Big 12 to Talk to 17 Schools About Possible Expansion

The Big 12 Conference┬áhas announced that they have a list of 17 possible schools that could join the conference. The Big 12’s membership currently stands at ten.

Big 12 to Talk to 17 Schools About Possible Expansion

The names that stand out in the 17 schools include Cincinnati, Houston, BYU, Memphis and Temple. ESPN reports Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowsly will talk to each school via video conference.

The goal for the conference is to decide on its expansion plans during its board of directors meeting. That meeting will take place in October. Multiple reports are saying that the most teams that would join the conference is four. The minimum would be two.

Sources also told ESPN that if the conference were to go back to a 12-team conference, they would split into two six-team divisions. In 2015, Oklahoma won the conference due to best overall record in the conference. They also represented the Big 12 in the second annual College Football Playoff semifinal. They fell to ACC Champion Clemson in the Orange Bowl.

The conference actually had 12 teams until 2010 when Nebraska joined the Big Ten. Colorado joined the then PAC 10 in 2011. Colorado’s in-state rival, Colorado State, is now pursuing a chance to join the Big 12.

2010 was also the season in which the conference did away with its championship game. The last Big 12 championship game was played in 2009. Texas beat Nebraska on a last-second field goal to advance to the BCS National Championship game. The game will reappear in 2017. There were talks to play the game again in 2015, but the league decided not to.

Northern Illinois could also be a serious contender to join. It’s likely they would do well in the conference. They appeared in the MAC Championship game the last six seasons. The team even made an appearance in the Orange Bowl in 2013. They fell to Florida State in that game.