The 2017 NFL Draft resulted in some embarrassing stats for the Big 12. After two rounds, Temple and Western Michigan each had as many selections as the Big 12 conference had as a whole (2). When the draft’s seven rounds came to an end, the AAC had more selections (15) than the Big 12 (14). The Big 12’s numbers look even worse when you consider the SEC had 53 selections, the ACC had 43, the Pac-12 had 36, and the Big Ten had 35.
While discussing the league’s poor showing over the weekend during his weekly segment on WJOX 94.5 program The Opening Drive, Paul Finebaum shared his thoughts on the impending doom of the league. The SEC Network host and radio personality even went so far as to suggest current members of the Big 12 are actively seeking to abandon the league for better prospects.
The main reason Finebaum gave for his reasoning? The lack of a conference television network is hurting every team in the league outside of Texas. The Longhorns, of course, have their own television network.
“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 on the air. “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.”
After initially keeping his thoughts somewhat vague, Finebaum did name one school he believes wants to get out of 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.
If Oklahoma did decide to leave the Big 12 in the future, it’s hard not to imagine a likely battle between the SEC, Big Ten, and Pac-12 for the right to add one of the nation’s premier schools to the roster.