It seems that the merger between the Big 12 South (minus Baylor and plus Colorado) with the Pac-10 has become so likely that select members of the Texas legislature are now getting involved, according to new information from Orangebloods.com.
Unfortunately, they are fighting for the same thing that previously kept Texas out of the Pac-10 a couple of decades back; they want the Baylor Bears to replace the Colorado Buffaloes on the Pac-10 invite list.
Allow me to emphatically state what I think most current fans of Pac-10 schools are thinking:
Absolutely not, and you don't have the necessary leverage to make it happen.
I grew up in Big 8/Big 12 country, so I am extremely familiar with the football programs over there. Frankly, if my beloved Pac-10 is going to form the nation's first superconference, I don't want a dead weight program coming as part of the package.
Baylor football should have been kicked out of the Big 12 South years ago and replaced by TCU or any other respectable program within the vicinity. There is no real rivalry between Baylor and any other team in the Big 12 South because Baylor doesn't have a program that anyone wants a rivalry with.
I'd rather bring Rice over, because at least that would bolster Pac-10 academics.
In the coming days, there will likely be a firestorm in Texas that is created by a small group of Baylor alumni who feel their school has more clout and reputation than the University of Colorado.
As an objective observer I am simply going to put my foot down and say it doesn't. End of story.
And the Pac-10 is trying to elevate the level of our competition through these invites, we don't want stragglers when we don't have to take them.
Ultimately, I expect the squabbling of these few, congressional hot shots to die off when they realize the clout simply isn't there for them to make this happen.
The Big 12 is the conference that is falling apart here, not the Pac-10.
Fortunately for the more attractive football schools throughout the conference, the Pac-10 is generously offering an out that will increase profits massively for all involved parties and allow the schools to maintain their most important traditional rivalries.
Texas area football fans (and I mean fans of the three presumed to be invited Texas schools, as well as Oklahoma and Oklahoma State) need to recognize that they aren't going to get that opportunity anywhere else, so the Pac-10 holds most of the bargaining cards on this issue.
I sincerely doubt that many Texans would mourn the absence of Baylor from their conference schedule. Most people probably view it as a blow-off game now anyway.
The University of Colorado brings substantial name recognition and a far more exciting football history that most Pac-10 fans can identify with.
If it did come about that an invite was turned down, or the expansion was going to be broader, then Baylor might be worthy of inclusion.
But if the Texas legislature wants Baylor to be involved in the merger, they will certainly have a lot of convincing to do for fans in the Pac-10.
It is, after all, our conference.