Report: Texas, Oklahoma expected to soon inform Big 12 they plan to leave conference
Texas and Oklahoma’s days in the Big 12 appear to be numbered.
On the same day of news that Texas and Oklahoma have reached out to the SEC, Rivals’ Texas site Orangebloods is reporting that the two schools are close to informing the Big 12 that they plan to leave the conference:
A high-level university official informed Orangebloods the expectation is that Texas and Oklahoma would inform the Big 12 as early as next week that both schools intend to decline on extending the existing set of media rights. The contract expires in 2025.
The Orangebloods article follows the bombshell report from Brent Zwerneman of the Houston Chronicle that Texas and Oklahoma reached out to the SEC. If the Longhorns and Sooners are looking to join the SEC upon exiting the Big 12, Texas A&M’s objections may not be able to stop it from happening.
Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports tweeted Wednesday evening, “A&M’s very public objections are the strongest, and getting 11 of the 14 votes doesn’t appear to be an issue.” Eleven of the 14 SEC schools have to vote in favor of adding a new school. There was a report that Missouri would also vote against adding Oklahoma and Texas.
Texas A&M AD Ross Bjork told Paul Finebaum on Wednesday afternoon that one of the reasons Texas A&M left the Big 12 for the SEC was wanting to have a “standalone identity” in the state of Texas.
“The SEC has been a perfect fit for us,” Bjork said on the show. “We want to maintain that same identity. Perhaps there’s a reason that Texas and Oklahoma are looking around – if that’s the case.”
Bjork added, “We love being in the SEC. We love being the only (SEC) program in the state of Texas. We’re going to maintain that position, but we’re also going to make sure that we are a leader in college athletics and we’ll see what the future holds.”
The Orangebloods reports adds that Texas’ move to the SEC would signal the end of the Longhorn Network “and that the school has come to terms with this.” The article also mentions the possibility of LHN “folding into” the SEC Network.