UPDATE: Colorado to the Pac-10 is official - announced on Pac-10 official website.
Kyle Ringo of the BOULDER (CO) DAILY CAMERA reports Thursday morning:
It’s a done deal.
The University of Colorado will announce at an 11 a.m. Friday press conference that the school will leave the Big 12 and join the Pac-10.
Multiple sources confirmed the deal to the Camera early Thursday, and league officials are scheduled to be in Boulder on Friday for the announcement.
Matt Hayes of SportingNews.com, Joe Schad of ESPN.com, and Jon Wilner of the SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS also report today that Colorado will be the first Big 12 school to formally accept an invitation from the Pac-10.
That news has the Texas political machinery in high gear.
Ringo of the BOULDER (CO) DAILY CAMERA reported earlier today:
A Big 12 source told the Camera that Texas Gov. Rick Perry has summoned representatives from Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech and Baylor to a meeting today to discuss strategies for keeping the foursome together in the same conference.
Chuck Carlton of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS reported similarly:
A source familiar with the situation said Texas Tech and Baylor have been invited to the group discussion today. That’s an interesting development. Texas Tech has always seen as part of any mass migration to the Pac-10.
But Baylor has always been viewed as being on the outside looking in. And with the Pac-10 expected to announce an invite for Colorado today, how could Baylor fit in? Maybe Baylor’s lobbying efforts in the Texas Legislature are working.
There might be more. Could those A&M to the SEC rumors be more than rumors, leaving an extra seat open for the Pac-16 express? Or could the four really be trying their best to salvage the conference? No one quite knows yet.
Though the AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN reported Thursday:
Aides to the so-called Big Three in today’s state government — Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Speaker Joe Straus — said they have mostly stayed out of the conference talks.
Perry’s lack of activity is the most surprising to many Capitol insiders. By comparison, two leading politicians in Kansas — Gov. Mark Parkinson and U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback — have asked Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman to try to keep Nebraska in the Big 12, according to the Omaha World Herald.
In a column Tuesday, Kirk Bohls of the Statesman added of Baylor’s prospects:
Speculation that Texas is calling all the shots and will determine whether Baylor is included among the Big 12 contingent that could be invited to the Pac 10 Conference is untrue, one Texas school administrator said.
“They’re the ones (doing the) inviting,” the school official said of the Pac 10 on Tuesday. “The people in power at Baylor are not saying that (it’s up to Texas).”
On A&M’s conference alignment prospects, Bohls wrote late Wednesday:
Make no mistake, Texas is the 600-pound gorilla in the room. If left to its own devices, it could join any conference it wishes today. But it is tethered to Texas A&M and Texas Tech, even though I’m told by people who know that there is a slight chance the state’s two top universities could separate, with Texas headed to the Pac-10 and A&M bent for SEC country. Not likely, but possible.
What we have now are Texas politicians and media members doing their best to say and do the right thing when it comes to Baylor. But is the school’s exclusion from Texas exodus to the Pac-10 a dealbreaker for Texas, A&M and Tech?
Absolutely not. The move to the Pac-10 is all about television dollars from Fox and last I checked Denver is a slight upgrade on Waco.
Think Art Briles wishes he hadn’t backed out of the Tech job right about now?