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4-1-Zoo: Big 12 Could Poach The Big East

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PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — A recent blog post by Jon Wilner of the Mercury News states that Pitt might not be alone in these Big 12 rumors.

Earlier in the week it was rumored that Pitt looks to be the primary target for the Big 12′s expansion committee, along with BYU, Notre Dame and Arkansas. Well, Wilner says it’s not just Pitt the Big 12 is interested in.

Wilner writes:

“The Big 12 is considering a raid of the Big East for at least two teams and perhaps more.

“The names I heard from multiple sources were Pittsburgh and Rutgers, but I have to believe others, including Louisville and West Virginia, are in play.

“The notion that the Big 12 was only interested in Pitt as a package deal with Notre Dame, I was told, is rubbish.”

Pitt and Rutgers make sense — big TV markets. West Virginia and Louisville likely bring a high level of competition in the coming years with devoted fan bases. Really, those four school would be an outstanding addition to any conference.

The Big 12 is in scramble mode, and it has to be. Texas A&M has left and joins Colorado and Nebraska as departed members in a little over a year’s time.

As the Big 12 loses members other conferences are surely looking to poach. With Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech still conference members, many reports and rumors allude that the Pac-12 would be interested in luring all four to create the Pac-16 Conference.

The Big 12 is clearly trying to counter by being aggressive in hunting down new members.

With this report, it’s still very clear that the Big East’s future is very much up in the air. But we can really say that about any conference aside from the Pac-12, Big Ten and SEC.

Wilner says if the Big 12 implodes it may trigger the utter chaos we’ve been waiting for since conference expansion began. I believe that to be spot on. The tipping point could be the next move involving the Big 12 — either by addition or subtraction.

Lots of work is going on behind the scenes.

Chris Gates | Area 4-1-Zoo Blog
Twitter.com/Chris_Gates
Chris.Gates@cbsradio.com

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