Although all signs point to the contrary, the Kansas City Sports Commission is imploring Missouri chancellor Brady Deaton to recommend that the school stay in the Big 12.
Earlier this week, Missouri’s Board of Curators gave Deaton the power to explore all conference affiliation options. Deaton also stepped down from his position as chairman of the Big 12 Board of Directors; both signs would lead one to believe that Missouri has enough back channel confidence from another conference, most likely the SEC, that if they left the Big 12, an invitation from the SEC would follow.
At the very least, it appears Missouri has options. Sources have told multiple media outlets that the school’s primary goal is still to join the Big Ten.
But the KC Sports Commission and Convention and Visitor’s Bureau published an open letter to Deaton asking that he consider all variables, such as rivalries and history, before making a decision.
You can read the full letter HERE, but below are some snippets:
“We know that many factors must be considered, including the academic, financial, and alumni relations implications of your decision. And, of course, the history and future of your University’s athletic program.
“That program, as you know, has Midwestern roots more than a century old… We cannot imagine the University of Missouri’s athletics tilting away from this region and the athletic history to which they have contributed so mightily.”
Will it be enough to persuade Missouri to stay? Donors have already reportedly threatened to withhold donations if the school doesn’t leave the Big 12.