Here is a roundup of links regarding the seemingly impending demise of the Big XII.
Joe Walljasper of the Columbia Daily Tribune: The Big 12 Receives its Last Rites. Joe blames Texas.
Phil Miller of The Sports Economist: More Death Throes for the Big XII. Shameless Self-Promotion.
Blair Kerkhoff of the Kansas City Star: KU AD Disappoionted in Oklahoma Talk.
Chris Fickett of the Kansas City Star: Pinkel Says Big 12 Has "Some Issues Other Leagues Don't Have". Pinkel mentioned conference commissioner Dan Beebe specifically, but isn't the big issue the Texas-centrist politics and economics within the league and, more specifically, the Longhorn Network?
Mike DeArmond of the Kansas City Star: Alden Worries Over Big 12 Instability, Backs Pinkels Comments.
Kellis Robinett of the Kansas City Star: John Currie Talks Realignment. Currie is Kansas State's AD.
Vahe Gregorian of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Alden Worried About Oklahoma Comments.
Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: As Big 12 Nears Death, MU looks for Life Elsewhere.
Chuck Carlton of the Dallas Morning News ($$$): Signs Point West, But UT's Dodds Likely to Decide Big 12's Fate.
Chuck Carlton ($$$): What Happens if Oklahoma Leaves? The Big 12 Dies.
Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News: Pac 12 Expected to be a Power Broker in Realignment Talks.
Associated Press: OU President: Decision on Whether to Leave Big 12 Coming Soon.
Berry Tramel of the Daily Oklahoman: OU's Sole Focus Now on Joining Pac-12.
Leagues are cooperatives and when a cooperative works well, according to game theory, the members act to improve their joint welfare (the ol' Nash Solution). But cooperatives are inherently unstable because of the incentive to cheat on the cooperative, and there needs to be some kind of enforcement mechanism to keep the cheating from happening. If there is no mechanism, the situation falls into a prisoners' dilemma type of game. That seems to be where we are at now, and all signs point to Texas being the one that cheated.
Maybe, just maybe, everything that's going on in the Big XII right now will encourage Texas to work together with the other schools to bring stability back to the Big 12, and maybe encourage Texas A&M to stay. Texas will not have the power in a conference like the SEC, Big 10, or Pac 12 that it has in the Big 12. It may have to share pooled media revenues equally with all other conference members and have equal say in political matters. It may not be able to have its Longhorn Network, the cancer that threatens the entire conference, or it may be forced to strip down the content that can be shown on the LHN. Or, horrors, it might be forced to share revenue generated by the LHN.
And maybe conference middleweights like Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Missouri, and Kansas have been diligently working behind the scenes to improve their options so they will have something to fall back on if the Texas and Oklahoma bolt. Tech and OSU probably have the best options since most observers are predicting them to join OU, and maybe Texas, to the Pac 12. Better options give strength in negotiations.
It's a long shot, I know. But I'm trying to be positive here.