Thursday, June 10, 2010

This is intense

I think the picture above is what every college football fan in the western half of the United States has looked like the past few days. My brain hurts from the million or so different conference realignment scenarios that have been whirling in and out of my thoughts. I think this might be what it's like to have schizophrenia. DON'T TOUCH ME!!!!!

Now I'm usually pretty optimistic about things, but I hope we didn't jump the gun on rubbing this whole Pac 16 thing in Baylor's face. I hope reading this post doesn't toss you into a downward spiral of paranoia, but Colorado's defection to the Pac 10 today- while likely eliminating Baylor from getting a spot in the Pac 16- also opened up the possibility of this doomsday scenario:

What if UT and A&M can't agree on where they want to go (Pac 10? SEC? Big Ten?) and decide that, for now, they want to remain in the Big 12 and that the conference survives. Colorado has already played their hand so now the Big 12 and Pac 10 both have 11 teams. What if BYU takes Colorado's place in the Big 12 and Utah joins Colorado in joining the Pac 10? TCU would be fuuuuuuuuucked. Even if Nebraska and/or Missouri leave, I don't think there is any desire to add another Texas school to the Big 12...especially on the part of the four Texas schools currently there.

Obviously this whole situation might change before I even finish typing this blog entry, but for now, TCU fans probably want to root for the Big 12 to completely implode and for the rumored Pac 16 to actually take shape so that the Mountain West is firmly in position to poach any/all of the leftovers.

As nerve-racking as this is, it's actually good that I'm distracted by something (work? pfffff) before the TCU-UT Super Regional series gets started tomorrow.

Ohh Craig James

I was just watching some College Football Live, and they had our favorite commentator Craig James on to discuss the impact of the USC ruling. He gave this quote (I swear he actually said this, I had to rewind twice to make sure I heard it right).

"My teams through '79-'82 had nothing to do with the death penalty, but everybody says it was Dickerson and James."

Let the hilarity ensue.

Thoughts on Conference Expansion

Staring: Jim Delany

In general I think TCU is in a pretty great position here’s why-

-TCU’s worst case scenario: The Big 12 stays together and it and/or the Pac 10 raids BYU and Utah

This looks to be a low probability and even if it does happen the MWC can add Boise and a Houston, Fresno, etc and still look competitive. Boise is our safety blanket b/c nobody is going to add them, and we can always pair up w/ them and have a perennial top 10 team to add football legitimacy to any conference we end up in. There’s also the off chance the Big 12 or Pac 10 adds TCU. TCU makes more TV/recruiting sense for the Pac 10, and as discussed here- UT is scared of us (I’m rolling w/ the conspiracy theory Lyle).

-UT and ATM part ways

UT to the Big 10 without Tetch baggage, Aggy to SEC. They’re meeting today and there are rumors that splitting up is on the table…even though they’re never going to split up…even if splitting up would be the best thing Aggy has ever done. For TCU, it’s MWC / Big 12 remnants detailed below.

-Implications of UT deciding that the Big 12 south will merge with the Pac 10

First of all, step back and think about how funny it is the mighty Big 12 is collapsing into the arms of a Pac 10 conference that is far inferior athletically. Big 12 sports across the board are better than the Pac 10, so congrats on merging with a conference that outside of some (cheating) years by USC has had very limited football success (vs the histories of OU and UT).

If this goes thru, MWC would either absorb Big 12 leftovers (KU, KSU, possibly Missouri, etc) or Big 12 leftovers would absorb MWC teams (Utah, TCU, and BYU). In either case TCU is a ‘top dog’- one of the gems that will be in the driver’s seat. Remember too, you can always add Boise. Could the remnants of the Big 12 jst add some teams and still keep their AQ status- that remains to be seen (more later).

- TCU’s best case: I can dream

Pac 16 merger happens and the SEC expands to 16. They add TCU to get a foothold in Texas for TV, recruiting, and TCU’s all-around-fratness. SEC would likely add Miami, Florida St., Clemson, Georgia Tech from the ACC or Va Tech. I guess West Va, UVA, and South Fl are also possibilities, but after Florida objects to the inclusion of Miami and/or Florida State- maybe the SEC turns to Texas and the best option by far is TCU (assuming ATM and UT are off the table). I admit this is a pipedream, but it’s my pipedream. If the SEC expands w/o TCU, that could be a bad thing for us (we’d prob rather they be a 12 team conf vs having 3 16-team conferences). I guess the Big 10 could be an option to add us for the same reasons (DFW, recruiting, etc- also, in their case, good demographic trends compared to their member schools), but I think even they know with our speed we’d win the conference every year.

-Chess vs Checkers

There’s a lot of herd mentality underway to “not be left behind”…for better or for worse. It has all been set in motion by the Big 10 commissioner. This guy is the orchestra conductor for this offseason craziness that has been in the works for a lot longer than jst the last few months (coincidence the Big 10 network is now fully operational??).

So what happens to a broken up ACC, Big East, and/or Big 12? Do they add teams and continue with business as usual? This is going to be a HUUUUGE question b/c what’s happening is about money- either making more with larger TV contracts (stated)…or splitting it with less people (not stated). This could be the end game, so keep an eye out. I get that UT will bring some more money to a Pac 16 TV contract, but does Tetch or OSU?? Even OU- Oklahoma City’s TV market is below Albuquerque’s (granted OU has a good following, esp in Dallas). So maybe your TV contract makes some more money, but a more likely scenario is you make your money by splitting w/ less people. Do the Big 16 and Pac 16 now get 2 AQ’s? SEC, ACC, Big East will oppose that- but let’s assume ACC and Big East fall apart after an SEC raid to increase to 16 teams. Do the 3 mega conferences jst have a 3-way tourney? These guys might have the balls to try it, but at the end of the day I don’t think you can ace out that many schools…not w/o the government getting involved.

-Final thoughts on Tetch and Baylor

I think a lot of TCU fans are dismayed at how Lubbock and Waco (and Stillwater for that matter) are in the mix to get in the Pac 16 and we aren’t. While Baylor being left out of the Pac 16 could be a hilarious karma bitch slap, I’d prefer they get in instead of Colorado so we could add Colorado to our new MWC / Big 12 conference… and their 16th ranked Denver TV market. As for Tetch, congrats on signing up to be the Baylor of the new Pac 16!!! Using politics and your large state school status to ride the coattails of UT to this new conference is probably going to work out great for you!! Your athletic department is on pretty shaky financial ground, and you jst signed up to fly your women’s softball team to play Washington State…have you even googled mapped Pullman Washington??? Even funnier will be to watch Cal Berkley come to Lubbock. Do they know you’re a Tier 3 school (google it, US News and World Report won’t even rank you)- oh man the Pac 10 is one of the snootiest conferences when it comes to academics. I know you’re tired of ATM, UT, and Baylor making jokes about your trade school status- now you’re dealing with Stanford. You’re about to make a lot of money…I’m sure UT is going to start splitting all this new $$ evenly with you even though they haven’t while in the Big 12. You’ve never been better than UT or OU and now to win your conference you’ll have to beat USC. Let me put it in vacation terms- Lubbock doesn’t compete with Austin, much less Southern California….you might never win a conference title…until this thing implodes 5 years from now when people actually do the math at how expensive it will be. So welcome, Baylor Tetch!

Horns to the left, Ags to the right, stuck in the middle with who?

I almost get as much joy in watching the big 12 disintegrate as I did when the former Soviet Union came apart before our eyes. The commies deserve what that get as did the Soviets...

It will be months before we see the final result of the shake-out, but what to me may be the most interesting scenario is the possible split of TAMU & UT. Those two programs are meeting today to try and work out there differences and plan the possible direction of their exit, but it is a very real possibility that the Ags go to the SEC and the Horns to the PAC-whatever the total will be or PAC-##.

So what about the rest of us in the middle of this muckity, muck? Baylor tried to beg and borrow, but forgot that lending is still tight in this economy and no one can afford to drag there baggage along with them today. Colorado takes the invite west and Baylor is now back to reality.

And what about the Tech situation? Suddenly they find out without little warning that Kent Hance maybe doesn't quite have the pull they thought he did. We shall see, but being left out of the UT & A&M discussion is not a good sign and it was really questionable as to how attractive Lubbock appeared to those west coast schools. So will Tech now become a high plains drifter searching for solace with the group from Kansas and Missouri or is that mixing up too many Eastwood flicks into one? If not we could also add the "deserves go nothing to do with it" in here somewhere if you like.

We are facing the possibility of Tech, Baylor, Missouri, Iowa State, Kansas & Kansas State either trying to rebuild a conference that for all practical matters would no longer exist or those programs scrambling to join other conferences.

The "most likely" scenario would be that the remnants of the Big 12 would try and act quickly and save their own hides so restructuring the former Big 12 would not take place due to the time element required. Missouri obviously would love to join the Huskers and the other 11 in the Big Ten, Kansas & Kansas State would head east if possible and Tech? Baylor? And who really wants Iowa State in their conference?

Would TCU dare?

We shall see!

Baylor and the Karma Train

Ohhh when that Karma train comes around, it comes hard and fast (that's what she said). It sure appears as if Baylor is going to be left out of the new PAC-16, and is totally F'ed. I'm not typically one to particularly relish in someone else's misery (who am I kidding, I love doing it), but it is hard to ignore the irony in the situation with our neighbors down in Waco. Around 14 years ago it was Baylor who flexed their political muscle to get that last spot in the Big 12 and sent TCU and others out to wander conferences and struggle for relevancy for the next decade. Now it appears as though that political muscle is not as strong as it once was and will not have the power to get them into the new conference.

I have really not ever had a problem with Baylor. Hey, they used their influence and got the last seat following the demise of the SWC, and good for them. They are a little guy in a big pond, just like us. But after following their message boards and the outright ridiculous statements from their administration, I have now added them to my hate list. This was my favorite "we are not going to be invited to the PAC-10 because Berkley will not be affiliated with a religious school such as Baylor." Bwahahahahahahaha. Seriously? Just admit that Cal and everyone else doesn't want to be affiliated with you because you suck. That's it. You just suck. And you just suck really hard. I mean hell, even Iowa State went to a bowl game this decade. Iowa freakin State! And you cant? Feel free to kill yourself at any time.

Just keep on saying that we play in a mediocre conference and you could go 12-0 every year with our schedule, and to accept an invitation from the MWC is "beneath you", and keep up the delusion that your qb "who is hands down better than Vince Young", is going to teach us a lesson in the fall. So Baylor, enjoy the Sunbelt conference. Who knows, maybe you can get up to 7-5 and get yourself into a bowl game and you can quit whining about you got robbed in that '94 Alamo Bowl. And if you do end up in the MWC then welcome, I will enjoy penciling in a W every season for that Saturday.

You suck.

***Post Update***

I had to look at this three times on because I swear to god I thought I might have accidentally ingested some of those mushrooms that make UFC fighters think their friend is the devil and you must rip out his still beating heart. See Here. The newest thread is titled "If/when Baylor is in a lesser conference, does that devalue our degrees?" HAHAHAHA. I mean who the hell are these people? Are they seriously this insane? I am almost speechless. Last time I checked no one looked down on a Rice grad because their football team would loose to Katy High. Link to Post Here

If you don't already have lunch plans...

I got this in an email from the athletic department last night. Hopefully there will be an even more impromptu effort to welcome them home from winning this thing!

Morning Dump

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Send the Frogs to Austin Thursday

TCU's Maxwell shines after recovery

TCU-Texas super regional reveals issues with college baseball's pairing process

Purke's decision of TCU over MLB has paid off for Frogs
Austin American-Statesman

Green to start Friday? There's Good chance
Austin American-Statesman

Jerome Pena and teammates play Texas for College World Series birth this weekend
Sonoran News

Young Arrieta to dive right in against Yanks

Nebraska may kill Big 12, but life will emerge from ashes

MWC plays the numbers game
Laramie Boomerang

TCU opens action at the 2010 NCAA championships

Stray Nugget:
Source: two year post season ban for USC football