SEC looks at bringing in A&M for 2012 as OU plans meeting on possible realignment plans

Posted Monday, Sep. 12, 2011  comments  Print Reprints
A

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Signs began surfacing Monday that the Big 12's latest comeback attempt could be short-lived.

A statement by Southeastern Conference commissioner Mike Slive, acknowledging plans to have a 13-team league that includes Texas A&M in the 2012-13 school year, marked that league's first indication that it will not sit still and let the Aggies' desired move be stalled by the legal threats of Baylor and other Big 12 schools.

Also, Oklahoma regents have scheduled a Sept. 19 meeting in Claremore, Okla. The agenda will not be finalized until Friday but multiple Big 12 sources said Monday that a likely item will be realignment. One regent told the Tulsa World that "sensitive" negotiations are expected.

The flurry of action came one day after a Sunday meeting between administrators from Texas and Oklahoma. Texas' contingent in Oklahoma City included President Bill Powers and men's athletic director DeLoss Dodds. Oklahoma President David Boren also attended, sources with knowledge of the meeting said Monday.

Texas officials have been public about their desire to remain in the Big 12, where the school could keep its 20-year, $300 million deal with ESPN for the Longhorn Network. Boren announced Sept. 2 that OU would explore other conference options, with the Oklahoman reporting the school's "sole focus" was on the Pac-12.

Sunday's talks did not change the outlook, from all indications.

After a weekend marked by optimistic comments from Big 12 administrators about the league's desire to rebuild from a nine-team nucleus without A&M, one league source said the odds "look pretty small" of that happening in light of Monday's events.

A&M sent the first tremor Aug. 31, when it announced its withdrawal to pursue membership in the Southeastern Conference. But A&M's planned move, which received conditional approval last week, has been delayed because Baylor and other Big 12 schools have not waived their rights to legal claims if the Aggies depart -- a condition specified by the SEC.

That stance may be changing. In a statement posted on the league's website, Slive said: "We remain optimistic that Texas A&M will be a member of the SEC and have started to look at schedules for 2012-13 involving 13 teams ... When Texas A&M joins our conference, we don't have immediate plans for a 14th member. We aren't thinking in terms of numbers. We think about the strength of the SEC and the attractiveness of Texas A&M as an institution."

Slive's comments suggest he expects an eventual break of the stalemate with Big 12 schools blocking the move. That could trigger realignment and the demise of the Big 12.

Although it remains unclear if Oklahoma would have a bid to join the Pac-12 without Texas, there have been indications an OU-OSU offer to join is possible. Texas' preference, if no Big 12 exists, remains unclear. School officials have said they do not want to be an independent.

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said Saturday: "I don't think anyone, with how dynamic the situation is, would stick their neck out and say nothing is going to change."

Follow Jimmy Burch on Twitter @Jimmy_Burch

Jimmy Burch, 817-390-7760

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
Phoenix 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Indiana TV: FSN-AZ, FSN-IN
Miami 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Orlando TV: Sun Sports, FSN-FL
Toronto 11/22 7:30 PM ET
Cleveland TV: TSN, FSN-OH
Philadelphia 11/22 7:30 PM ET
New York TV: TCN-PHI, MSG
Dallas 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Houston TV: FSN-SW, CSN-HOU
Sacramento 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: CSN-CA, FSN-N
Washington 11/22 8:30 PM ET
Milwaukee TV: CSN-DC+, FSN-WI
Brooklyn 11/22 8:30 PM ET
San Antonio TV: YES, FSN-SW
New Orleans 11/22 9:00 PM ET
Utah TV: NBA TV, ROOT-NW
Full Scoreboard
Week 12Full Scoreboard
Thursday
Kansas City20Final | Box
Oakland «24Gridiron Replay
Sunday
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Atlanta TV: CBS
Tampa Bay 1:00 PM ET
Chicago TV: FOX
Cincinnati 1:00 PM ET
Houston TV: CBS
Jacksonville 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: CBS
Green Bay 1:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FOX
Detroit 1:00 PM ET
New England TV: FOX
Tennessee 1:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: CBS
St. Louis 4:05 PM ET
San Diego TV: FOX
Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Seattle TV: FOX
Miami 4:25 PM ET
Denver TV: CBS
Washington 4:25 PM ET
San Francisco TV: CBS
Dallas 8:30 PM ET
NY Giants TV: NBC
Monday
NY Jets 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: CBS
Baltimore 8:30 PM ET
New Orleans TV: ESPN
Full Scoreboard
Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
St. Louis «3Final | Box
Ottawa2
Montreal 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Boston TV: NHLN, TVA, NESN
Detroit 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Toronto TV: CBC, FSN-DET
Minnesota 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: FSN-N+, SUN
Pittsburgh 11/22 7:00 PM ET
NY Islanders TV: ROOT-PIT, MSG+
Columbus 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: FSN-OH, CSN-PHI
Buffalo 11/22 7:00 PM ET
Washington TV: MSG-BUF, CSN-DC
Florida 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Nashville TV: FSN-FL
Los Angeles 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Dallas TV: FSN-W, FSN-SW+
Carolina 11/22 9:00 PM ET
Colorado TV: FSN-CAR, Altitude
New Jersey 11/22 10:00 PM ET
Calgary TV: MSG+2, SNET
Chicago 11/22 10:00 PM ET
Edmonton TV: CBC, TVA Sports 2, WGN
Arizona 11/22 10:30 PM ET
San Jose TV: FSN-AZ, CSN-CA
Full Scoreboard