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Conference Realignment: 2 Scenarios Where Big 12 is Involved

The Big 12 could soon be a major player in the conference chaos, but what would a potential realignment look like?

The Texas Tech Red Raiders are just sitting back and watching the chaos, but could there soon be an additional shift in conference power that gets the Big 12 and Pac-12 more heavily involved? 

Conference realignment has dominated the headlines in college sports as of late after USC and UCLA announced the intent to join the Big Ten.

The rest of the Pac-12 could soon be following suit, though the logistical issue of long travel due to geographical differences makes it hard to imagine other schools on the west coast going to a Big Ten conference that features east coast schools like Rutgers, Maryland, and Penn State. Traveling to schools in the Midwest like Nebraska, Northwestern, Iowa, Ohio State, and others wouldn’t be a monumental task, but Pac-12 schools consistently having to jump into different time zones with every road game isn’t ideal.

Nonetheless, it’s a scenario that could very well take place in the coming seasons.

With that potential looming, the Big 12 could look to add some of the remaining schools from the Pac-12 in order to stay afloat. The acquisitions of Houston, UCF, BYU, and Cincinnati aren’t bad for on-field competitive purposes, but the Big 12 potentially snagging some Pac-12 schools in the event of a conference-realignment frenzy is a realistic plan of action.

Sports Illustrated’s revealed its take on how the Big 12 could stay afloat. By merging with the remaining Pac-12 schools, the Big 12 would become a 20-team super conference.

Here are the suggested teams that could join the Red Raiders in the Big 12 in this potential scenario:

The 20 members: Arizona, Arizona State, Baylor, BYU, Central Florida, Cincinnati, Colorado, Houston, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Oregon State, TCU, Texas Tech, Utah, Washington, Washington State, West Virginia.

An additional, though slightly less ideal route, would be to sit back and see how things play out in the ACC. Recent reports that we later refuted, stated that multiple teams in the ACC could be looking to jump ship as well.

This is far from being certain, though it’s definitely a scenario that makes sense given all the recent chaos.

The second plan proposed by features an 18-team conference that would make travel easier for Big 12 schools like West Virginia but would leave Tech and BYU in a tough geographical pinch.

The 18 members: Baylor, Boston College, BYU, Cincinnati, Central Florida, Houston, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Louisville, Oklahoma State, Pitt, Syracuse, TCU, Texas Tech, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia.

It’s an interesting scenario to consider, though the only thing that remains certain as of now is UCLA and USC joining the Big Ten. But once other teams officially announce intent to leave, regardless of conference, expect the Big 12 to throw its hat in the ring. 

You can follow Zach Dimmitt on Twitter at @ZachDimmitt7

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