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Big 12 considering partnership with ACC, other leagues

Bob Bowlsby AP

As much as we here at CFT would like the topic of expansion and conference realignment to be over and done with, we understand that’s an unrealistic request.

However, the Big 12 is considering an alternative to expansion that should still make for interesting offseason conversation. In an interview with the Austin-American Statesman, Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said his league is looking into an alliance with the ACC and two other unspecified conferences. The focus of the potential partnership — Bowlsby added that “nothing is imminent”  — would be on scheduling, marketing and perhaps television. It could also span a variety of sports, not just football and basketball.

“We’ve had conversations with three other leagues,” Bowlsby told the Statesman. “The ACC is one of them. It’s a process of discovery that would provide some of the benefits of larger membership without actually adding members.

“You can begin to get some advantages without taking on any of the disadvantages (of expansion). It’s one option that allows benefits. It’s kind of like friends with benefits.”

Before moving on, we’re going to let that last line sink in.

Anyway, Big 12 athletic directors are set to meet early next week in Grapevine, Tx., where the idea will likely be discussed. It’s an interesting proposal, although the reasoning is not necessarily unprecedented. The Big 12 and SEC came together over the past year to form the “Champions Bowl,” which later morphed into the Sugar Bowl. The Big Ten and Pac-12 also ventured into the idea of a scheduling agreement in late 2011, although that was put on hold about six months later.

But both agreements were about conferences taking further control of a quality product and maximizing its appeal, exposure and profitability. While the nitty gritty details of this proposed alliance aren’t known and probably won’t be known for a while — this is assuming the deal gets done — the goal is essentially the same.

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6 Responses to “Big 12 considering partnership with ACC, other leagues”
  1. dmcgrann says: Jan 25, 2013 9:09 PM

    He really used the term “friends with benefits”? I suppose it’s better than “It’s kind of like ménage à trois”, but more than just one of them.”

    Though my personal experience with the sort of thing he’s apparently referring to is nil, I have often heard that there’s always one party in the group who ends up dissatisfied.

  2. jeremyb91 says: Jan 26, 2013 12:01 AM

    What we are seeing here is the creation of a one large league, rather than the PAC 12, SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, and the ACC so there won’t be anymore moving of teams. There might be some added to the existing conferences, but one Super League is going to become the standard.

  3. handsofsweed says: Jan 26, 2013 10:31 AM

    Is this the beginning of the end of the NCAA?

    Can/would the top 5-6-7-8, whatever, conferences just leave, form their own assosciation, and claim the right to crown the rightful national champ?

  4. deadeye says: Jan 26, 2013 12:48 PM

    “What we are seeing here is the creation of a one large league, rather than the PAC 12, SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, and the ACC so there won’t be anymore moving of teams. There might be some added to the existing conferences, but one Super League is going to become the standard.”

    ========================

    @jeremyb91

    That’s not what we are seeing. We are seeing the BIG12 sending out mixed signals in an attempt to confuse everyone regarding their true intentions. The BIG12 will be meeting this Tuesday with expansion/realignment on the agenda. Let’s wait to see what emerges from that. I think Miami, FSU, and Clemson will be quite interested as well.

  5. guinsrule says: Jan 26, 2013 3:34 PM

    Before these schools jump to far-away conferences, they should look at the impact of all that extra travel has had on WVU’s football and basketball teams…

  6. deadeye says: Jan 26, 2013 11:16 PM

    WVU accepted the invite into the BIG12 with the understanding that there would be eastern expansion down the road. So if the BIG12 ends up with 4 or 5 more eastern teams, WVU will experience reduced travel for conference play.

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