Big 12 football: Expand to BYU, Louisville
TCU apparently is headed for the Big East, which makes no geographic sense, but that long ago quit mattering. Tampa, Fort Worth and Syracuse, N.Y. That’s not the Big East. That’s the Big America.
But anyway, TCU’s apparent decision to join the Big East is a clear indication that the Big 12 meant its stated intention to NOT expand with a Texas school. I personally think that if TCU had made the national championship game and won, the Big 12 would have been under intense pressure to invite the Horned Frogs.
How could a league with a couple of openings NOT invite a school 20 miles from the conference office that wants to join and has just won a national title? I think the Big 12 might have had to pull that trigger; invite TCU and BYU and hope BYU’s strong television presence would be enough to offset the Frogs’ lack of TV prowess.
All this conference realignment — Big Ten and Pac-10 expansion to 12 teams, allowing for a league championship game; BYU, Utah and TCU fleeing the Mountain West — leaves the Big 12 vulnerable.
I know the Big 12 likes the idea of the same amount of money split among 10 mouths rather than 12, but the conference appears weak falling back to 10 and losing a championship game.
I think, more than ever before, the Big 12 has to get back to a dozen. And I say BYU and Louisville are the way to go.
Louisville has a strong athletic program, and its football program is coming back under first-year coach Charlie Strong. UL has a good fan base, and Louisville would provide a good TV market. It ranks in the 40s, around Oklahoma City.
And BYU is a home run, except for the proximity. It’s 1,000 miles from Kansas City to Provo, Utah. The Cougars play big-time football, despite this season, and are a basketball force, too. BYU has a great TV market (top-50) and even better, a national television presence.
BYU and Louisville are the way to go.
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