Moreover, in announcing their intentions to leave the "Big 12" by next summer, they've also ceded custody of the children to Texas. In their haste to get as far away from the Longhorns as possible, A&M hasn't had time to establish a new permanent residence, though we know they've been longing to hang their hats in Tennessee for a while now.
The Aggies, of course, are doing the smart thing here. Summoning the inner strength to finally leave that bastard was a huge step forward, and after a big break-up like that you don't want to just jump right into a new relationship. Maintain your independence and take care of YOU, girlfriend! Yes, the SEC is rich and they totally want to fuck you. But before you even talk to those sleazy playa's, you better demand a pre-nup and an STD test. And sure, it was really sweet when the Pac 10 did this, but you know they played that exact same song for all your sisters. Besides, if Mr. Sensitive loves you so much, why is he banging Utah right now?
No, Texas A&M, it's a good thing that you're waiting a year before getting hitched again. Not just because UT deserves it, and not just because it's the best thing for aTm. But also because the inevitable "How Aggie Got Her Groove Back" rom-com will be about 1% as entertaining as the violent and incestuous psychodrama that is (and will continue to be) the ongoing meltdown of the Big
8 12 11 10 9 Smoldering Crater in the middle of the country.
When we think about the dysfunctional family that
is was the Big 12, it's clear at least in hindsight that the question wasn't if the conference would disintegrate, but when. We all remember Uncle Colorado making the first move, running off to the west coast to live in a hippie commune and smoke weed every day. And who could blame him for not wanting to spend one more fucking Thanksgiving dinner with these lunatics? Especially with the annoying questions they keep asking. When are you going to settle down and start your own family? What exactly have you been doing with yourself the last ten years? Why does your jean jacket smell like Burge Hall on a Sunday morning?
While the departure of the Buffaloes was the first hilarious burst of gamma rays from the radioactive Big 12, Colorado was not the source of their nuclear instability.
No, the beginning of the end was when Grandpa and Grandma stopped sleeping in the same bedroom. As was customary for couples of their generation, Nebraska and Oklahoma decided to remain officially married "for the sake of the family," but everyone knew it was a charade. Grandma immediately invited her egocentric long-term boyfriend to move in with his (almost) infinitely patient wife and their two idiot children. (Turns out they've been meeting every year in some sleazy Dallas motel all along.) Grandma and Grandpa still visited each other every couple of years or so, but it was always Awkward City. Grandpa started spending Thanksgivings with Uncle Colorado, which did wonders for his glaucoma, but it could never replace the annual feast that was the Cornhuskers versus the Sooners.
In an interview with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, while doing his best to downplay the drama, Grandpa Nebraska basically acknowledged the truth of this:
"When the Big 12 was formed and we lost that annual game with Oklahoma, it did put things in a little different complexion. It wasn't why we left, but it was a factor that was sort of in the background," Osborne said of the annual Oklahoma-Nebraska showdown, which was played for 70 consecutive seasons until 1998. "Had we still had that annual game, we might have made a little different choice.
As we all know, while Colorado was Skyping their new BFFs out west, Nebraska picked up the land line, turned the rotary dial, and called the ritziest retirement community in the nation. What happened next was, of course, the biggest college football story of 2010, and an EPIC WIN for all involved. Grandpa's new home is crawling with rich old ladies who Want. Him. Now. The food and medical care are second to none. And finally he's surrounded by people who actually know how to fucking play bridge.
In the end, as divergent as the paths of Colorado, Nebraska, and Texas A&M are likely to be, it's hard not to be happy for all of them and the fresh starts they get to make. The fun part will be predicting and watching the crazy misadventures that await the rest of this rapidly disintegrating family.
- Now that Oklahoma and Texas are officially going steady -- and no longer cheating on their "real" rivals -- will boredom set in? Might they end up going their separate ways, or is this True Love Meant to Be? Perhaps more to the point, is Texas capable of forming any sort of lasting relationship?
- Will Texas Tech and Baylor ever move out of Dad's basement? Will Texas kick them out, sell the house, and buy a new mansion with all that TV revenue?
- Oklahoma and Oklahoma State: same question as above, more or less.
- Will Kansas find a new family that is much more accepting of their alternative lifestyle? (Something involving large orange balls and a lot of "banging down low.")
- Which orphanages will have to take in red-headed step-children Kansas State and Iowa State after Texas abandons them in a remote rest area somewhere along the I-35? MWC? MAC? CUSA?
- Does anyone give a rat's ass about Mizzou?