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Big 12 Conference needs to be proactive when it comes to realignment

Jerome Miron: USA TODAY Sports

Just when you thought that conference realignment was over for the time being, it could be heating up again soon. Like it or not, the college football landscape is changing drastically every year. The Big 12 Conference, which has previously stated that they would like to remain at ten teams for the foreseeable future, may soon be forced to join in on conference expansion or risk getting left behind; therefore, the conference’s athletic directors will discuss the  hot issue at their meeting in Dallas early next week.

The Big 12 has a new commissioner in Bob Bowlsby, and it appears that he understands that in order for the conference to survive, it must adapt to the changes that are being made across the country. Though the conference has no immediate plans to make changes, Bowlsby stated last week that the Big 12 would be “proactive” when it comes to conference realignment, which would clearly be in the conference’s best interest.

With the Atlantic Coast Conference seemingly on shaky ground, other conferences (including the newly expanded Big 10) are eager to bring them on board, which could potentially lead to the first “super conference.” The Big 12, therefore, cannot sit back and let other conferences grab potential future members while ignoring the changes that are taking place around them.

One of the biggest pieces to the realignment puzzle is Florida State. Rumors have swirled for months that the Seminoles could be looking around, and there is no doubt that they would be a valuable asset to whichever conference they decide to play in in the future.

Is the Big 12 interested in picking them up, possibly along with other ACC teams? There have been rumors that they are, but nothing is definitive at this point.

It’s difficult to say for certain what the college football landscape will look like in the future, but this discussion is one that Big 12 members must have to ensure their future as a top college football conference. They cannot afford to sit back and let things happen.

They must be proactive and take the lead in realignment or risk getting left behind. Things are changing rapidly; the Big 12 must be a leader and not a follower.