College conference realignment talk went from relatively dormant to the talk of the town literally overnight this week after the Houston Chronicle reported that Texas and Oklahoma have strong interest in joining the SEC.
As far as realignment is concerned, what begins as fun fan fodder on a barstool soon becomes a live-action version of musical chairs. How much behind-the-scenes posturing and planning was taking place in the months prior to this week is currently unknown (but will make a great documentary one day if UT & OU end up jumping ship); but what we do know is that things are now moving quickly, and teams are worried about being left out on the dance floor without a dance partner.
Local Austin columnist Kirk Bohls is reporting that the SEC is ready to offer slots to the two Big 12 defectors, with the only holdout being Texas A&M. The Aggies famously bucked big brother Texas almost a decade ago to join the SEC when the Longhorns were vying for bigger television deals. Now that A&M is flourishing and Texas is floundering, little brother has grown up and doesn’t see any reason for the Longhorns to get an invitation to the table. Vetoing the additions would require four SEC schools to vote against further expansion, which doesn’t appear to be in the cards.
The real question in all of this, though, is what happens to the remaining Big 12 teams if the crown jewels of the conference bolt for greener pastures. According to sources, a Big 12 leadership call this week included talks of potentially reaching out to other conferences to form “super” conferences.
No matter what happens next, it’s safe to assume conferences will look markedly different soon. We’ll keep you posted on news as it breaks here at OutKick.