It appears the Big 12 meetings were fairly hectic on Thursday, with reports that the Pac-10 is now looking to expand to 16 teams, with the new six all coming from the Big 12: Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Colorado.
Golly. That would be a dramatic change in big-time college sports.
The Pac-10, according to the reports, would then split into two divisions, with Arizona and Arizona State joining the Big 12 six and the old Pac-8 forming the other division.
Pac-10 commissioner Larry Scott released a statement on the matter to The Sporting News:
"We are aware of a story filed today by an Orangebloods.com columnist, speculating about possible expansion plans for the Pac-10 Conference. While many interesting scenarios have been suggested in numerous news reports, around the country, we remain focused on a thorough evaluation process that examines all of the options for increasing the value of the conference for our member institutions, our student athletes and our fans. We have not developed any definitive plans. We have not extended any invitations for expansion and we do not anticipate any such decisions in the near term."
Earlier in the day, Scott told me point blank that no major news would come out of the Pac-10 meetings this weekend. Despite this report, Scott may still prove correct. There are a lot of hoops to jump through before we'd get a "Pac-16".
Another source who will be attending the meetings this weekend in San Francisco said that Scott had presented a variety of expansion scenarios to the Pac-10 presidents, including this 16-team version. It's possible this version will lead the agenda this weekend. Colorado athletic director Mike Bohn told the Boulder (Colo.) Daily Camera that his school and the other five are expecting overtures from the Pac-10.
"The longer that we were together in Kansas City it appeared that that rumor or speculation did have some validity to it," Bohn told the newspaper.
That about sums it up. For weeks we've had lots of speculation. We may not be, in fact, that close to an endgame.
But the speculation may have some legs.