MJD moves away from a tackle by Sooner's Cory Bennett (#97). Bruins beat the Sooners by a score of 41-24 last time they faced off at the Rose Bowl on September 17, 2005. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Big-12 is in big trouble. It appears that Texas A&M and the weakened conference are finalizing their divorce papers. While noting major will probably break out in near future, it appears that Oklahoma Sooners head coach Bob Stoops not downplaying the idea of Sooners moving to the Pac-12. In fact, reportedly he is excited about joining UCLA and Southern Cal in a Pac-16 (emphasis added):
A year ago, Stoops endorsed the idea of OU joining the then-Pac-10 when that league attempted to expand to 16 members. He confirmed Tuesday that membership in a Pac-16 still excites him.
"Think about it," Stoops said. "A (league) championship game in the Rose Bowl, going to USC to play, the Rose Bowl and playing UCLA (the storied stadium serves as the Bruins' home field) ..."
Stoops also still believes if the Sooners eventually head west that it's vital to take at least three Big 12 teams with them. When commissioner Larry Scott was trying to grow the Pac-10 to 16 teams, he wanted to add OU, Oklahoma State, Texas and possibly Texas Tech.
"It's very important, because of (playing) games in this area and recruiting in Texas is still going to matter to us," Stoops said of at least two Texas-based Big 12 teams joining OU on the Left Coast. "Half our games would be here, and then we'd have a couple down there (Texas) for recruiting purposes."
We have shared extensive thoughts on Pac-12 expansion rumors involving Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech. You can read up here. 63 percent of this community gave a "thumbs up" to the idea of Sooners, Cowboys and Red Raiders joining the conference with another team, which could enable the conference to split up in two divisions reviving the Classic Pac-8.
Obviously lot of dominoes are left out there. Big-12 is on a desperate bid to keep itself intact. Texas has its own ideas. For UCLA pov, whatever moves Pac-12 ends up making, it needs to make sure Bruins best interest are preserved as one of flagship holding schools representing the number 2 media market in the country. It's not a coincidence that UCLA is one of the two schools that immediately came to Stoops' mind (and his brother coaches Arizona lol) when he "excitedly" discussed the topic of the Sooners joining the Pac.