It wasn’t a good sign when the Big 12 presidents meeting ended over two hours early. Now we have several folks saying that the Big 12 has decided not to expand for now, and instead will pursue more dollars from TV deals with ESPN and Fox.
It’s the not-end of a ridiculous saga of “we’re not expanding,” “haha jk yeah we probably are,” “nevermind” that has lasted for the better part of two years.
Pete Thamel from Sports Illustrated, who has been all over this from the beginning, confirmed with a source that the conference would pursue more money in lieu of expansion.
SB Nation sources have also confirmed that there will be no expansion at this time, as has Jake Trotter from ESPN.
Filed to ESPN. No expansion. No candidate could generate supermajority.— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) October 17, 2016
So, for all the folks in the pro-expansion camp who are probably pretty fired up right now, who should you be mad at? David Boren, probably, because he undoubtedly did substantial damage to expansion’s chances by opening his mouth over and over and over again.
But, fret not, for this is absolutely not the final death knell of Big 12 expansion. As long as the conference exists, it will seek to maintain some sort of media spotlight, no matter the cost.
The only people more disappointed than expansion candidates are those who think today is also the end of Big 12 expansion chatter.— David Ubben (@davidubben) October 17, 2016
You know, it's kind of funny - the Big 12 was pinned down by a room full of media on Baylor questions, yelled "expansion" and we chased it.— Steven Godfrey (@38Godfrey) October 17, 2016
So, while the expansion waters should calm down for now, we’ll be here when the waves begin again.