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There's a price for being obstinate. And Texas and Deloss Dodds may be getting ready to pay it.
By not joining a "growing" league 18-months ago and instead trying to save a dying one, Texas and its athletic director have put the Longhorn program in a difficult situation.
It's time for Dodds to rethink his grand plan.
The days of 10-team conferences are going to be a thing of the past, at least at the major conference level.
With the Big 10's and SEC's move to 14-team leagues, the Big 12 must now face a reality that perhaps Dodds felt was only a remote possibility a year ago.
The Big 12, by virtue of numbers, is being put into a position of weakness.
Now, it's not the same level of weakness as the Big East which is going to be all but disbanded for football if and when UConn heads to the ACC. But it'll still be weak by numbers.
So how does the recent move by the Big 10 directly effect Texas?
It all comes down to the four-team NCAA playoff.
First, if Texas is ever undefeated after the regular season, then the Horns would make a playoff. So in that way, it wouldn't hurt the Horns, except for possibly garnering a lower seeding among the four ranked teams that move into the playoff.
However, consider this scenario.
What happens if a one-loss Texas team that wins the Big 12 is not invited to the four-team playoff because...
* The Big 10 and SEC have guaranteed themselves a spot at the table, even potentially a two-loss SEC or Big 10 team
* The Pac-12 and ACC are ostensibly stronger leagues by virtue of membership size and they also have one-win teams as champions and also have league championship games
* Then there's the curious case of Notre Dame to consider, which is now back in the national picture
I'll tell you what would happen.
There wouldn't be many seats at the playoff table, very possibly not enough for Texas to get an invite.
Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby needs to look at his options and get moving.
With the recent movements by the Big 10, operating status quo in the Big 12 is no longer acceptable and will hurt the Longhorns.
But the Longhorns should keep their options open and that should include not being party to the Big 12.
Perhaps a move outside of the Big 12 is the answer for Texas.
The Longhorns already act like an independent in many ways (and oftentimes I see that as a good thing).
But the Big 10 and the SEC with cable networks could likely easily be maneuvered into given the relative soft acceptance of the LHN, especially the SEC since ESPN will be running that network. (Fox runs the Big 10.)
The Horns need to think long about moving conferences and no longer playing savior to Baylor, Tech, Kansas State, TCU and Iowa State. It might take Deloss Dodds stepping down for it to happen, since he's one of the key architects of the league since inception and every iteration since.
Texas needs to consider its options. Period.
And sitting back, waiting on things to happen, well, it doesn't seem like that plan is working very well.
Follow on Twitter: http://twitter.com/BobbyBurton247
I don't disagree with the premise but how does Texas reconcile a 13-year GOR it just signed in order to leave? Is that clause negotiable?
Wow!! Check out the big insights from Bobby!!! Unfortunately there is no one at UT who can think at this level and that is very unlikely to ever change. Dodds could care less if UT gets left out of a MNC shot compared to keeping a status quo that he thinks he can dominate and MNCs are very unlikely to be an issue as long as he and Mack are around. Bowlsby is a nutless wonder.
Has it actually been signed? Last I heard it still had not.
If that's the case, game on. And surely the great Larry Scott could close for once on his third try.
Bobby, could you elaborate for those of us who haven't been following this closely? You're saying that a 12-1 Big 10 champ Michigan would make the playoff over an 11-1 Big XII champ Texas because Michigan is the champion of a larger conference? Or because Michigan has one extra win as the result of playing in the conference championship? Or because the Big 10 is a higher quality conference than the Big XII? Am I missing something?
Bobby, can you explain what you mean when you say that the Big10 and SEC have "guaranteed themselves a spot at the table, even a two-loss SEC or Big10 team"? I was under the impression that the playoff teams were to be chosen by a selection committee. Are there guaranteed spots? Maybe I'm just behind.
Yeah, that sounded like nonsense to me. If we are still using the BCS rankings to select the playoff teams, the computers have the big12 higher than the big and ACC.
And the big10 just got overall weaker IMO.
That said, I do think Texas and OU should put out feelers to all 3 conferences and see if anybody wants to make a deal.
DeLo$$ and his obession with the LHN will cost Texas bigtime. Should've joined the Pac 10 in 2010
Honestly, as long as Mack is here we won't sniff that playoff spot so there's no reason to worry about it at this point. If Mack ever does retire and we get a true coach in house then it could be a big issue for us.
I think between the ACC and the Big 12, this makes the ACC more vulnerable. I wonder if Pitt and Syracuse might back out of joining the ACC and join the Big 10 instead - just don't think the Big 10 will stay at 14, think they will go to 16 or maybe even 18.
And then, I think Virginia Tech, Clemson, FSU, and Miami could all leave the ACC, too, going to either the SEC or the Big 12.
I agree, Bobby. The Big 12 needs to act and act now. I hate expansion with the wrong teams (BYU, Houston, Cinn, etc.) but think it's required for the right teams (FSU, etc.). I've been puzzled by the lack of action and I fear that DeLoss is one of the main reasons for the inaction. If DeLoss is in the way of expansion then he needs to go.
Question, how would Texas have other options given the grant of rights?
I can't see Dodds, Bowlsby, and the BIG12 AD's changing their philosophy based on movement by Rutgers and Marlyand.
I think I might agree with them.
Does FSU and Clemson or Georgia Tech joining us make you view the situation any differently, Bobby?
I'm afraid that I find it hard to believe that Texas has been acting altruistically over the last few years rather than primarily in pursuit of its own interests.
Bobby is like me still holding on to dreams of moving to the SEC.
I wonder if we are starting to see the wheels falling off of our program slowly. I work in IT and I remember Microsoft being the dominant company in terms of innovation and success. They never truly failed but Microsoft lost out on taking advantage of its success and growing in other markets.
This allowed Google, Apple, and even Oracle to dominate nitch markets and overtake microsoft in some areas. Microsoft is now finally making a recovery after about a 10 year period of slow growth and development.
That is how I am starting to feel about Texas. Adding teams like FSU, Miami, Georgia Tech, Louisville expand our football brand east much like Texas A&M has and now Texas A&M is benefiting from it.
Microsoft had guys in charge who became cocky and complacent and caused them to miss out on innovations such as facebook, search (Google) and they never truly caught up. All of the young Standford graduates went to work at Google, Oracle, and Apple.
I worry that this is where we are headed. We have a lot of cocky arrogant old guys in charge that seem to be fascinated with stuffing their pockets and not concerned about the big picture and long term success.
just my 2 cents
This post was edited by deronjohn 17 months ago
Texas could easily leave the conference but they would forfeit any and all TV revenue for 13 years. $270m is a big nut for any school to cover.
The only way I see OUT of the Big 12 is for the league to simply dissolve and everyone goes their separate ways. Four schools to Pac 12, maybe a couple to B1G, rest to ACC and SEC? That's not going to happen though.
The way out of this is for the Big 12 to add two football centric ACC schools.
Maryland leaving was a huge bomb to the ACC. UM negotiated behind closed doors for weeks, if not months. They were a founding member of the ACC. The key is to watch what kind of exit fees Maryland can negotiate. Everyone knows the $50m fee was a joke and won't stand up in court and I bet they won't even pay half that.
FSU, Clemson, and Gtech are beyond pissed. The BOT CHairmen for Clemson even made a public statement saying they are hoping the ACC adds a school with "significant football prowess". But reports are already circulating that UCONN will be Marlyand's replacement despite objections from GTECH, FSU and CLemson.
Finally, I don't think the B1G is done with the ACC either. I think they poach Gtech and probably UVA or UNC. The B1G is even going to add East Coast offices. They are going to dismantle the ACC and the SEC and Big 12 will clean things up. Whoever is left in the ACC will combine with Big East for a basketball centric conference.
The B1G and SEC will be the biggest brands in CFB and continue to expand their markets. SEC hates being at 14 so they will take Vtech and NCState to add to their footprint. Big 12 will counter with FSU, Clemson, and LVille.
Larry Scott probably knew these events would happen one day and that;s why he made such a big play for teams in the Big 12. Unless he throws in a last minute hail mary, I think the Big 12 is adding teams.
To add on to my post above, the Longhorn Network should be the catalyst for us trying to add TV Sets to the conference. If for no other reason expanding into Florida and making our program available to those kids. Florida kids will go out of state a higher rate than Texas. It seems to be the trend there.
We have a lot of closed minded thinkers in our program if they are only looking at the football side of things. Our brand we be way more powerful with yearly games in Florida.
You're missing it if you think this is about Maryland and Rutgers. The move by the Big 10 shows a great deal about the strategy of other conferences and it shows the potential weakness of the ACC.
The Big 12 is a very good football league but I don't believe this is a normal year. Lose a couple of the coaches at TCU, Baylor, Kansas State and Iowa State and those programs are back to their traditional norm (poor performance). We could very easily be part of a conference that is viewed as weak on the football field. The Big 12 is generally not given a lot of respect outside the region (spend time in Atlanta, Chicago, LA and NYC and it's apparent). And the conference is a distant 5th in demographics/population compared to the ACC, SEC, Big 10 and Pac12.
An FSU and Clemson addition to the Big 12 would immediately change the demographic/population issue and would provide two very strong traditional football schools.
I agree and not just football, basketball is important as well in helping gain attention to a conference. That is why I would love for Louisville to come on board.
Despite what is said publicly, I suspect that the Big 12, Texas and other big-time programs (like OU, ND, FSU, etc.) have continued to examine their options under the radar and have kept lines of communication open about various re-alignment scenarios. I cannot imagine Bowlsby, Dodds, Castiglione, or any of the other powers-that-be remaining totally idle when the college football landscape continues to be so fluid. Those guys have been around long enough to know better.
This post was edited by Danno2 17 months ago
I'm sure there has been and is communication. Planners plan well in advance of transformations.
This post was edited by Bruce7 17 months ago
"Don't know. Never had one"
-- D. Royal-Mack Brown how to coach a team after a losing season
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