Texas A&M Exit Could Shake College Football

Texas A&M Exit Could Shake College Football

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Another shake up appears likely for college sports.

Texas A&M and the SEC are flirting. The Texas school and the Southeastern Conference have been holding talks, supposedly hatching plans to allow the College Station school to join one of the most powerful athletic conferences in the nation. That possibility has state of Texas officials scrambling, with plans to convene in Austin next Tuesday to discuss the state of college football in the Lonestar State reports ESPN.

SEC Expansion

The Aggies, neither a football or basketball powerhouse, would be a welcome addition to the SEC which counts only one large market, Atlanta, in its portfolio. Texas A&M, due to its proximity to Houston and Dallas, would bring two of the nation’s largest television markets to the conference, allowing the SEC to negotiate an even more lucrative media contract. And, don’t expect the SEC to stop at 13 schools — if the Aggies join, the conference will look immediately to add a 14th member, with Florida State a distinct possibility.

If the SEC grabs the Aggies and the Seminoles, count on the other major conferences to react. The ACC, with 11 schools, would be one team shy of the 12 necessary to continue holding its lucrative conference championship game each December. That means the ACC would seek to poach a school from another league, with the Big East Conference a logical place to look and West Virginia most likely filling that bill.

Big East Panic

That sort of move would leave the Big East lurching just as it is on the cusp of welcoming another Texas school, Texas Christian University, into its fold next fall. 8 won’t be enough for the Big East which most likely will seek to add 2 to 4 schools to enhance its position and to stave the ACC from taking two additional schools and destroying the conference.

The Big 12 conference, already minus two teams and not able to hold a championship football game, would fall to 9 teams with the Aggie’s departure. Possible replacements include Brigham Young University, now playing an independent schedule or perhaps Boise State. The conference will have to move fast as rumors that both Kansas and Kansas State might leave for the Big East would shut down the conference before expansion could take place.

Standing By

The Pac 12 and Big 10, each with twelve schools, wouldn’t need to do a thing, but watch the carnage unfold. However, if any one of the four other major conferences shows signs of deterioration, snapping up two more schools each could strengthen each league’s hand.

This year’s college sports shifting follows on 2010 when Utah and Colorado left for the PAC 12, Nebraska went to the Big Ten and TCU joined the Big East Conference. With more schools at risk, look for conference officials to lose sleep as they try to hold what they have together while considering their options including expansion.

See AlsoBest Football Conference? SEC, of Course.

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