For SEC and Texas A&M fans hoping that a union between the two would go smoothly… it looks like you’re out of luck.
Baylor slowed down the process last week by threatening to sue the SEC (and maybe even Mike Slive) if the Big 12 blew apart. At this point, Iowa State and Kansas also appear to be holding out when it comes to waiving their rights to sue.
The best case scenario for getting things back on track was for the Big 12 to pull together and agree to carry on as a unit. In other words, if Oklahoma agreed to stay, Baylor wouldn’t start filing lawsuits.
Well, according to Orangebloods.com — the Rivals site covering Texas — Oklahoma will apply for Pac-12 membership by the end of the month. As has been made clear throughout this recent wave of realignment talk, if OU goes, so too will Oklahoma State.
According to “a source close to OU’s administration” has told Orangebloods.com that the school’s board of regents is “fed up with the instability in the Big 12.”
This comes one day after The Oklahoman — and former Charleston Post & Courier beatwriter Travis Haney — reported that OU and OSU might not get as cushy an offer from the Pac-12 as they received last year before the league expanded by two. “A Southeastern Conference official” also told the paper over the weekend that the league “expects Texas A&M eventually to be cleared to join the SEC.”
If the Orangebloods.com report is true — big if — we could be looking at a month-long game of chicken. A&M and the SEC might try to wait out Oklahoma and the Pac-12. Even though A&M wants to move yesterday, it would probably be in the school’s best interest to let OU make the first move.
If Oklahoma announces a move first, then Baylor might have a new target for Ken Starr’s legal team. And that might further protect the Aggies and the SEC.
However, knowing that potential lawsuits and time and money and headaches are on the horizon for anyone moving first, it’s likely that we’re in for a long staring contest.
If Oklahoma really is preparing to leave, then this whole mess could be decided by who blinks first — the Sooners or the Aggies.