Sooners 'desperate' to leave Big 12? OU's president responds
Paul Finebaum, as he usually does, stirred up a hornets nest with his recent comments about the University of Oklahoma and its potential future conference.
On Monday, Finebaum hopped on WJOX radio and said he knew the Sooners “desperately” wanted to leave the Big 12.
“I can think of one school in the Big 12 that would like out pretty desperately, and if that happened, would it have a domino effect? That school is the University of Oklahoma,” Finebaum said.
Well, obviously, Oklahoma’s President David Boren was asked about Finebaum’s comments on the impending doom of the Big 12.
“We’re not desperate to go anywhere else,” Boren told the Tulsa World Thursday. “We’re in pretty stable position with the Big 12.”
Finebaum’s biggest reasoning is the lack of a television network for the conference, and that’s hurting every team not named Texas.
“I think the Big 12 is in trouble and I think this is something we’ve been able to detect for some time. I don’t think the Big 12 as we know it will still be in existence in five years,” Finebaum said Monday. “There are schools in the Big 12 that have looked to get out, and I think, continue to look to get out. They can deny it all they want but they don’t have the what the SEC, Big Ten, Pac-12 and what the ACC are going to have, and that’s their own network — which is critical in this world of exploding television reality. I don’t know how you can survive like that.”
Boren was also asked about the financial implications of Finebaum’s comments, and his response was that the Big 12 isn’t that far out of whack and remains competitive with other leagues.
“Financially, it’s not a great hardship, frankly,” Boren said Thursday. “What we’re getting per school is not really out of line with others.”
After the Big 12’s grant of rights expires in 2024-25, Oklahoma would be free to look at other conferences without any penalty.
To make matters more interesting, on Wednesday, The Oklahoman columnist Berry Tramel jumped on Finebaum’s show with some eye-raising comments, saying Sooners fans are done with the Big 12 and are ready to jump to the SEC.
.@BerryTramel says OU fans are done with the Big 12.
"They are ready for the SEC & it's fairly overwhelming. It's wide support for the SEC"
— Paul Finebaum (@finebaum) May 10, 2017
Will this topic continue to pick up momentum?
As Steve Spurrier likes to put it — “talking season” is in full force, and what better to talk about than potential conference expansion.