Out of nowhere on Wednesday, college football realignment came back to the forefront in a big, big way. In the dead heat of SEC Media Days, Brent Zwerneman dropped this massive report on the college football world, stating that Oklahoma and Texas have reached out to the SEC about joining.
Very quickly, it appeared that this story had some serious legs to it. Ten years after realignment shook the sport, we’re back at the table once again. This news comes as college football attempts to move from a four-team playoff to a 12-team playoff system in the coming years. This sport appears set to change in a big, big way over the next few years.
Texas and Oklahoma will need 11 out of 14 votes from the current schools in the league for approval. Texas A&M and Missouri will reportedly vote against this expansion, which makes sense considering their move away from the Big 12 just a decade ago.
There’s a long way to go here, but the lack of a true denial from either side speaks volumes. The Big 12 has an expiring television deal in 2025, which could push both schools out of the Big 12 and into free agency of sorts. Texas has been no stranger to realignment rumors, flirting with the Pac-12 during the last push.
If this happens, it would do a couple of different things. The Big 12 would be absolutely demolished, likely forcing those remaining to find new homes. That would create a couple of different super-conferences, with the ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 likely absorbing the remaining teams.
It would also create a 16 team SEC — how would that even work? The current structure of two divisions probably wouldn’t work anymore with eight teams on each side. Four four-team pods have already been discussed, interestingly enough by the SEC Network.
SEC Network, the league’s own TV channel, has some ideas. pic.twitter.com/MSnth9IYMM— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) July 22, 2021
Again, long way to go here, but there’s a sense of inevitability with these rumors and reports as college football continues to transition into the future. The sport we all love is about to change in a massive way, it appears.