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If A&M ever does decide to renew the rivalry it should be on their terms only.  Which should include:

1.  No Big XII officiating crews--neutral conference ones only

2.  No games EVER to be shown on Longhorn Network.

1 year ago on The Power Shift In Texas Continues At BreakNeck Speed

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I think that Sam Houston State should be upgraded to Cannon Fodder status.  Though an FCS school they are the two-time and recent national FCS runners-up.

Of course A&M would like to have kept Texas on its schedule, but Texas would rather face the Aggies of New Mexico State instead (seriously, NMSU is one of Texas' opponents this year) and has no interest in renewing the rivalry.  And Baylor is just as bad or even worse, never mind that A&M is one of the few opponents that would actually be OK with playing a game in Waco.

1 year, 3 months ago on UM, MSU: Masters Of Cupcakery… UGA, VU: SEC’s Toughest Schedulers

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He actually wrote Manic Monday under the pseudonym "Christopher".  It was Sheena Easton's "Sugar Walls" where Prince used the Alexander Nevermind pseudonym.

1 year, 5 months ago on Thought Of The Day – 4/8/13

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If "O Brother Where Art Thou?" is a staple, does that make you A Man of Constant Sorrow?

1 year, 7 months ago on Dismissed Bama Footballer Allowed To Leave State To Attend School In Mississippi

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It's probably good to keep Kevin Steele far away from the field.  Just ask Baylor how he could snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

 

1 year, 7 months ago on Report: Bama Hires Another Ex-Head Coach In Cristobal

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The best way to explain it is this quote I found from a poster on LandThieves (one of the OU fan sites):

 

"Iron sharpens iron.  Butter sharpens nothing."

1 year, 7 months ago on Recruiting Guru: SEC Isn't Ultimate Selling Card, But It's A Good One

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The SEC may schedule with the Big 12 only because there aren't any schools in the Big 12 it wants or would come.

 

Back in 1990 it had an interest in Texas.  But whatever interest Texas had in the SEC in 1990 (or in 1996 when the SWC finally folded) by 2010 was long gone.  They think of the SEC as a bunch of glorified commuter schools with football programs having the integrity of used car lots.  Plus they would prefer to be affiliated with fellow uber-liberals out west.  Though the SEC would most likely make an exception to "doubling down" in a state if Texas were interested, they won't have to deal with that issue.

 

And since the SEC won't be doubling down, Texas Tech, TCU, and Baylor won't be invited.  Not that the SEC, had it not had a member school in Texas, would be so desparate to take them.

 

Oklahoma would be invited but they're wanting to hang with Texas plus they demand a package deal with Oklahoma State.  So no chance there.

 

Kansas might be interesting (their basketball franchise would greatly improve the SEC in that regard) but its rumored that they also demand a package deal with Kansas State.  Also would Kansas bring any significant markets not already covered by Mizzou?

 

Iowa State brings no major markets; the only thing they offer is the AAU membership but that's probably not enough.

 

West Virginia tried to get in but were rejected and I doubt anyone in the SEC has changed their mind.  They could probably get their markets with Pitt plus pick up an AAU member in the process.

 

And in any event the PAC would probably grab some schools from there first.

1 year, 8 months ago on How An SEC-Big XII Scheduling Alliance Could Doom The ACC

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 @BonzaiB

 If for some reason the SEC stays at 14 members for the foreseeable future I would like to see A&M and Florida be permanent rivals.  It only makes sense for the SEC's two largest members (and two of the 10 largest in the whole country) pair off.

 

Our (I say this as a fan) extension centers would probably put us ahead (we have so many across the state), but organizationally they are separate entities under the A&M System.  We're in the process of putting our medical campus under the main university, and we just got approved to purchase and take over a private law school in DFW.

1 year, 8 months ago on SEC Pushing Its Academic Oomph

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 @Roggespierre  I'm glad you think A&M would have been outstanding as a B1G member and know that it is a world-class institution in its own right.

 

Of course we both know that it was never considering going there, invite or not, just like it had no interest in the PAC (and definitely wasn't going to go there just because Texas made some deal to take everyone).  It was either stay in the Big 12 or jump to the SEC, and probably since 1990 the SEC is where it has always wanted to be.

1 year, 8 months ago on SEC Pushing Its Academic Oomph

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Dr. Loftin (A&M) mentioned that, when attending meetings with other university heads at Association of American Universities meetings, the participants were seated in alphabetical order, and next to him was Dr. Machen (Florida).  So not surprising they have worked together.  (Recently A&M was the lead of a consortium that won a large federal grant for vaccine production.  One of the members of the consortium?  Florida.)

 

I have no doubt that whatever conference A&M wanted to join, its academic credentials alone would have gotten it in (including the highly selective Big Ten, you ask?  A&M is an AAU member and #18 overall in terms of total research dollars.  The only delay would be getting the CIC to simultaneously announce its invite as well.)

 

A&M was considered as a potential SEC member (along with arch rival Texas) as far back as 1990 (according to a recent article from Saturday Down South).  We may tease them (t.u.) but they're no slouch in academia (AAU and #20 overall research dollars).  Though if anyone was the big mover and shaker back in 2010 to get A&M to consider (once again) the SEC, it may have been Gene Stallings (yes, the former A&M and Alabama coach, at that time he was an A&M System Regent).

1 year, 8 months ago on SEC Pushing Its Academic Oomph

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The PAC-12 has few desirable options for expansion within its borders (and you could probably say none as I can't see the university presidents/chancellors having too much interest in Boise State, UNLV, Nevada, or New Mexico).  But just across the "border" are three HIGHLY desirable candidates--Texas (AAU member and the #1 revenue generating athletic department), Oklahoma (football power with a decent-sized national following, and it's just down the road from where the NCAA Women's College World Series is held--remember the PAC-12 is a softball power), and Kansas (AAU member and a dominant basketball power).

 

If the PAC-12 and the Big 12 form an alliance it would be like the hen house hiring the fox for "security services".

1 year, 8 months ago on Survivor, NCAA Style: Big 12 Talks Alliances, “Friends With Benefits”

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Arkansas was quite willing to send Petrino packing, though his mess involved getting his mistress on the payroll ahead of over 100 other applicants (if any of them were more qualified AND a member of a protected group--minority and/or over age 40--now you're dealing with the Feds who make the NCAA look like gentle folks).

 

And let's not forget how quickly Penn State dumped Paterno when that news finally came out--they wouldn't even let him bow out at the end of the season.  And that was MUCH worse than recruiting stuff.

 

Mizzou can't, and won't, keep Haith around.  No program can afford to put itself that deep in a hole--the big money boosters will keep their wallets closed tight.

1 year, 8 months ago on An NCAA Show-Cause Penalty Would Likely Lead To Haith’s Ouster At Mizzou

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 @WolfDawgIn that or any ACC team to the SEC scenario only one team would have to move to the SEC West and Mizzou would be the clear choice.

 

1 year, 8 months ago on It's a B1G/SEC Race to Expand

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The grant of rights that the Big 12 supposedly has in place.  Which is very similar to a man asking his wife for a divorce so he can marry his mistress; the wife says fine but I get your paycheck for the next x number of years until the kids turn 18.

1 year, 8 months ago on Big XII Commish: "We Could Be Proactive"

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The PAC hosted their 2012 game at Stanford's home stadium and barely got over 31K to attend.

 

The SEC, meanwhile, has hosted their game at a neutral site since Year 1 (and since Year 3 has hosted it in Atlanta); it hasn't hurt them one bit.

 

The real reason that no one sees those games is because the games are garbage.  How excited can you be about a game where the final score may resemble a basketball game (had USC and Oregon been the teams, their first game was 62-51)?

1 year, 8 months ago on Texas A.D. On Expansion: “We’re Very Happy with 10″

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Considering Texas lost to both new members this season they can ill afford any more additions!

 

In all seriousness, maybe the Big 12 has a point about not having a conference championship game.  Although it works very well (and very profitably) for the SEC, it didn't do all that well for the Big 10 (where Nebraska, a program with very loyal fans, returned around 7,000 tickets) or the PAC-12 (where more fans attended Oregon State's rescheduled beatdown over rent-a-win Nicholls State than the PAC-12 CCG) or especially the ACC (where tickets were available so cheap on StubHub that you paid more for processing fees than the ticket itself).  At least the Big 12 won't have to depend on some local government taxpayer subsidy to break even on a CCG.

1 year, 8 months ago on Texas A.D. On Expansion: “We’re Very Happy with 10″

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 @AndrewMartin

 Probably because Slive knows what's coming (or close to it) and simply has to negotiate what the terms are when the SEC expands beyond 14 members.  Then wait until the Maryland situation sets the final exit fee, let Delaney grab the schools which wouldn't come to the SEC under any circumstances (UVA, GT, UNC, Duke), welcome VT and NCST with open arms, then sit back (bourbon and cigar in hand) and watch the cash roll in.

1 year, 8 months ago on Big Ten Commissioner Talks Conference Expansion

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In other words we could be looking at a repeat of last year.  LSU couldn't throw the ball deep and Alabama loaded up 8-9 in the box the whole game.

1 year, 8 months ago on Alabama - Notre Dame: The Keys For The Irish

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 @AllTideUp  @Transic  @AndrewMartin

 Another factor that came into play involves, of all things, the seating arrangement at AAU meetings.

 

It turns out that when the AAU member presidents/chancellors all get together, they sit in alphabetical order.  During the relevant time period of A&M's rumored move to the SEC, the seating arrangement had Dr. Loftin (A&M's President) seated next to Dr. Machen (Florida's President).  The two have become good friends--Dr. Machen attended the official press conference in College Station announcing the SEC's official acceptance of A&M into the SEC.  (And when A&M won that huge vaccine research contract, the University of Florida is listed as a partner in the consortium of businesses involved.)

 

Stallings' involvement was more along the lines of convincing A&M bigwigs that the move made sense (though I don't deny he pulled out his old SEC Rolodex and made a few calls to some old Southern friends).

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 3)

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 @Transic  @AndrewMartin

 UT President Bill Powers is a Cal (Berkeley) graduate so he had a lot of interest in taking the school (which is considered very liberal, as is the City of Austin in general) out west to join their fellow arts and croissants crowd.  (Austin has become a miniature Silicon Valley with many high-tech businesses either moving or expanding there).

 

The original PAC-16 plan, had it went through, would have cut off the SEC from realistic expansion into Texas (no way they take Baylor).

 

But what few people remember or even know, is that in 2010 one of the members of the A&M System Board of Regents (which oversees A&M) was Gene Stallings--yes, the former Alabama head coach.  There is a lot of belief spread around message boards that Stallings was the main force behind A&M considering an SEC move over a PAC move.  (Stallings term as a Regent expired in Feb 2011, before the decision to move was made.)  It also happened that the Texas Legislature was not in session, as it meets only in the early part of odd numbered years, and had already adjourned (unlike most states, it can't call itself into special session--only the Governor can do that and then only he sets the agenda, there is no way he places on the agenda anything to keep A&M from moving to the SEC).

 

I think OU was turned down as it insisted on bringing Oklahoma State with them.  If it were Texas and OU together and only those two, they would get in to the PAC.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 3)

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 @JRsec  @JansonRoberts

 If the PAC wanted to grow, I don't think the Big 12 GOR would really stop anything, especially if 6 of the 10 schools decided to disband the conference thus making the GOR meaningless as there would be no entity to which to grant said rights.

 

So the PAC could then take the Big 12's three AAU members (Texas, Kansas, Iowa State) and Oklahoma, agreeing with the SEC to have them take in Oklahoma State and Kansas State.  This allows both conferences to expand (and to areas where the Big Ten appears to have no interest).  Texas Tech would still be around if the PAC wanted to get to 18 (or if politically they had to take them to get Texas).  West Virginia could try again for the SEC (or if the ACC remained stable, go there and reunite with old rival Pitt).  Baylor and TCU would get hosed but the occasional upset =/= long-term football success; they're best suited for a Mountain West or Sun Belt level of competition.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 3)

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 @StatesmanMike Slive can play offense and defense while sitting on the sidelines, all at once.  He is The Most Interesting Man in the World.

 

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 3)

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 @AndrewMartin  @TransicAndrew, I agree.  In fact had A&M wanted to pursue the Big Ten I think, "contiguous state rule" notwithstanding, they would have been admitted, either with or without Texas as a partner, into both the conference and the CIC.

 

Using the numbers from Big Bang 1, A&M is #18 in terms of overall research expenditures (two spots ahead of Texas).  And that's BEFORE this year's announcement of a $250M contract with DHHS for vaccine research.  A&M has a goal of getting to the $1B annual research level and they are well on their way.

 

A&M has its quirky traditions and its main athletic teams may not always be that good on the field, but it's a powerhouse in the classroom and the lab.  NO conference would turn that away.

 

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 3)

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 @John at MrSECI know the Big Ten has no interest in VT or NC State; neither are AAU members which essentially DQ's them.

 

I just don't see what Duke brings to the table in the long run and why UNC wants to tie itself to them.

 

People forget that until Coach K showed up, Duke was not that good in basketball.  Except for a stretch between 1963-1966 where they made three Final Fours, they only had ONE other Final Four appearance (1978) and had NEVER won a national title (by the time Duke got its first title, NC State already had two).  They didn't even make the postseason until 1955 (by then Kentucky already had four titles).  When Coach K finally retires, any conference that picks up Duke most likely end up with an albatross.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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 @Sooner_Stampede

 It wasn't simply the LHN that was the problem for A&M.  It was that Texas (who already controls the University Interscholastic League, which governs high school sports in the state) also wanted to broadcast high school games (and only those featuring its recruits, such as Aledo games with Johnathan Gray).

 

"Commit to Texas, and we'll show your games across the country.  Commit someplace else (A&M, OU), and no dice."

 

I know Colorado wanted out west and Mizzou wanted in the Big Ten; I didn't list them for that reason.  But Nebraska was heading to the Big Ten BEFORE the planned Big 12 South relocation to the PAC.

 

I'm not dissing Oklahoma; though I'm from Texas I root for you over the Horns any day.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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 @RonnyMexico For the Big Ten that is plausible.  But who would be #18 if the SEC grabbed all three?   Pitt (another AAU member)?  Cincy?  Try to talk Georgia into not opposing Georgia Tech's return to the conference (say, in exchange for sponsoring Georgia's admission into the AAU?)

 

Or is a UVA/UNC/Duke grouping only logical for the Big Ten with Georgia Tech the fallback if Notre Dame says no?

 

Then does the SEC have to get to 18?  Or would they hold at 16 (taking VT and NC State), then wait to see if the Big 12 crumbles?

 

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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That's the one thing about these scenarios about which I'm not convinced--the relative stability of the Big 12.

 

As the first article pointed out, no other conference has such a huge gap between its top earner (Texas) and its bottom one (Iowa State).  And in football, though from time to time a K-State or an Oklahoma State can rise up, over the long haul the powers are Texas and Oklahoma, followed by everyone else.  Kansas brings its historic basketball franchise but its football is even worse than Duke.

 

And no conference is more dysfunctional.  How many conferences can claim that a member institution left the conference because of the actions of another member?  It's well known that A&M left because of Texas and its actions surrounding the Longhorn Network, but it's quite rumored that Nebraska also left because of Texas calling the shots (eliminating partial qualifiers, moving the conference HQ to DFW).

 

I'm just not certain that even if the ACC folded first and the Big 12 picked up Florida State, Clemson, etc., that ultimately the PAC-12 wouldn't try again to pick up Texas and OU (and probably Kansas) and that whole mess collapses.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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Then is 18 the end number and not 16?

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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I just don't see either Delany or Slive "doubling down" on any state, so any UVA/VT or UNC/Duke deal is probably a non-starter.

 

I still think that UVA and UNC will move together and Big Ten is the likely landing spot.  VT and NC State would be solid pickups for the SEC; they get you some cable eyeballs in the states you want in, and their research #'s you quoted are both top 50 and puts them ahead of everyone in the SEC other than A&M (#18), Florida (#21), and Vandy (#37) (and for NC State, just one spot below #43 Kentucky).

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 2)

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 @torris187  @Quidam65 The original argument was that someone should grab USF simply because it was in a major market, notwithstanding that its program is weak.

 

My argument was that if simply having a school in a large market is the only goal, the Miami-Fort Lauderdale market is much bigger (top 10 I believe) so on that basis FIU and FAU are just as credible (and just as weak).

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 1)

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But USF is a weak football program in a weak conference and it's other sports don't do much either.  On that basis Florida Atlantic or Florida International would be better pickups.

 

Cincinnati has been competitive in that same weak conference and it's b-ball program brings additional value too.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 1)

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Probably the same as in 2010 when all this started--if someone is interested we'll take a look to see if they can provide value to the SEC, then go from there.  If not, we'll stand pat and rake in the dough from providing the best product out there.

 

The Big Ten and (then) PAC-10 wanted to expand in 2010 so each could get to the 12 teams needed to host a conference championship game.  The SEC didn't need to expand as it already had 12 teams (none of which were looking to leave except in the deluded fantasies of fan site message boards) and the most profitable CCG.

 

Of course, it was a no-brainer when Texas A&M--a flagship university in the country's second most populous state, with alumni concentrated in two major media markets not already covered significantly by existing teams (DFW and Houston), and an AAU member to boot--expressed interest in joining; short of collective insanity by the SEC leadership there was no way they would not be accepted.

1 year, 9 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 1)

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