The Big 12 will be adding at least two teams in the coming months and the expansion situation could be settled by the start of the 2016 season. There are a number of teams looking to work their way into the conference and it looks like the New Mexico Lobos have thrown their name into the hat.
University president Robert Frank wrote a letter to Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby touting the school’s stature as a “research institution” while also bringing up the fact that the school represents the entire state. It certainly looks he has done his homework on why the Lobos would be a perfect fit for the Big 12.
“Sports reporters, ESPN broadcasters, and all the other outlets are advancing many names for possible Big 12 expansion. None of those universities or colleges can match the athletic and academic prowess of The University of New Mexico (UNM), a school which is not only within the Big 12’s regional footprint, but is a research institution with a diverse student population and a rich cultural history. UNM fits the core values of the conference’s peer institutions, and has a collegiate fan base and media base to match.”
New Mexico does have a certainly value in their name that schools like Cincinnati, Memphis, South Florida and Central Florida simply cannot match. However, the biggest downfall on the part of the Lobos is the fact that their stadium seats less than 40,000 people.
This certainly makes the Lobos a longshot to join the Big 12, so it will be interesting to see what happens with the conference going forward.