Good... nope, not that good of an afternoon we’re having, Coug fans.
You might have heard yesterday around 4pm PT that the Colorado Buffaloes announced that they are leaving the Pac-12 Conference, and heading back to the Big 12 in 2024. This will leave only nine schools in the Pac-12 in 2024.
Colorado leaving Pac-12 to return to Big 12 in 2024, sources told @ActionNetworkHQ. CU will receive full Big 12 share ($31.7M) from ESPN/Fox media deal. Buffs left because of Big 12 stability & Pac-12’s uncertainty, sources said. Announcement Thursdayhttps://t.co/IOo8LWAuTF pic.twitter.com/4Ilq91C0EO— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) July 26, 2023
Colorado was an original member of the Big 12 in 1996, but in 2011 the Buffaloes opted to join the then Pac-10. I actually found the original letter from the Chancellor in 2010- if you’d like to read it, it’s here.
The presidents of the Big 12 voted unanimously on Wednesday night to invite Colorado back to their original dwelling. I’m hesitant to remark that Colorado is “returning home” as I refuse to squander that cherished sentiment with this situation.
The Big 12 promises an ESPN/Fox deal that would bring $31.7 million per school year. Colorado becomes the 13th team in the Big 12, which conference is not without their own turnaround. As of July 1st, 2024, University of Oklahoma and University of Texas will both pack their metaphorical bags and join the SEC. This leaves Baylor, BYU, University of Central Florida, University of Cincinnati, University of Houlston, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, TCU, Texas Tech, and West Virginia to square off against the Buffaloes.
This move for Colorado is likely motivated by several different factors- notably the stability of the TV offer, but could also offer up more recruiting opportunities in the state of Texas. It hasn’t been a secret that the Big 12 has wanted to head west, which also makes me less inclined to be surprised about Colorado’s jump.
I found this article here to be a particularly interesting analytical breakdown. It was published before the news was confirmed, but it takes a look geographically at what this move means for both recruiting and revenue.
I’m not going to pretend to know or understand the ins and outs of this deal. I’m not going to pretend that, at least right now, this entire process isn’t making my head spin. But- I will commiserate with all of you. What a world.