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Big 12: Oklahoma, Oklahoma State favor four-team playoff

League officials will also discuss future expansion, though some like the current 10-team makeup.
by Berry Tramel Published: May 29, 2012

OU is flexible on the Big 12 expansion question and favors a four-team playoff in the upcoming change to college football's postseason. So said Sooner athletic director Joe Castiglione on Tuesday, the eve of the Big 12 spring meetings in Kansas City, Mo.

OSU, too, favors a four-team playoff but is even more determined to give the Big 12's current 10-school format time to prosper, said Cowboy athletic director Mike Holder.

Big 12 officials are expected to address the two mammoth issues pervading college football in recent months — realignment and a change to the Bowl Championship Series format. Castiglione said he doesn't expect the Big 12 will take any action but does think the conference decision-makers will gauge each other's current stances.

In recent weeks, various reports — plus the Big 12's announced partnership with the Southeastern Conference, for the champions of the two leagues to meet in a bowl game starting with the 2014 season — have put Florida State and others from the Atlantic Coast Conference as potential Big 12 members.

“Oklahoma's view on expansion is one of open-mindedness,” Castiglione said. “Essentially, we're happy where we are, we like the (10-team) model we have in place … that particular model is working for us.

“But we're open-minded about future expansion — something that leads to long-term stability and growth. We're not interested in adding institutions just to grow to a certain number.”

Neither is OSU. Holder said the Big 12's new solid status is a welcome change from the last two years, when defections to other conferences left the Big 12 in jeopardy.

“It's just nice to be stable,” Holder said. “There's a whole different perspective and attitude right now than there was one year ago or two years ago. It's a welcome change.”

“I don't think we'll do a lot of talking about expansion right now. I think everyone's happy with 10. They'd like to let things stabilize right now, find out what's going to happen with the playoffs.”

College football power-brokers have spent the spring debating changes to the postseason, be it a four-team playoff that includes the bowls totally, partially or not at all, and even a two-team playoff that takes places after the bowls, as opposed to the two-team playoff that is part of the bowl system.

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by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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