Still on speaking terms? Greg Sankey discusses state of relationship with Bob Bowlsby
If there’s one relationship in jeopardy given the move of Texas and Oklahoma to the SEC, it’s SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey’s with Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby.
Sankey addressed the situation during a recent episode of The Paul Finebaum Show, and explained the current dynamic. Their relationship, of course, goes beyond the conference moves.
Bowlsby and Sankey were two of the four members of the CFP subcommittee who spent the past two years working on developing the proposal for a 12-team format, along with Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick.
“I have had the opportunity to be in various settings around conference commissioners as these matters have played out in real-time,” Sankey said, per 247Sports. “Way back in the early 2000s, right in advance of a full gathering of conference commissioners, there was the addition by the ACC of Big East members. You can imagine the tensions there, play it forward — I was traveling to another full gathering, all the Division I conference commissioners in June of 2010, when the Pac-10 at the time was looking to extend itself into Texas and Oklahoma, and the six universities being approached there.
“I’ve had subsequent opportunities to watch colleagues work through those issues with expansion, again at the ACC to the Big East, or the Big Ten adding members from the Big East and ACC, and there are those moments we all have a responsibility to guide forward to work, obviously, to lead our conferences and I’m certain that we will, we will work to do so.”
The date of the move of Texas and Oklahoma is still up for debate, even though many figure that it’ll happen before the expected 2025 date.
“We’ve been focused on a July 1, 2025 date. Both universities have relationships in their current conference that extends through that period of time and we want to be respectful of that reality,” Sankey said. “And this has a ways to go, we’re kind of dealing with a similar situation with our friends at CBS Sports as we work through a contract in a really healthy way for broadcasting our games. They’ve done great work, we want to be great partners. So, our focus is forward-looking, and begins with the opportunity presented on July 1, 2025.”