Arkansas Not Interested in Joining Big 12, AD Says

One of UT’s old Southwest Conference nemeses, The University of Arkansas, has been approached by the Big 12 about joining the conference but is not interested, according to Razorbacks athletics director Jeff Long.

Long told the Associated Press last night, hours after the SEC unanimously voted to allow Texas A&M as the 13th member (provided there are no legal snags), that Arkansas is content in the SEC, and that discussions with the Big 12 didn’t get very far.

“I think that our program is such that there are a number of conferences that would love to have us as a member, but we’re strongly committed to the SEC,” Long said. “I’d be surprised if we weren’t reached out to by other conferences about joining them. That happened, it didn’t surprise me, but we are committed to the SEC. It’s the strongest conference in the country and only going to get stronger.”

Long said the SEC is prepared to move forward with 13 teams should Texas A&M join the conference. He also said discussions over a 14th team had not begun but that other schools have expressed interest in joining the SEC.

Baylor has threatened to sue if Texas A&M leaves the Big 12 for the SEC, though there’s the talk of a compromise that would delay the Aggies from leaving for a year.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has weighed in, as well, arguing against nuking the Big 12 and cautioning that the movement toward superconferences will not, in the end, lead to more money for schools.

Photo courtesy UT Athletics.


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