The wheels are now in motion for a monumental change in college football.
Big 12 powerhouses Texas and Oklahoma notified the conference on Monday that they don't intend to renew their grant of media rights agreements once they expire in June 2025. This joint statement came before the two schools submitted a formal request of invitation to join the SEC on Tuesday.
So, what does this groundbreaking news mean for the future of the Big 12? Could its other programs eventually be poached, perhaps by the Pac-12?
"I don't think so. You've got to remember there's a lot of institutional ego that drives these decisions, and Stanford doesn't have a lot in common with Texas Tech," Yahoo Sports reporter Pete Thamel told The DA Show on Wednesday. "The notion of getting a toehold in Texas is a nice notion. But I think at the end of the day, is the juice worth the squeeze?... What you have to remember about the remaining eight in the Big 12 is -- when you talk about television deals -- are they going to make your TV deal whole?
"Texas and Oklahoma going to the SEC delivers the $120 million or more, annually, after '24 that's going to allow them to remain north of $60 million, annually. They deliver that type of TV value. Are any of those Big 12 schools worth enough a year where [other conferences] say, 'Okay, we'll pay $25-30 million more just for their TV rights' because they're going to deliver viewers? I don't think any of those schools would past that test..."
The potential conference realignment -- which was first reported last week by the Houston Chronicle -- would drastically alter the college sports landscape and create a 16-team mega conference. Texas and Oklahoma joined the Big 12 as inaugural members back in 1996, and since then, the storied rivals have won a combined 17 conference titles and 24 bowl games.
According to SI.com reporter Ross Dellenger, if both Texas and Oklahoma receive approval to join the SEC -- the conference requires a 75-percent or higher vote of "yes" from its current members -- the schools might remain in the Big 12 until their media contracts expire in 2025. Leaving earlier would mean paying the Big 12 an exit fee of $70-80 million.
The entire college football conversation between Thamel and DA can be accessed in the audio player above.