The Big 12 is in an arms race, and you get the sense that commissioner Brett Yormark knows it.
With the SEC and Big Ten hell-bent on expansion with an eye on building what can only be described as a college football super conference, the Big 12 needs to do what it can to keep pace.
The conference will already be losing Texas and Oklahoma to the SEC, so finding new schools to fill the void left behind while also improving the strength of the conference is a must. It’s certainly a pressing problem for the Big 12, but Yormark does seem to have a plan.
At the very least, he seems to have a direction of expansion in mind.”Obviously going out west is where I would like to go, entering that fourth time zone. A program that has national recognition. One that competes at the highest level in basketball and football, stands for the right things, is a good cultural fit,” Yormark said when asked about potential Big 12 expansion by Justin Williams of The Athletic. “Because our alignment right now and the like-mindedness of all of our member institutions is fantastic. It’s never been better. So I don’t want to compromise that, and that’s critically important that there is the right cultural fit when you think about coming in and being part of what we’re building here.”
With USC and UCLA supposedly leaving the Pac-12 for the Big Ten, it would make sense for Yormark to eye the “leftovers” of the Pac-12 to see if any of those schools in the Pacific time zone could be a fit.
With an eye on both football and basketball, Arizona, Stanford, Washington, and Oregon would all make sense. That is, if the Big 12 is able to pry those schools away from what has to be a very desperate Pac-12 conference at this point.