Texas A&M might want to act like grown-ups before doing something they'll regret
So if this is how it ends, Texas A&M copy-catting a toddler and wanting to take its ball and play with the other kids, what a horrible look.
The Big 12 has issues. We all know that. It’s been kept together so far mostly by Texas’ selfishness and the other schools’ lack of better options, and that’s no way for a long-term marriage to work. A&M’s frustration is understandable, but the way they’re dealing with it is weak.
Nebraska and Colorado left for better situations. Both of them. They did it with back channels, and they found options that are better for their schools and athletic programs in most every conceivable way. Good for them.
What A&M is threatening to do will be seen differently. They had their chance last summer to bolt. They decided to stay, and one year later are whining about it.
Whether this is a power-play or legitimate is still somewhat up for debate, but the fact that it’s gone far enough for a Texas politician to publicly talk about conversations being had and school administrators sending out cryptic messages means it is obviously serious.
But here’s the thing: A&M won’t be in a better situation if they leave for the SEC.
A lot of these screw-you feelings they’re having right now toward the Big 12 figure to be washed away once they start losing by three touchdowns against Alabama.
If the goal is to win conference and national championships, then the Big 12 provides by far the best option.
Part of the brilliance of Texas and Oklahoma staying in the league is that, on years they’re operating at close to capacity, they essentially have to win only one game — the one against each other — to be in the national championship.
A&M is in that next tier. In the SEC, they’ll be closer to Ole Miss than Alabama.
Financially, they don’t figure to gain all that much. The Big 12 has another TV negotiation coming up, and any difference in the league payouts needs to be considered with what is likely a lesser standing within the SEC.
The excitement of going to a new league would almost certainly create some nice initial donations, but over time, money follows success, and that success will be much more attainable in the Big 12 with the added bonus of playing traditional rivals.
Look, the Big 12 has a lot of issues. We all recognize that. And if A&M decides it’s better off in another league, good for them.
It’s just that they’ll look like babies doing it this way, and they’ll probably end up playing in a lot of Music City Bowls.