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Realignment Evening Update: Conference Consolidation Might Include Not-So-Superconferences


The OU board of regents had a meeting today and authorized president David Boren to take action on realignment. That's the same action Texas A&M's board took with its president Bowen Loftin prior to it joining the SEC. Boren says he's has conversations with the Pac-12 that were both "informal" and "constructive. He also said that staying in the Big 12 is "still on the table", while noting that litigation is not a good method for keeping a conference together.

Texas' board of regents did a similar thing with its president Bill Powers, and he also said staying in the Big 12 is a possibility. There is one key difference though: Powers can choose to stay in the Big 12, but the regents reserved the authority for changing leagues.


CBS is reporting that the Big East and Big 12 have been discussing a potential merger if Texas and Oklahoma both leave the Big 12. Such a merger clears up the issue of whether the Big 12 remnants would technically be joining the Big East or vice versa. It also would provide a home for all of the teams currently in BCS leagues that don't get invitations to the Pac-12, SEC, Big Ten, or ACC.

Whether or not that new league would get a BCS auto-bid is obviously unknown at this point, as we're a long way from that merger even happening. Heck, we don't even know if we'd have a BCS should that merger need to come to pass. It does go to show that the leadership of the two leagues know their conferences are in big danger right now and are acting to protect all of their members.


MW commissioner Craig Thompson said that he has once again been talking with Conference USA about a football-only merger of the two leagues. Such a "federation", to use Thompson's word, would provide some stability for the members and be beneficial in a number of financial dealings like TV deals and marketing. He also said it would be best if the leagues would be symmetrical, meaning the MW would need to add two more schools prior to going forward with the project.

Utah State is one school linked with a potential MW invite in the past. As far as inviting a former member goes, Thompson says he's opposed to bringing back TCU. He doesn't make those decisions, though. He mentioned that this CUSA merger is merely at a "conceptual" phase, and he's also reached out to some Big 12 and Big East schools.