The Aztecs have a solid program in a smaller conference. They are in a big TV market, 8th population size in the country, 13th in market size. Granted they don’t draw well, but that is a conference affiliation stigma more than anything else, in a market of 3.5M..
Would playing Oklahoma and Texas yearly,ignite football interest, like basketball has ignited this city? Would being in that conference allow you into more homes to get blue-chip players from LA, or Texas, or the midlands?
Sometimes you have to dream big, shoot for the stars, to do something that makes a difference. Turn your back on your neighbors in Wyoming-Colorado State-New Mexico? Sure, but their programs are not doing much in your conference, on your behalf, are they?.
Maybe San Diego State should make a phone call. Get into the conversation. Heck they talked about the absurdity of the Big East membership 5-years ago, why not this, which makes more sense.
The Big 12 is going to expand. You’d hate to lose Boise, you cannot get BYU back into your league, so why not try to appeal to another conference. The PAC-12 doesn’t want you. Your market size would be of great interest to that Big 12..
The Aztecs should dream big-dream Big 12.