Utah and Arizona State Show Strong Interest in Big 12 Following Departure of Oregon and Washington from Pac-12
Now that Washington and Oregon are expected to switch from the Pac-12 to the Big Ten, Utah, and Arizona State are reportedly considering joining the Big 12.
By announcing that they would be switching from the Pac-12 to the Big Ten on Friday morning, Washington and Oregon generated a lot of media attention. Utah and Arizona State are now being mentioned in talks of a probable exit for the Big 12, according to Brett McMurphy of Action Network. Two more schools are now expected to quit the conference.
“Big 12 now ‘exploring its options’ following news of Oregon & Washington leaving for Big Ten,” reads a statement from Arizona State and Utah.
It is hardly shocking to learn that Washington and Oregon are reportedly leaving the Pac-12, and Utah and Arizona State are also considering switching to the Big 12. If they decide to leave their present conference, they will also attend Colorado’s new league.
The future of the league remains utterly uncertain amid the Pac-12’s demise. Losing prestigious universities like UCLA, USC, Washington, and Oregon removes the biggest names from the league and a Colorado team that has been making headlines ever before Deion Sanders arrived. Either way, the Pac-12 must move quickly if they hope to save the league.
All four programs may breathe relief as UCLA, USC, Washington, and Oregon join the Big Ten. Now that all four of them can compete on the West Coast despite joining the Big Ten, the travel demands of switching leagues will be less onerous.
Envisioning a Dynamic Pac-12-ACC Merger in the Wake of Oregon and Washington’s Departures
The Pac-12 may federate with the ACC or Mountain West in light of Oregon and Washington’s departure from the conference for the Big 10. The Pac-12’s future looks bleak following Oregon and Washington’s departure for the Big 10. Only Washington State, Oregon State, Cal, and Stanford remain in the Pac-12 when Utah, Arizona, and Arizona State go to the Big 12. Combining with the ACC is one option for the Pac-12.
After the current Pac-12 media rights contract expires next summer, there are three possible possibilities. The Pac-12 might collapse, try to snare at least five institutions from rival leagues, or combine with another conference.
First off, a transfer to the ACC over the Mountain West would be highly preferred by the remaining four Pac-12 institutions. The Mountain West schools are paid much less under the Mountain West Conference’s deal, which expires in 2026 than the ACC member schools do under the league’s current media rights agreement, which continues until 2036.
The ACC’s contract is considered unfair even though it is significantly better than the Mountain West’s. Its duration makes it rigid in the dynamic world of collegiate sports, and by 2036, it’s likely to be undervaluing the ACC as a whole.
The Big 10 and SEC overshadow the ACC, the leading cause for concern. They keep adding well-known programs that are also very competitive in college football. The next season, two of the nation’s top football programs, Oklahoma and Texas, would join the SEC. Of course, USC and UCLA are joining Oregon and Washington in the Big 10.
Therefore, from a financial standpoint, the ACC may gain from such a combination, especially if Stanford football completes a successful reconstruction soon. The West Coast market would be a wonderful addition to the ACC’s income stream because Stanford and Cal are reasonably large programs and brands.
Latest Pac-12, Big Ten Moves Fueled by USC and UCLA
The Big Ten and Big 12 are stealing teams from the Pac-12, the top league on the West Coast, and UCLA and USC are to blame.
The Pac-12 is in disarray as teams decide to exit the conference. The first domino that launched a crazy sequence of events was the decision by UCLA and USC to depart for the Big Ten starting in the 2024–25 academic year. Colorado was the next club to quit, a significant setback for the Pac-12 as Deion Sanders joined the football team and instantly garnered much national attention.
The blows to the conference don’t end with Colorado switching from the Pac-12 to the Big 12 in 2024. The Big Ten will now have UCLA and USC in addition to UCLA and Oregon, Washington and Oregon confirmed on Friday morning, thus eliminating the top four marquee schools from the Pac-12. There are speculations that Utah, Arizona State, and Arizona are considering joining the Big 12, which would effectively kill the Pac-12. So who is to blame for the Pac-12’s demise after such a traumatic few months for the conference? All evidence, then, points to UCLA and USC.
UCLA and USC: Chasing the Financial Incentives
After a few years of mediocrity away from the national limelight, UCLA sports has recently seen a revival. Since UCLA was one of the few Jordan brand colleges in the country and was located in West LA’s sunny streets, its brand recognition increased significantly. Although they were already routinely among the best programs in the country in sports like baseball, softball, volleyball, and soccer, the basketball and football teams have also made significant improvements in recent years. UCLA rose to the top of the list of programs to consider for top athletes in any sport, and their conference was the only factor detracting from their improved reputation. At this point, the decision to join the Big Ten was obvious.
Adding a team like UCLA to the Big Ten makes perfect sense for both parties since it is perhaps the most profitable league in collegiate athletics.. UCLA will benefit greatly from the greater national exposure and better TV rights deal that the Big Ten has, while their new conference will gladly accept one of the bigger university names in the country. Being recruited as a Big Ten school and not a Pac-12 school certainly would help UCLA’s football program flourish, while the basketball program should continue to be among the best in the country. In terms of USC, the same reasoning applies to their move to the Big Ten.