As of Oct. 22, Missouri has become the 14th member of the SEC.
Apparently. At least according to the SEC’s official site, secdigitalnetwork.com (the article is now “missing”).
(note: credit needs to be given to Clay Travis of Outkickthecoverage.com for the heads up)
In a press release dated last Saturday, the SEC writes “Given the ever-changing conference paradigm over the past year, the Southeastern Conference has continued to demonstrate its commitment to maintaining its stature as one of the nation’s premier conferences by welcoming the University of Missouri as the league’s 14th member, Commissioner Mike Slive announced Monday.
“Missouri joins Texas A&M University as the league’s two new institutions who will begin full membership on July 1, 2012. It is the first expansion of the SEC membership since Arkansas and South Carolina joined the conference in 1992.”
The problem, of course, is that Missouri isn’t a member of the SEC; they haven’t even left the Big 12 (yet). However, on Oct. 21, the day before the press release was supposedly set to go out, Missouri’s Board of Curators gave chancellor Brady Deaton full power to make all decisions related to conference affiliation. It was a move believed to be one of the final steps for Missouri for what appeared to be an inevitable departure from the Big 12.
However, Missouri has yet to notify the Big 12 of their intentions to leave; that was reportedly supposed to have been done during a Board of Directors meeting on Monday. On Tuesday, it was reported that West Virginia was on track to replace Missouri as the Big 12’s 10th team, but an apparent late surge by Louisville now has the two programs in a dead heat for that final spot in the Big 12 (the rumor is that the Big 12 wishes to remain at 10 members).
In any case, the conference shuffling is in limbo, and Missouri remains in the Big 12 (for now), and WVU and UL remain in the Big East (for now). Was the published web page a huge mistake? A hoax? It’s unclear at this point, but someone’s going to have some explaining to do in the morning.