There have been whispers that the Big 12 could be the next major conference to fall by the wayside but, for the most part, that has not developed into a full-blown national story. However, ESPN’s Paul Finebaum might be changing that, as he offered some fairly drastic opinions on a recent interview with The Opening Drive on 94.5 FM WJOX. Within that discussion, Finebaum said the following about the Big 12:
“I think the Big 12 is in trouble and I think this is something we’ve been able to detect for some time. I don’t think the Big 12 as we know it will still be in existence in five years. There are schools in the Big 12 that have looked to get out, and I think, continue to look to get out. They can deny it all they want but they don’t have the what the SEC, Big Ten, Pac-12 and what the ACC are going to have, and that’s their own network — which is critical in this world of exploding television reality. I don’t know how you can survive like that.”
Beyond the strong take that the “Big 12 is in trouble,” Finebaum then turned his attention to one school in particular, saying that Oklahoma is “desperate” to escape the league.
“I can think of one school in the Big 12 that would like out pretty desperately, and if that happened, would it have a domino effect? That school is the University of Oklahoma.”
This seems like a perfect Finebaum over-dramatization but, in the same breath, Oklahoma wanting to leave would be huge news and could spell the death of the conference if executed. The next wave of realignment isn’t here just yet but, when it arrives, keep an eye on the Sooners.