As the Big 12 expansion talks continue to grow louder, conferences across the country are doing their part to brace for any potential departures for teams that may be looking to change their standing within the Power 5.
The conference most likely to be hit with departures is the American Athletic Conference.
The AAC boasts teams like Houston, UConn, Memphis, Cincinnati, ECU and Temple, all schools with promising football programs that have been linked to the Big 12 expansion talks.
So because there is obvious chatter about an AAC member getting poached, Commissioner Mike Aresco wasted no time addressing the issue at the conference’s annual meeting.
”I cannot stand here this morning and ignore the recent Big 12 news regarding realignment,” Aresco said, via the Score. ”Although I do want to address it at the outset, I’m not going to dwell on it.
”I think we’ve set a tone that we are going to approach this in a workman like fashion. We’re not going to be morose. We’re not going to be acting like woe is me. Just the opposite of that. This just means there is work to be done.”
But what happens if some teams bolt for the Big 12? It would be Aresco’s preference that the AAC finds its way back to 12 members and they have already identified some potential targets.
”All things considered I think we’d like to be back at 12 if we lose some schools because it gives you more (television) inventory,” Aresco said.
”There is only a handful of schools that I think would be attractive to us. What we don’t want to do is risk the progress we’ve made, put it in jeopardy. We don’t want to do anything to dilute our brand in any way. Could we stay at 10? If it makes more sense, absolutely. Especially in the short-term. We can play a championship game at 10.”
It’s only a matter of time until the entire nation learns of the exact Big 12 expansion plans, but it’s clear that any conference that could potentially be impacted is already doing its due diligence and looking at how to immediately improve life after those possible departures.
For now, however, all we can do is get our popcorn ready.