Baylor's Bid to Save the Big 12: An Appeal for Texas Football

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Baylor's Bid to Save the Big 12: An Appeal for Texas Football
Jamie Squire/Getty Images
March 9, 2011. Baylor vs. Oklahoma basketball: The Big 12 rivalries go beyond football, but football dollars threaten a lot of college sports traditions.

Baylor, the Big 12 school that shocked TCU last week 50-48 in a thriller, whose talented QB Robert Griffin III bombed away at a usually tight TCU defense, dropped a bigger bomb on college football this week.

Coupled with the news that the SEC has conditionally accepted Texas A&M into its ranks, is the news that the condition is the Big 12 schools must sign off on it.

Baylor University's own website published a plea to the people of Texas and its universities to preserve Texas football culture and the Big 12. The note said:

Texans must stand up and call the leadership of the University of Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech to clear-headed thinking about the state's future. Texas' flagship institutions of higher learning are the guardians of the state's future—their loyalties must first be to Texas and to her citizens. Ask these leaders to take a stand for Texas and to stop this madness that will lead to the dissolution of the Big 12 and the end of an era for Texas.

This passionate plea by one of the smaller Big 12 schools in football is a plea to retain college football traditions and rivalries, over just going for the money and mega-conferences where teams would be split up.

As Oklahoma is also talking of leaving the Big 12, perhaps for the Pac-12 (Pac-10, Pac-16?), it seems this is a last-ditch effort.  Baylor has a lot to loose, as it might fall to the smaller Conference USA or another non-AQ conference and loose revenue.

But something about the plea goes beyond self interest——I think Baylor has a genuine desire to put a dike in the flood rush for TV dollars at the expense of all else it holds sacred in college football.   

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