As we’ve come to expect in the world of conference expansion, things aren’t always what they seem. A few days ago, West Virginia was for sure heading to the Big 12.
Then Louisville got into the mix, and some believed that they would be the chosen one for the Big 12 instead of West Virginia.
But perhaps all of that discussion has come to an end, as CBSSports.com’s Brett McMurphy is reporting that the Big 12 has finally made up their minds, and they are officially inviting the Mountaineers to join their conference.
Things would have been so much easier had they just went with this all along.
West Virginia might not make as much sense from a geographical standpoint, but geography no longer means anything when it comes to conference expansion.
And again, let’s all remember what’s fueling the conference expansion train. Football! Which school has a better football program? That would be West Virginia.
Now of course, the Big 12 could have chosen to add both schools to the mix, but it doesn’t seem like that option is in the plans as of right now. Having 10 schools is a little easier to work with than 11, unless of course they already had a 12th school in mind.
I find it hard to believe that Big 12 officials won’t try to reach 12 schools at some point in the near future though.
After all, this is the Big “12″ ya know. So with them saying that they are picking West Virginia over Louisville right now doesn’t necessarily mean that Louisville won’t be considered within the next few months or so.
As fast as things change in this process, saying that you’ll stay at 10 teams means absolutely nothing when you look at the long-term picture.
The conference shuffle will continue, and eventually, the Big 12 will be at 12 once again.