clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Chaos War-reigns: Big Ten expansion thread

Let’s hear what you have to say about news of UCLA & USC moving to the Big Ten

NCAA Football: Big Ten Football Championship-Iowa vs Michigan Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I bet you didn’t then he had it in him.

After a shaky first couple of years on the beat, Kevin Warren shocked the sporting world when news leaked about USC & UCLA potentially joining the Big Ten Conference earlier this afternoon.

It’s a seismic shift, which would have the conference hopping the mountain time zone and straight the West Coast in their expansion efforts. As many have postulated on Twitter, perhaps this backroom dealing is what delayed the previously expected May television deal for the conference from ever being announced.

After Wilner’s reports, everyone started spilling the tea, with Nicole Auerbach being particularly funny with her premise:

Geography aside, UCLA & USC tick the boxes as AAU-accredited universities. They have vaunted histories with USC’s football and UCLA’s basketball being historic blue bloods (even if recent results leave something to be desired). They open up pipelines to alumni in the area.

Perhaps most importantly, it has everybody else on the heels as college sports barrel towards super conferences.

This was a point I co-opted 11 months ago from Jon Miller in the aftermath of Texas and Oklahoma bolting for the SEC. It makes even more sense as the Big Ten is in the midst of their television rights negotiations with basically every non-ESPN network. A positively 1900s idea I saw, which still carries weight in today’s media environment, would be the conference owning FOX’s BIG NOON SATURDAY, CBS’ slot vacated by the SEC, and potentially NBC’s primetime slot.

That is a whole lot more enticing when you’ve got a fourth blue-ish blood (OSU, Michigan, Penn State, & USC) instead of trying to peddle Rutgers-Northwestern to the masses.

Jon Wilner, the guy who initially broke the news, has sources who says not to assume the conference is done and I threw out my idea to 20 on Twitter.

(Big Ten 1: OSU, Michigan, Penn State, USC, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Michigan State, Iowa, Northwestern, Nebraska)
(Big Ten 2: Minnesota, Illinois, Rutgers, Maryland, Purdue, Indiana, UNC, Duke, Kansas, UCLA)
(Tell me you won’t watch every Nebraska game cheering for their relegation that first season)

Realistically, we are probably looking at Oregon & Washington (hilariously the only two Pac-12 teams to make the college football playoff) and probably some additional Pac-12 flotsam. As the tweet above references, there are alumni in the Bay Area which might give Stanford (ok!) and Cal (ok.) a pathway into the conference.

Where does it stop? What does it look like? How do you feel?

Discuss below!