Why does the Big 12 have to die?

Submitted by Tha Stunna on June 10th, 2010 at 3:01 PM

Caveats: I don't know much about academic requirements for the Big 12 (which are presumably minimal) or about non-football sports (except that Kansas has a good basketball team).  That being said, here's two scenarios:


1. The standard story occurs: Nebraska to Big Ten, Colorado, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahama, Oklahoma State to Pac Ten.


Missouri, Iowa State, Baylor, Kansas, Kansas State remain.


Given that the Big Twelve would still be an autoqualifying  BCS conference with five teams that have played together, why don't they pick off some of the top Mountain West teams?  The Big Ten is to the Big Twelve what the Big Twelve is to the Mountain West, except that the value of the Big Twelve comes from the BCS payouts.  Utah, TCU, and BYU could sidestep the whole autoqualifier issue by just joining a BCS conference, which would then have eight teams and be represented in Utah, Iowa, MIssouri, Kansas, and most importantly Texas.

The major hangup with the Mountain West has been that it's extremely top-heavy, while the bottom-feeders are very weak.  Well, even a crappy BCS school that goes 4-8 is probably going 3-1 OOC a lot of years by feeding on the weak non-BCS teams; it would greatly improve the strength of the conference that contains Utah, TCU, and BYU and they wouldn't be fighting an uphill battle outside of the system.

Add in Boise State or some other schools for bonus points.  Yeah, the $ are lacking, but it would be worse in C-USA, where a lot of those schools could be headed if the Big 12 falls apart.  At this point, it would strictly be a matter of better than, and those schools would be better off than they would be otherwise unless the MWC is sure to become a BCS conference and snipes several of the old Big 12 schools.  The latter part is sure, but the former part is not certain.

I mainly bring up this scenario to set up my optimistic, biased scenario 2.


2.Nebraska, Texas, Texas A&M to Big Ten; Colorado and Utah to Pac Ten.


Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Missouri, Iowa State, Baylor, Kansas, Kansas State remain.


If the Texas legislature likes Baylor so much, why would they allow it to be abandoned to perceived non-BCS doom?  An eight team Big Twelve could turn into a southwest conference (ironically without Texas or Texas A&M), or it could expand if desired with some MWC teams, which would be less appealing without Utah.  Either way, it would be an auto-qualifying conference, probably under the same name.  The key here is that all four Texas teams would be in BCS conferences, while in the perceived PAC-16 scenario, Baylor would be left out.

This rests on the assumption that the Pac-10 doesn't really want to go to 16 without Texas - which is probably true.  They need that brand name to justify watering down their existing, successful conference.  The Pac-10 could go for Oklahoma, Oklahoma State... and then who?  The Texas presence would be nice, but Tech and Baylor are pretty weak additions, and TCU is still just a small school.  Do they try to illogically devour Kansas, or would they rather just go to 12 and call it quits?


Overall, I don't see why the Big Twelve has to die, if the schools causing instability (Texas and Nebraska) take off to the Big Ten.  With a fourteen team Big Ten and a twelve team Pac Ten, there's nowhere left to run, and there's no real incentive to leave a BCS conference if there are no openings available elsewhere.

Also, in my hypothetical scenario 2, we give Notre Dame the finger and they stay independent.



June 10th, 2010 at 3:08 PM ^

I think in scenario #1 the Big 12 loses both its BCS bid and its NCAA basketball autobid.  The rule is something like a conference has to have at least six members with five consecutive years of membership.  The basketball bit wouldn't be a big deal (they'd likely get more than one at large big), but losing the BCS bid would be.


June 10th, 2010 at 3:16 PM ^

let CU go and pickup 1 team (Boise St, Utah, whatever) and keep the B12 as is otherwise? I think Texas wants to keep the conference in tact, because they make the most money that way.

If Texas stays and convinces Oklahoma to stay, most of the other B12 teams would stay, and the few others that may leave can be replaced.

Tha Stunna

June 10th, 2010 at 3:48 PM ^

Well, the presumption is that Nebraska is gone and that the Big 12 isn't worth saving without Colorado or Nebraska.  I don't know if that's true, but it's certainly being repeated a lot.

Mainly, I'm trying to show that the "Tech" problem that keeps Texas from joining is one of perception as opposed to reality, since three out of four Texas schools would be better off in Scenario 2 as opposed to the commonly repeated Pac 16 story.  This is if you assume that Texas and Texas A&M would be better off in in the Big Ten, which is at least true monetarily.  I don't know if the competition from Iowa/Nebraska/Wisconsin would be better or worse than the competition from Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech.


June 10th, 2010 at 3:58 PM ^

I think the B12 would be just as good, actaully better, in football if they add TCU and Boise St to replace Nebraska and Colorado. Or BYU or Utah. Any of those 4 would still make it a pretty good conference.


June 10th, 2010 at 4:02 PM ^

The Big 12 died??! Dad said he gave it to a nice family with a big house out in the country. They have lots of land where the big 12 can run around the fields all day. I can't believe he lied?!