The boards of regents from Texas and Oklahoma both authorized university presidents to act on behalf of the university at Monday afternoon meetings.
The moves clear the way for the Sooners and Longhorns to apply formally to the Pac-12, with whom they have been undergoing discussions in recent days on how to make the schools' addition to the conference work.
On Sunday, those talks were still a long way from the point at which Pac-12 leadership would be comfortable recommending the move to the league's presidents, a source told ESPN.com's Andy Katz. The proposed expansion would include fellow Big 12 schools Oklahoma State and Texas Tech.
Nothing's official yet, of course, but Texas A&M made this same decision on August 15 before formally withdrawing from the Big 12 on August 31.
Texas's president is Bill Powers. Oklahoma's president is David Boren.
The steps are in place for Oklahoma and Texas to follow the Aggies out the Big 12 door, but like Texas A&M, this is just one important step among many before either school joins a new conference.