Death blow to the Big XII?

In the ongoing soap opera that has become the realignment debate and the life line of the Big XII, every scenario has been questioned. But this last week, Oklahoma has seemed to start the process of heading west and joining the Pac12. Even that has been refuted by some “sources” close to the situation.

From everything I can gather, this is something that is seriously being considered. And if this does happen, then it would lay the final death blow to the Big XII. One reason I am starting to believe this is going to happen, is because the Oklahoma regents plan to meet and discuss the idea of applying to the Pac12 next week. The Big XII has been living on borrowed time for the last year, and it looks like everybody will find a new home for 2012, unless Baylor finds a way to sue everybody and win.

While it will be sad to see the Big XII come to an end, it seems that it will be for the best because nobody is happy with the way the conference is structured, and that is putting Aggie jealousy aside. Texas has other options, but the smaller schools will be left out in the cold. It will be sad for the people in this region to lose the games this conference brings, but it will be more exciting to see what rivalries are built in the super conferences.

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Thoughts on Realignment

 

There is nothing more maddening in the course of the college football season and in some cases the off season than the now ever present talk of conference realignment. You can’t bring up the subject to anyone without them saying “I heard from someone that they had sources and team A was going to move to conference B”. We all know what is going to happen eventually, there will be “Super Conferences” Why don’t we just go ahead and make it happen, and then everyone can quit talking and jumping on every small rumor that seems to come out on a daily basis. It has become a never ending cycle of this conference wants that team, or this team wants to move to another conference. This has been going on for over a year now and it is just really getting tiring.

 Texas A&M was the first team to make a serious push to move to another conference this year, given A&M has been flirting with the SEC since the inception of the Big XII, so many inside the state aren’t surprised that they finally made the move. Even if that move was to try and get out of the shadow of Texas, but even in a new conference they will always be looked at and treated like Texas’ little brother. They will just now take a ritual beating in the SEC every week. I find it funny that Baylor, the one school who will get relegated to a nothing conference, is trying to put up a front and stop the change. Funny thing is Baylor turned its back on the other small schools in Texas to ride the Longhorns and Aggies coat tails into the Big XII. But I will have more on this thought at another time.

 This is a time when the Big XII is days away from imploding, it is a foregone conclusion that everyone will ultimately will find a new home, even if it isn’t the one they really want. Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Texas have been rumored to look west to the Pac 12, but there will only be one hindrance for Texas moving out there. Texas and ESPN wants to keep the Longhorn Network intact as is, but the Pac 12 doesn’t want teams having their own networks. But then there have been rumors of the Big 10(12) has made some overtures to Texas (wouldn’t that piss Nebraska off). Other teams from the soon to be dead Big XII have had their names tied to other conferences, at this point it feels like they should go ahead and disband the conference and let teams spend the rest of this year aligning themselves to conferences that fit their best interest. But Baylor, Kansas State and Iowa State would all block that, because they would be the little orphans left out in the cold.

 The end is inevitable, but how long can some of the “hangers on” keep the conference alive? Just so they can have one more season of BCS conference payouts? There are a lot more politics and pandering that will go on before a final verdict is laid down to the public. But any sane and reasonable fan can see that the writing is on the wall, save us all some grief and just get it over with. I would only hope some of the long term rivalries that have made the Big XII great would continue for decades to come, but that will only be decided between the schools as they split off in their own directions. Until we get to the “Super Conferences” this will just be an on going story and will brow beat every college football fan into just not caring anymore. I hate to see the end of the Big XII, but there is no way to keep everyone happy and keep the conference viable, because it is impossible that Notre Dame would agree to become a member and even though I love the history of the old Southwest Conference, adding former SWC teams would only drag the conference down for the top teams.

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Billy Clyde Gillispie is back in the Big XII

That’s right, it was announced last night that the man responsible for giving Texas A&M a basketball face has returned to the Big XII conference. This time he has just returned to the Barron waste land that is Lubbock, Texas at Texas Tech. Which is funny because this is the same school that hired Bob Knight after he got ran out of Indiana for his temper. Texas Tech has never been a big threat in the Big XII in basketball and Bob Knight didn’t really change that, so I guess they feel like bringing him Gillispie can help fix that situation.

This is a solid chance to make a new name for himself after his DUI problems from Kentucky. Gillispie is a good recruiter and a solid coach, but much like the A&M job, this is going to test his reputation to the fullest. If Billy Clyde can turn things around in Lubbock, then he will have a chance to get another decent gig in College Basketball. Then again, after falling off the pinnacle of college basketball, he may be happy to just settle in and call Lubbock home for a while.

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Kody’s Sports Korner Bowl Preview; Part 3

If you  have missed the first two bowl previews I did, check out part 1 here and part 2 here

TicketCity Bowl:
Northwestern vs Texas Tech –
Sadly this New Year will begin with this lackluster bowl. In the inaugural Ticket City Bowl in Dallas, there will be a first time meeting between the Northwestern Wildcats and Texas Tech Red Raiders. While Northwestern is looking for it’s first bowl win since 1949, Texas Tech has some concerns if it’s coach will be around for next year. But all of that aside, there are a lot questions on how will Northwestern handle the pass heavy attack of the Red Raiders. Sadly to say, Northwestern will not get it’s first bowl win here. They will be lucky to stay within 21 points of the Red Raiders.
Prediction: Texas Tech 52 – Northwestern 21

Outback Bowl:
Florida vs Penn St
:
When this match up was announced, you figured there would be retirement talks from one coach. But the coach who is going to step down isn’t the 84 year old Joe Paterno, but the 46 year old Urban Meyer. While this is a shock to most, it isn’t that big of a shock after last years flip flop. The big question about this game will be whether or not Penn State can contain a good Florida team. After their struggles with an Alabama squad earlier in the year, I don’t see this one being pretty for the Nittany Lions.
Prediction: Florida 35 – Penn State 14

Capital One Bowl:
Alabama vs Michigan St
While most everybody will be expecting Alabama to roll in this game, I expect to see Michigan St give Alabama a run for their money and pull off a upset. Michigan State has been an underrated team all year and is probably the best team coming out of the Big Ten this season. Expect an exciting game, one that should give the Big Ten it’s few bowl wins this season.
Prediction: Michigan State 28 – Alabama 21

Gator Bowl:
Mississippi St vs Michigan
This is a very ho hum match up, there are a lot of better game to watch and I am sure Michigan won’t show up so they can assure to get rid of Rich Rod. That being said, Dan Mullen will have Mississippi State ready to play. Expect this one to be a blow out.
Prediction: Mississippi State 35 – Michigan 17

GoDaddy.com Bowl:
Middle Tennessee vs Miami(OH)
For a match up of two teams that nobody cares about outside of their respective cities. This could be a good game to watch for college football enthusiasts. Miami is going to be playing with a lot of momentum from their surprise win at the MAC championship. Meanwhile Middle Tennessee is trying to get one more win and finish with a winning record. Should be a good game and expect it to be a close one.
Prediction: Miami (OH) 24 – Middle Tennessee 21

Cotton Bowl:
LSU vs Texas A&M
In one of the more exciting bowl match ups, this game should be a lot of fun to watch. But don’t expect to see any surprises here as LSU should be able to find a way to win this game and put another notch in the belt for the SEC. Only question will be if Les Miles will have some Tiger Stadium grass available at this game.
Prediction: LSU 35 – Texas A&M 28

Compass Bowl:
Pittsburgh vs Kentucky
While everyone has Pitt as their favorite and expects them to win this game, Kentucky has been able to hang tough when least expected to. This could be a spring board into next season for the Wildcats and look for a very exciting game between these two teams.
Prediction: Kentucky 28 – Pitt 21

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl:
Nevada vs Boston College
Expect Nevada to play with a lot of pride and be able to move the ball at will on Boston College. This is not going to be a pretty game for the Eagles, but it could be a very close game throughout if Boston College can contain the Pistol.
Prediction: Nevada 42 – Boston College 21

That is the last of the bowl previews for the lesser bowl games. Check back soon for the BCS Preview.