The SEC has finally awoken, making it known their ideal expansion plans include both Texas and Oklahoma. The link also serves as our hilarious headline of the day. Since I know most of us are a worst case scenario bunch, it should be noted that the SEC's ideal and realistic plans appear to differ greatly. All signs still point to Texas and Oklahoma joining the Pac-10 as early as Tuesday. Instead, the SEC seems to be conceding that they will invite Texas A&M in an effort to increase the conference footprint.
In the Big 10, all has been quiet, with the conference apparently waiting for Notre Dame to choose between independence and Big 10 membership. The most telling quote yesterday came from Tom Osbourne himself, after meeting with Nebraska regents.
One school leaving a conference does not break up a conference," Osborne told the Regents. "Two schools leaving a conference does not break up a conference. Six schools leaving a conference breaks up a conference."
Osbourne is looking to deflect blame for the fall of the Big 12, but this is the first time anyone from the universities involved has made such a solid statement about the conference expansion race.
Big 12 sources continue to contend that the conference will survive while conference commissioner Dan Beebe sits in a corner screaming "LALALALALA I can't hear you" in response to rumors of their demise. In a few weeks, the Big 12 administration may wake up and wonder who dropped a nuclear bomb on their conference. Tom Hansen and Dan Beebe are now in a close race for worst conference commissioner ever.
The MWC is also circling the Big 12 like vultures this weekend, sending out feelers toward the remaining teams that may be left behind. In all of this, the Pac-10 has been eerily quiet about a backup plan if Texas A&M doesn't make a decision this week. Scott and co. are playing their cards close to the vest, with most speculation about a plan B coming from the public. The latest word is that Utah does have the leg up on Kansas in the event A&M declines. If A&M doesn't decide soon, look for names to begin to surface in an effort to force the Aggies' hand.
Consider this your Saturday expansion update. Go enjoy the beautiful Northwest weather. It's the weekend, so I'm sure Larry Scott is off saving the world somewhere and news should be slow. At this point, it appears everything will come to a head on Tuesday with regents' meetings at the Texas and Oklahoma schools. Coincidence? I think not.
Update of Aggie stupidity: The man, the myth, the overnight sensation Chip Brown is reporting Texas A&M has the votes to join the SEC. SEC commissioner Mike Silve is in College Station attempting to gauge the Aggies interest today. Shortly after, perhaps on Monday, Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott will invade Texas, handing out invites to the leftover Big 12 South schools (except you, Baylor). At that point, the Aggies will be on the clock, with a timetable that should be no longer than a few days.