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Big 12 outlines exit procedures for A&M

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And now the legal processes are beginning to be implemented in the likely divorce between Texas A&M and the Big 12.

The Aggies took the first step toward shifting their conference affiliation last week when the school issued a notice to Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe indicating they were intent on exploring all options for a future home. Additionally, and in a more subtle way, it asked the Big 12 what the guidelines were associated with a potential move.

Earlier today, the Big 12 responded with a letter to A&M that reportedly “outlines the withdrawal procedures according to the financial provisions of the Big 12 bylaws and mutual waivers of legal claims.”

In other words, the letter expresses how A&M, the SEC and the Big 12 can avoid a tri-entity legal cage match. The full letter hasn’t been released yet (that we know of), but if we’re able to get our hands on it, we’ll definitely post it.

In the event that A&M joins the SEC in 2012 — and we’ve had plenty of reasons to believe that’s still the goal — the Aggies could be asked to relinquish at least 90 percent of their conference revenue payout to the Big 12, which is somewhere in the ballpark of $30 million.

Chances are, though, that number will be negotiated.

Also up in the air is, once again, when the Aggies plan on making a move, if* a move is coming. According to A&M president R. Bowen Loftin, who has been given complete control over this potential exit, that decision could come sooner rather than later, despite previous statements to the contrary.

(*note: sorry, we still have to say that)

“I certainly appreciate the discussion among the Big 12 presidents/chancellors and the expression of their desire for Texas A&M to remain in the conference,” Loftin said in a statement. “We all agree that Texas A&M is an extremely valuable institution; thus, it is incumbent upon me, as the president of the university, to ensure that we are in a position to enhance our national visibility and future financial opportunity.

“While this is a complex and long-term decision, it is not our intent to prolong our conference exploration for an extended period of time.”

And it shouldn’t be. Texas A&M has made clear their feelings on the Big 12, and barring some radical culture change in Beebe’s office (or a legal roadblock), they’re not going to change their mind. Likewise, the Big 12 has already put together a short list of replacement candidates, so it’s easy to see where their focus lies.

Now, it looks to be that sorting through the financial consequences of a split is the next — and perhaps last — item on the agenda for both parties.

UPDATED 8:24 p.m. ET: Chip Brown of reports that multiple sources have said A&M will formally announce a move to the SEC tomorrow (Tuesday). As Brown always concludes, stay tuned on this one.

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9 Responses to “Big 12 outlines exit procedures for A&M”
  1. scardino says: Aug 29, 2011 7:54 PM

    “…and the money shall set you free.”

  2. isucyfanatic says: Aug 29, 2011 8:17 PM

    Welcome BYU, WE will be glad to see you.

  3. bigdawg24 says: Aug 29, 2011 8:36 PM


  4. Deb says: Aug 29, 2011 9:20 PM

    No, Mizzou, do not follow A&M to the SEC.

    bigdawg24, why do you want Missouri in the SEC???

    As a Mizzou alum, a Bama diehard, and an SEC fan, I don’t want Mizzou in the SEC. NO!

    The Aggies will enter our Western Division, so we need a school to balance in the Eastern Division–preferably a Southern school. Missouri would be better off going to the Big 10.

  5. bmac34 says: Aug 29, 2011 9:57 PM

    Hey ISU fan. BYU isn’t coming to the Big??. Who would? Have fun begging the Mountain West for a spot in their “league” in 2013.

  6. florida727 says: Aug 29, 2011 10:26 PM

    I guess he was right. A friend of mine with close ties high up within the A&M situation told me an announcement of some sort will happen “no later than September 1st”. He said “it’s a done deal”. Never figured he actually knew what he was talking about :)

    Welcome to the big time Aggies!

  7. gatorb8 says: Aug 29, 2011 10:43 PM

    The article linked to Orangebloods states they are looking at Arkansas as a replacement….not a chance in hell Arkansas leaves the SEC for the Big 12*. Especially so they can live in Texas’ shadow and have to deal with the possibility of the Big 12* crumbling every year and being left high and dry.

  8. TxGrown says: Aug 29, 2011 11:11 PM

    Good for you and good luck Aggies!

  9. squackduckhawk says: Aug 30, 2011 3:20 AM

    This is a win-win-win situation for A&M. The only sport that they will be hurting in as far as the SEC is concerned is football. On the bright side of that, they will earn more revenue. A&M has won a lot of championships in other sports in recent years. I find it ironic that football is the sport that dropped the first fly in this Lone Star contest of urinary fortitude because A&M just almost became a contender for relevance in the Big 12 again. Now I don’t see a credible bowl game happening for them for quite awhile. Arkansas is a tossup as far as I’m concerned for one reason, and that is that they could start winning conference championships again. It’s nice to sit around and earn millions for no reason, but Arkansas used to be known as a serious football school, and Razorback fans are getting tired of obscurity.

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