According to Andy Katz, Missouri is set to formally join the SEC.Â Apparently they were considering announcing Friday but didn't want to overshadow the LSU-Alabama game.
As if! Why should a mediocre athletic program overshadow the most anticipated game of the year?
In the short-term, the SEC should be sated. Assuming the alleged gentlemen's agreement is real, the SEC will not go after a school in a state where they already have a school.Â That would rule out Florida State, Georgia Tech and Clemson for further expansion, but leave open the possibility of Virginia or Virginia Tech.
It's hard to see any of the North Carolina schools being an option.Â Duke and Wake wouldn't be attractive to the football-centric conference, State has already ruled it out and UNC on the one hand is as deeply attached to the ACC as anyone and on the other, they're currently too shamed by scandal to be nakedly obvious about any interest in the greatest cheating conference in the land.
The Big East is off the board, so the only other conference able to seriously affect the ACC would be the Big Ten.Â But the new northern tier - B.C., Syracuse, Pitt - seem unlikely to jump again, or at least not so soon, and Maryland's options are somewhat lessened too.
The one thing which might change that is Maryland's relative poverty: according to a recent article in the Post, the Terrapins are seriously in the hole and it's just going to get worse.Â That might conceivably tempt them if the Big Ten shakes some big moneybags in their direction, but at the moment Maryland is not an attractive target.
So for the ACC, expansion may be over. The clear survivors are the ACC, the Big Ten, the SEC, and the PAC-whatever.
There should be enough pieces for the Big 12 to recover, although the commissioner says they will not expand right away.Â They have West Virginia already and could conceivably pick up BYU (though they are finding polite ways to object to the school's Mormon faith),Â possibly Notre Dame, Louisville and conceivably Cincinnati.
Left out of all these discussions is the morality of what's happened.Â A lot of history is being abandoned and there's no guarantee that everyone will live happily ever after.Â Nor is there any meaningful discussion of the place of sports in an academic setting, much less the responsibility to the athletes.
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