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Part of making it happen is saying it out loud and then taking action. It sets events in motion and alerts those around you. Texas and Oklahoma have done it.
How does Texas play SEC football in 2022 without paying penalties while still getting its full share of the money from Tier 1 and Tier 2 SEC contracts?
First, let’s establish a common set of facts:
1. A simple majority of the members of the Big 12 leaving should effectively dissolve the Big 12. That’s 6 of the 10 members. Lawyers can argue that, but it doesn’t matter.
2. The Big 12 Grant of Rights expires in 2025. Texas and Oklahoma do not renew. But their goal is to play SEC ball well before 2025.
3. Texas and OU are tough. An action of 1.5 is not going to appease them. Four more to go.
Now consider: Texas announced its plan to the Big 12. It’s announced publicly. The Longhorns are leaving and will count on the league collapse to free them well before 2025.
We have a fascinating game theory unfolding …
If the rest of the Big 12 acted in concert as emotionless, altruistic, fully cooperative, and rational actors, they could hold Texas and Oklahoma hostage for another four years, extract as much contract money as they could. are unable to create themselves, and / or force a lucrative first buyout. They might even be able to pull off the awesome middle of extracting a massive buyout, all the while landing on their favorite destinations (well, half of them) and laughing all the way to the bank. They just have to hold on. Stay on the line. Extract two pounds of flesh (or $ 75 million) from Oklahoma and Texas for the price of exit.
The if in that sentence does a lot of work, doesn’t it?
The most loyal members of the Big 12 are the ones with the fewest options. Loyalty is a by-product of their unattractiveness.
Once a tangle begins, the remaining cast don’t pull themselves together, they fall apart. Because the other Big 12 members have varying options individually. The perception, real or not, is that the music has started and there aren’t enough chairs. There’s a barcalounge or two, a one-legged stool, a dirty outbuilding (in July), and a few folding metal chairs. They could refuse to listen to the music, their fans’ screams and their own feelings of panic and simply take a unified bargaining position that would put Texas and Oklahoma in an extremely difficult position.
They probably won’t.
Because selfish individual actors cannot act in perfect concert and trust. There is no leader. There is no plan. More important again, some of these remaining players have much better potential options than others. It is a definitional imbalance and an inherently unstable platform for cooperation. The departure from Texas and Oklahoma highlights the natural differences. They’ve created a frame of the world and the rest of the league will see the world through that frame. By standards that matter, the University of Kansas – despite indescribably awful football – is a more desirable partner than TCU and Baylor. Why would Kansas sublimate its best ambitions for them in the hope that they can hit a payoff and count on the Big Ten to take them at some future date?
If they all fit together perfectly, they minimize the risk. But their personal interest and their varied options require a different framing.
Each school will assess its own position and act in its individual best interest, although a cooperative interest may prove more beneficial.
Kansas is going into the Big 10 unless this league dithers foolishly and allows the Pac 12 or the ACC to melt. Now we have three schools that have come out. Half-way.
The state of Iowa will make its debut in the Big 10. Largely on the idea that they are geographically present, accredited by the AAU, have living alumni, and are a decent number balancing option. with Kansas. Matt Campbell would never leave for a job coaching the Michigan Wolverines, Notre Dame Fighting Irish or the Chicago Bears! We can count on cyclonic football! Honest.
Oklahoma State and Texas Tech will say it’s closing time and they’re a solid 6. Let’s give it to them with favorable lighting and five shots of tequila in our system. Their best hope is the Pac 12. The Pac 12 is snobbish, flabby and caught sniffing his own farts, but they might just be motivated. do something and add these two schools, taking the activity for the strategy. OSU cares deeply about the sport (so Oregon, USC, Utah and Washington should fight to outnumber Cal’s contingent) and the addition of Tech allows Texas rookies to be on television in Texas so their families can see them. This is not an insignificant lure. Pac 12 pro-sports schools should fight for more schools that also care about sport to be included.
West Virginia will pounce on ACC and the Big 10. In that order. They have a chance at ACC, but are not AAU (Big 10) accredited. So go ACC. White water rafting! John Denver! Colorful inhabitants! Texas would certainly prefer them to go to ACC. Why? Because they don’t want them to oust the state of Iowa.
Baylor. Ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha! Sorry… I’ll manage… ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha!
TCU is in trouble. Can they somehow persuade the Pac 12 that they deliver DFW? Figures and facts don’t back it up, but I’m happy to help tell this lie. Maybe they team up with Texas Tech and the two schools together can breach DFW. And help deliver Texan rookies to the rest of Pac 12.
Kansas State. Strange man. Not the AAU. Not a particularly attractive option despite strong fans. Geographical poor correspondence with the remaining suitors. Needs a bold Big 10 reinvention that won’t happen.
Texas fans must draw in Kansas, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, West Virginia, and Iowa State to find desirable soft landings at a major conference. In fact, Texas only needs four of the five for a successful landing. Any miracle Texas gets from Baylor, TCU, or the State of Kansas is just a bonus and guarantees a seamless exit and a SEC ball in 2022.