Big 12 Conference

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Big 12 Conference
(Big 12)
Big 12 Conference logo
Established February 25, 1994[1]
Association NCAA
Division Division I FBS
Members 10
Sports fielded 21 (men's: 10; women's: 11)
Region
Headquarters Irving, Texas
Commissioner Bob Bowlsby
Website www.big12sports.com
Locations
Big 12 Conference locations

The Big 12 Conference is a ten-school collegiate athletic conference headquartered in Irving, Texas. It is a member of the NCAA's Division I for all sports; its football teams compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS; formerly Division I-A), the higher of two levels of NCAA Division I football competition. Member schools are located in Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and West Virginia.

According to the Big 12 Conference's website, the alternate names "Big Twelve" and "Big XII" are incorrect. The trademarked name of the conference is Big 12 Conference, notwithstanding the Roman numeral XII featured on the conference logo.[2] The current Big 12 Commissioner is Bob Bowlsby.

Member schools[edit]

Current members[edit]

Institution Location
(Pop.)
Founded Type Enrollment Endowment[3] Joined Nickname Colors Mascot Varsity
Sports
National
Titles
(See chart below)
Baylor University Waco, Texas
(126,697)
1845 Private 15,195 $1,003,929,000 1996 Bears          [4] Judge / Bruiser 16 4
Iowa State University Ames, Iowa
(59,042)
1858 Public 33,241 $612,283,000 1996 Cyclones          [5] Cy the Cardinal 16 18
University of Kansas Lawrence, Kansas
(88,727)
1865 Public 30,004[6] $1,250,443,000 (System-wide) 1996 Jayhawks          [7] Big Jay / Baby Jay 16 13
Kansas State University Manhattan, Kansas
(52,281)
1863 Public 24,378[8] $337,460,000 1996 Wildcats          [9] Willie the Wildcat 14 0
University of Oklahoma Norman, Oklahoma
(113,273)
1890 Public 29,721 $1,212,023,000 (System-wide) 1996 Sooners          [10] Sooner Schooner / Boomer and Sooner 19 27
Oklahoma State University Stillwater, Oklahoma
(46,048)
1890 Public 23,307 $817,625,000 1996 Cowboys/Cowgirls          [11] Pistol Pete / Bullet 16 55
University of Texas at Austin Austin, Texas
(820,611)
1883 Public 51,195[12] $2,800,000,000 1996 Longhorns          [13] Bevo / Hook 'em 18 50
Texas Christian University Fort Worth, Texas
(758,738)
1873 Private 9,142 $1,191,900,000 2012 Horned Frogs          [14] Super Frog 18 5
Texas Tech University Lubbock, Texas
(233,740)
1923 Public 33,111 $1,043,000,000[15] (System-wide) 1996 Red Raiders          [16] Masked Rider / Raider Red 16 1
West Virginia University Morgantown, West Virginia
(30,293)
1867 Public 29,707 $392,001,000 2012 Mountaineers          [17] The Mountaineer 17 20

Future affiliate members[edit]

Institution Nickname Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary Conference Big 12 Sport Joining
University of Alabama Crimson Tide Tuscaloosa, Alabama 1831 Public 31,747 SEC Women's rowing 2015
Old Dominion University Lady Monarchs Norfolk, Virginia 1930 Public 24,125 Conference USA Women's rowing 2015
University of Tennessee Lady Volunteers Knoxville, Tennessee 1794 Public 27,523 SEC Women's rowing 2015

Former members[edit]

Institution Location
(Population)
Founded Type Enrollment Joined Left Nickname Colors NCAA
Titles[18]
Current
Conference
University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado
(100,160)
1876 Public 30,128 1996 2011 Buffaloes               [19] 22 Pac-12
University of Missouri Columbia, Missouri
(110,438)
1839 Public 34,255[20] 1996 2012 Tigers          [21] 2 SEC
University of Nebraska Lincoln, Nebraska
(225,581)
1869 Public 24,100[22] 1996 2011 Cornhuskers          [23] 16 Big Ten
Texas A&M University College Station, Texas
(95,142)
1876 Public 53,337 1996 2012 Aggies          [24] 10 SEC

Membership timeline[edit]

West Virginia University Big East Conference (1979–2013) Texas Christian University Mountain West Conference Conference USA Western Athletic Conference Texas Tech University University of Texas at Austin Oklahoma State University–Stillwater University of Oklahoma Kansas State University University of Kansas Iowa State University Baylor University Southeastern Conference Texas A&M University Southeastern Conference University of Missouri Big Ten Conference University of Nebraska–Lincoln Pacific 12 Conference University of Colorado at Boulder

Full members Other Conference

History[edit]

The Big 12 Conference is the second youngest of the major college athletic conferences in the United States, having formed in 1994 from a merger of one of the oldest conferences, the Big Eight, with four prominent colleges from Texas that had been members of the Southwest Conference. From its formation until 2011, its 12 members competed in two divisions. Two charter members left the conference in 2011, and in 2012, two more left, while another two joined from other conferences. In 2012, the Big 12 formed an alliance with the Southeastern Conference to host a joint post-season college bowl game between the champions of each conference, which would eventually become the Sugar Bowl.[citation needed]

Origins[edit]

College Football Association last days[edit]

On June 27, 1984, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in NCAA v. Board of Regents of University of Oklahoma that the NCAA could not punish its membership for selling their media content. As a result, individual schools and athletic conferences were freed to negotiate contracts on their own behalf.

The Big Ten and Pacific-10 conferences sold their rights to ABC. Most of the rest of the Division I-A football programs (what is now called the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision) chose to sell their rights together through an organization called the College Football Association to ABC and CBS. The primary function of the CFA was to negotiate television broadcast rights for its member conferences and independent colleges.[citation needed]

By 1990, the television landscape had changed and a number of the stronger programs saw opportunities for better deals outside of the CFA. Notre Dame left the CFA and sold their home game broadcast rights to NBC.[25]

When the Southeastern Conference invited the University of Arkansas and the University of South Carolina to join in 1990, it created shockwaves across the CFA. The other CFA conferences correctly assumed the SEC made these additions to create a better TV product with the idea of leaving the CFA.[citation needed]

The SEC represented one of the more valuable CFA assets. It seemed likely that if the SEC departed, the other conferences could have difficulty securing good TV deals.[citation needed]

After Arkansas' departure from the Southwest Conference, the SWC and Big Eight Conference recognized they were in a poor position. The SEC, with about 18% of the nation's TV audience, had a very strong TV position. The Big 8 had an 8.1% share. The Texas based SWC had an even weaker hand with only 6.7%.[26]

In February 1994, the Southeastern Conference announced that they would be leaving the CFA and negotiate independently for a television deal that covered SEC schools only. This led The Dallas Morning News to proclaim that "the College Football Association as a television entity is dead".[27] In 1995, the SEC and the Big East broke from the CFA, signing a national deal with CBS. The SEC would earn a staggering $95 million from the deal. More significantly, this change in television contracts ultimately would lead to significant realignment of college conferences.

The Southwest Conference[edit]

For decades the Southwest Conference (SWC) was one of the most dominant football conferences in America. It was seen as a football peer to other elite conferences like the Pac-10, Big 10, SEC and Big Eight.[26][28]

Then professional football came to Dallas and Houston. Attendance at Rice, SMU, TCU, and Houston collapsed.[26][28][29] For over two decades, the SWC membership struggled with the issue. In 1974 a lengthy article detailing the revenue collapse at Rice, Houston, SMU, and TCU and suggested it would lead to a collapse of the historic conference. The conference collapsed in 1994.[28]

The three programs with the strongest fan support, University of Texas-Austin, University of Arkansas, and Texas A&M resented having to play less lucrative games in conference in front of very small crowds. Further every time a team went to a bowl game, the lion's share of the revenue was given to the schools who did not go. The big three were subsidizing the conference and began to voice their frustration in the media.[28]

In response to these pressures, the SWC schools with the smaller budgets felt a more pressing need to win to keep fans coming in. They began paying top players to come to their schools. In the 1980s most of the SWC schools spent time on probation for rule violations. SMU was given the death penalty for their rule violations.[citation needed][30]

By 1986, SWC schools' NCAA penalties and bowl game ineligibilities had begun compromise the SWC brand, driving top Texas talent out of state. Even top schools that had mostly stayed clear of trouble found their recruiting diminished. After years of SWC schools doing well in bowls, they suddenly could not compete with the elite schools of other conferences. A December 18, 1986 Dallas Morning News article stated:

"Recruiting experts say the allegations have chased Texas's home-grown talent to other conferences. And while other conferences raid the state, the SWC stays at home, making do with a shrinking talent pool. Earlier this month, seven of the Dallas area`s leading recruits—including running back Barry Foster of nearby Duncanville, Texas, The Dallas Morning News' Offensive Player of the Year—said they no longer were interested in the SWC, calling it 'shaky' or 'screwed-up.' Said Bennie Perry, a defensive back from Bryan Adams High School in Dallas: 'You couldn`t pay me to go to a Southwest Conference school, because they`re getting into too much trouble.'" [31]

As sanctions began to sap the quality of play at the top of the conference, The big three began to actively look at other conferences. In attempts to appease the conference powers, the other members made financial rule changes, eventually including allowing home teams to keep their gate revenue (Gate revenue was a much larger portion of operating funds at that time).[29] These efforts fell short of satisfying the bigger issues UT and Texas A&M had with the SWC, but would appear to have played a role in UT's position going forward on revenue sharing.

Eventually, Arkansas departed for the Southeastern Conference. The SEC comprised primarily rural public schools that drew well and the conference had a much larger share of the nation's TV markets. As game day attendance and TV revenue drove athletic budgets, The SEC represented a much more financially sound organization.

UT Athletic director DeLoss Dodds reflected on the importance of Arkansas' departure saying, “What had to happen, [was] there had to be a crisis for change.” [32]

Arkansas' athletic director Frank Broyles said that he was encouraged to leave by UT's and Texas A&M's leaders, because it would destabilize the conference, allowing them to do the same. The leaderships at UT and Texas A&M believed they would never be allowed to leave first.[32] (In the summer of 1990, word would leak of Texas and Texas A&M thinking of following Arkansas into the SEC. Reaction in Texas would be very negative, with politicians threatening both schools' funding before the idea was tabled.[33])

The Southwest Conference could not find a replacement its membership would agree upon. The private schools were in denial of the depth of problems facing the conference. They suggested simply replacing Arkansas, a public school, with private schools BYU or Tulane. With four private schools and four public schools already in the SWC, adding either choice could potentially give the private schools a voting majority.

Private or not, UT and Texas A&M were dead set against replacing Arkansas. The NCAA sanctions and Arkansas' departure made the conference appear broken to fans in Texas. Texas and Texas A&M's leaderships felt the conference was inherently flawed, with too many mouths to feed off too few TVs. Adding a single school was not going to change that dynamic,[32] it would only create the public perception of a healed conference and prolong UT and Texas A&M's suffering.

"Predatory" conferences[edit]

Missouri showed interest in Big Ten membership after Penn State joined.[34] Around 1993, the Big Ten explored adding Kansas, Missouri and Rutgers, or other potential schools, to create a 14-team league with two divisions.[35]

In the early 1990s, Texas had discussions with the Pac-10, a conference with similar academic views. An affiliation with the Pac-10 appealed to UT leaders. Former UT president Robert Berdahl told Mark Wagrin of the San Antonio Express-News “Texas wanted desperately the academic patina that the Pac 10 yielded... To be associated with UCLA, Stanford and Cal in academics was very desirable.” [32] The Pac-10 wanted to add UT and the University of Colorado. For some reason, an offer didn't come until after the formation of the Big 12.[36]

Some reports state the Stanford refused to vote to admit UT in an effort to protect the Cardinal's conference dominance in non-revenue sports.[32] (The Pac-10 required unanimous votes for expansion.)

(At the end of 1994, UT's Athletic Director Deloss Dodds, as he was turning down the Pac-10, stated that the Pac-10 leadership informed UT they would have a standing invitation for the Longhorns. What is unclear, is when the Pacific-10 made that offer, although Dodds did use the word "always" in describing the offer.)[37]

One report stated that the offer was changed to UT and Texas A&M. UT reportedly tried to carry Texas A&M with them into the Big 10.[33] No evnidence confirms Pac-10 support for that idea. This change allegedly upset the leadership at Colorado and drove them to take a more active role in protecting the Big Eight. (Colorado's Chancellor James Corbridge was also the Big Eight chairman. He was very involved with the TV negotiations for the new conference and the integration of the Texas schools.[38])

UT then approached the Big 10, but was turned down, because the conference had recently instituted a moratorium on expansion.[32]

Texas then turned to the SEC, and negotiations reach an advanced stage. UT abruptly withdrew after concluding that the SEC had no interest in strengthening academics. Berdahl said, “We were quite interested in raising academic standards... And the Southeastern Conference had absolutely no interest in that.”[32]

Texas A&M had flirted with the SEC since the late 1980s. In 1993, it had approached the conferencce about joining, partnered with the University of Houston, but the SEC did not consider Houston a good enough candidate and passed. UT had given up on the SEC and Texas A&M's leadership didn't want to try leaving the SWC on their own. The SEC moved expansion plans to the backburner.[32]

Then UT's interests turned to the Big Eight. Texas and Oklahoma's leaders both looked favorably on the idea of being in the same conference, but both schools had other options. Former Kansas State University president Jon Wefald voiced fears that if UT had joined the Pac-10, there would be no way for the Big Eight to ramp up their TV payouts in order to keep Oklahoma from joining the SEC for more lucrative TV payouts.[39]

Negotiations with Texas and other schools[edit]

The Big Eight had been in pursuit of some kind of alliance with the Southwest Conference since Arkansas's departure destabilized that historic conference.[citation needed]

The Big Eight and SWC members saw the potential financial benefits from an alliance to negotiate television deals, but a true alliance of 16 teams which would retain the seven other SWC schools was not viewed as optimal by UT. Dodds and the Longhorn leadership viewed proposals of this sort as continuing business as usual in the SWC. Arkansas's departure allowed UT and Texas A&M to clear four or more less profitable dates from their football schedules and eight or more from their basketball schedules.[citation needed]

For years the Big Eight could not interest UT in a merger. Without Texas to ensure the retention of Oklahoma, the Big Eight was not interested.[clarification needed][39]

Reports at the end of 1993 disclosed the discussions of the Big Eight about adding BYU and half of the SWC, with SMU, TCU, Rice and Houston "priced out" of the new conference.[26][40]

The Big Eight began negotiations with ABC and ESPN for a new conference that would feature football powers[citation needed] Nebraska, Oklahoma, Colorado,[citation needed] and Texas.[citation needed]

Texas politicians ban[edit]

After the SEC announced their intent to leave the CFA, the Big 8 and SWC members re-opened discussions to sell their rights together. "The Baylor Project" by Barry G. Hankins and Donald D. Schmeltekoff (page 68) states that on February 11, 1994, SWC member schools' leaders met a few Big 8 leaders in Dallas to discuss potentially selling both leagues' media content in a package deal. Discussions broke down on February 16, reportedly over UT's interest in the Pac-10. The Big Eight began negotiating a deal that would not include the full SWC as a partner and Texas A&M approached the SEC.[41]

In Texas, word leaked out that UT & Texas A&M were close to leaving the SWC; UT to the Pac-10[41] or Big Eight and eventually Texas A&M to the SEC. Texas state senator David Sibley, a Baylor alumnus and member of the very powerful Senate Finance Committee, approached UT Chancellor Bill Cunningham and asked him pointedly whether UT planned to leave the SWC on its own for the Big Eight. Cunningham tried to change the subject. Ultimately he did not deny it.[32]

Sibley approached LT Governor Bob Bullock, a Texas Tech and Baylor alumnus. Texas state senator John Montford of Lubbock was equally motivated to protect Texas Tech's path to the Big 12. The trio put together a group of legislators who worked to threaten Texas and Texas A&M's access to the state of Texas's Permanent University Fund.[32]

Bullock called together a meeting of supportive legislators as well as UT's and Texas A&M's leaders on February 20, 1994.[42] UT Chancellor William Cunningham admitted that Texas planned to join the Big Eight[32] and A&M's leadership still targeted the SEC.[32]

A deal was worked out where all four schools would go together to the Big 12. A&M was convinced not to pursue SEC membership (LSU was prepared to sponsor the Aggies) in return for Bullock finding the votes to approve the construction of Reed Arena. Baylor and Texas Tech would join the Aggies in coming with UT into the new version of the Big Eight.[32]

Texas's Governor Ann Richards, a Baylor and UT alumna, is often credited with getting Baylor included, but, was absent from the February 20 meeting[32] and no investigative reports confirm her active involvement. The Baylor Report claimed that she presented herself as neutral. Richards' former Chief of Staff, John Fainter, is on record saying "She just was not involved to any great degree in working that out...I'd have to say she was informed, but she wasn't pounding the table or anything like that." Richards was aware of the public perception of her involvement and the thought amused her.[43])

UT officials informed the Big Eight leadership that the Austin school was now receptive to an invitation and the Big Eight issued invitations to Texas, Texas A&M, Baylor, and Texas Tech. All four schools quickly accepted.[41]

At the time of the deal, Texas politicians denied any coercion took place. Over the years, investigative reporters challenged that notion. The idea that Bullock and the state government coerced A&M to join and forced UT to take Tech and Baylor to the Big 12 has constantly been downplayed by Cunningham,[43] but former UT president Robert Berdahl claimed that UT was threatened. “As I recall, it wasn't a very veiled threat to cut budgets if Tech was left behind.”[32]

Baylor President Herb Reynolds thanked Bullock and the other politicians for helping Baylor get into the conference. Despite Baylor's strong credentials, clearly Reynolds felt the politicians played a key role in getting the Bears and Texas Tech into the new conference.[44] The minutes of the February 23, 1994 meeting of the Baylor Board of Regents where the Big 12's invitation was accepted state, "Baylor University owes a strong debt of gratitude to Lt. Governor Bob Bullock, Senator David Sibley, Senator John Montford, Representative Rob Junell, and other legislators for their invaluable assistance during the deliberations leading to the acceptance of the invitations."[45]

Formation[edit]

On February 25, 1994, it was announced that a new conference would be formed from the members of the Big Eight and four of the Texas member colleges of the Southwest Conference.[41][46][47] Though the name would not be made official for several months, newspaper accounts immediately dubbed the new entity the "Big 12".[48] Charter members of the Big 12 included: Baylor University, the University of Colorado at Boulder, Iowa State University, University of Kansas, Kansas State University, the University of Missouri, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, the University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University–Stillwater, the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M University and Texas Tech University.

Three months after formation, the schools of the new conference officially announced the conference's name: the Big 12 Conference.[47] Conference competition commenced on August 31, 1996.

Seven cities were considered for the conference's headquarters including:Colorado Springs, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City (the former headquarters of the Big Eight), Lubbock, Texas, Oklahoma City, and Omaha, Nebraska before Dallas suburb Irving, Texas was chosen.[49]

From the conference's formation until the 2010–11 season, the Big 12 was split into two divisions for football. The Oklahoma and Texas schools formed the South Division, while the six northernmost schools formed the North Division.

Pac-10[edit]

The Pacific-10 Conference unanimously voted to offer memberships to UT and Colorado at the end of 1994,[when?] but UT declined,[37] and the CU Regents also rejected the offer in a 6-3 vote,[38][50] opting to stay in the new Big 12.

Future expansion[edit]

The four Southwest Conference schools were not the only candidates the Big Eight considered. After the Big 12 was founded, leaks in 1994 claimed that the conference also had a plan for a 14 team membership in order to secure a larger TV share than the SEC, something some of the conference leadership felt might be vital for its future TV negotiations.[51]

Reports confirmed that Brigham Young University and the University of New Mexico, then in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC), were actively considered for Big 12 membership and if the conference should then decide to go to 16 schools, the University of Louisville and the University of Memphis would be favorites to fill those slots.[51] In anticipation of the possibility of expansion to 14 by 1996, the new conference trademarked both "Big 12" and "Big 14".[52] The idea was that BYU and New Mexico would raise the conference footprint to 20% of the nation's TV households while also giving the northern division another football powerhouse in BYU. Articles of the day suggested support for the idea was not uniform among Big 12 schools[51] and many quotes suggested such an expansion discounted the possibility.[which?][citation needed]

UNM's athletic director Rudy Davalos, former athletic director at the University of Houston, questioned the logic of the Big 12 adding UNM. Davalos publicly expressed a commitment to the WAC.[51] Former Baylor President Herbert H. Reynolds speaks of making the case to his board that much of the value of the Big 12 for Baylor arose from the Waco university being the only private school in the conference.[53]

TCU's AD at the time, Frank Windegger was told by colleagues that TCU was discussed as a package deal with BYU, with the idea even going to a vote --- but the expansion vote was narrowly defeated.[54]

Ultimately the conference chose to stay at 12 members. BYU's athletic director Clayne Jensen told the press that while the addition of BYU could likely pay for the Cougars' admission as the conference's 13th member, it appeared no other candidate school made financial sense to allow to become the 14th member.[52]

The greater influence held by the schools in the southern division would later be cited repeatedly as a key component in Nebraska's eventual decision to leave.[citation needed]

Conference realignment[edit]

Locations of the Big 12 Conference full-member institutions.

During the 2010–13 NCAA conference realignment, the Big 12 was one of the more heavily impacted. Persistent rumors of the Pac-10 and Big Ten targeting key members created unease and suspicion. Questions about TV contracts and dissatisfaction with the Big 12's policy of unequal revenue sharing created more conflict. This erosion of trust allowed other conferences to raid the Big 12.[citation needed]

The Big 12 lost four members between 2010 and 2013, replaced by two others. Remaining below 12 members would end the Big 12's divisional format, as the NCAA only allows football championship games in conferences with at least twelve teams.[citation needed]

Following these departures, the Conference chose to retain the "Big 12" name and logo despite dropping to ten schools,[55] a marketing decision similar to the Big Ten Conference's choice to keep its name after its membership increased to 14 with the additions of Maryland and Rutgers. This decision by the Big 12 reminded fans of the near collapse of the conference in the realignment period and to suggest the limited expansion options facing the conference.[citation needed]

2010[edit]

Destabilization[edit]

In May 2010, reports speculated that the Big 12 Conference was on the verge of dissolution. In February, reports stated the desire by the Pac-10 to expand the conference. The article said that the only school that "moved the needle" financially for the Pac-10 was Texas.[56]

In March, the Big Ten received the initial report from consultants hired to investigate five potential expansion candidates, including Missouri. The initial report supported the expansion.[57]

On April 20[58] and May 3,[59] Sports Illustrated predicted that the Big Ten would ultimately add Nebraska.

Later in May the Big Ten Conference reportedly issued "initial offers" to Missouri, Nebraska, Notre Dame and Rutgers.[60] On May 12, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany emailed conference officials, denying that any offers had been made. The league planned to take no action until the league Presidents met in June.[61]

During the Big 12 meetings in June, the Pac-10 was rumored to be on the verge of inviting Colorado, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State to join them.[62]

The Pac-10 had tried to land Texas and Colorado in 1994. This new offer acknowledged that Texas was unlikely to leave the Big 12 without Oklahoma due to the Red River Rivalry' importance to UT's athletic budget. Both schools had in-state rival schools that needed to be included.[citation needed]

Although The Pac-10's attempt bears a number of similarities to the Big 8's raid of the SWC, fans of the targeted Texas schools were resistant. This suggested that the Pac-10 leadership did a poor job of selling the benefits of Pac-10 membership. The Pac-12 was considered too distant for many fans. In contrast, Big 12 concerns about travel distance tended to originate from Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston, cities whose schools were to be excluded.[citation needed]

Rumors that the Big Ten was interested in Texas also emerged.[63] Texas Athletic Director Deloss Dodds openly talked about both rumors in the media. On June 3, Texas A&M athletic director Bill Byrne said that the Aggies might consider joining the SEC, should the Big 12 collapse.[64]

Texas and Texas A&M held veto power over each other that would keep them in the same conference.[65] UT was struggling to hold the Big 12 together, contrary to public perception. The Big 10 was rumored to be considering adding Missouri and leaving Nebraska stranded in the remains of the Big 12, while the state of Texas reportedly might allow Texas A&M to go the SEC, but that UT would likely not play the Aggies should they leave.[66]

Unequal revenue[edit]

One point of contention in the Big 12 was the unequal distribution of TV revenue, as was common in most other top conferences. Nebraska, Texas, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma objected to equal sharing, according to former Commissioner Dan Beebe. Four votes gave them the ability to block revenue sharing votes. After his 2011 firing, Beebe said that Oklahoma, Nebraska, and even Texas A&M were interested in "developing their own distribution systems" for sports programs.[67]

Raids begin[edit]

On June 5, a movement was reportedly building in Texas to force the Pac-10 to invite Baylor instead of Colorado. This would give Texas a solid voting block of 4 Texas schools and two strongly aligned Oklahoma schools.[68] The Pac-10 quickly eliminated that possibility by modifying their original offer (a package deal for all six schools) to be a standalone offer for Colorado and a package deal for the other five.[69]

On June 10, Colorado joined the Pac-10, to be effective in 2012, but later advanced to July 1, 2011.[70] Colorado reportedly accepted quickly for fear that Baylor would force its way in, leaving Colorado in a dissolving conference. On June 11, Nebraska applied for and was accepted into the Big Ten, effective July 1, 2011.[71]

The departures of the Texas teams to the Pac-10 was reportedly imminent, including a possibility that Texas A&M might instead choose the SEC.[72]

June 14 agreement[edit]

On June 14, the Big 12 announced a deal to save the conference.[73] Lobbying by Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri, supported by pressure from other programs who did not want elite conferences to become 16-team "superconferences". The deal required a restructured revenue sharing agreement that guaranteed Oklahoma, Texas, and Texas A&M $20 million each per year (the other schools would split the rest) and an unexpectedly lucrative television deal if the conference stayed together.[74]

With the big three securing payments that more or less matched what they would have received in a Pac-16 and Texas committing to the conference, Oklahoma stayed and Texas A&M's exit was temporarily obscured.

In the 2010 round of realignment, UT had secured a better conference TV deal and a bigger share of that deal and gained what Dodds considered an easier path to the national title game. It also was permitted its own network (the Longhorn Network) and had gotten Nebraska out of the conference.[75] However, the $20 Million payouts did not soothe hard feelings at Texas A&M and Oklahoma.[citation needed]

Texas A&M and Oklahoma ended contact with the Southeastern Conference, which had been pursuing both schools as potential candidates if their conference decided to expand past 12 members.[75][76]

On June 16, 2010, Houstaon state lawmakers Garnet Coleman and Bill Callegari co-wrote a letter asking Big 12 officials to consider adding the University of Houston (a Conference USA member) to the Big 12.[77]

2011[edit]

Grant of Rights agreement[edit]

Following the near disaster in 2010, the other five pushed for a spring vote on a "Grant of Rights" deal that would grant all sports media rights of member schools to the conference. This would make it very difficult for a key school to leave. The proposal needed a 75% majority, but was defeated by Texas, Oklahoma and Texas A&M.[78]

Longhorn Network[edit]

ESPN planned to launch the Longhorn Network and to include Texas High School football games. Oklahoma and Texas A&M objected that doing so would create a recruiting advantage for the Longhorns. Texas A&M went so far as to accuse Texas of violating NCAA rules.[79]

Oklahoma and Texas A&M had agreed to allow the Longhorn Network in exchange for the $20 Million guarantees in 2010, but in 2011, the reality of the network proved unacceptable. Texas A&M wanted to convince the state that Dodds and Texas were unfaithful conference partners. They created animosity between Texas and Texas A&M fans and sympathy with the unaffiliated Texas masses to allow the Aggies to escape the Big 12 for their long-preferred home, the SEC.[citation needed]

In addition to a non-conference game each season, ESPN wanted a Big 12 Conference game on the Longhorn Network. At the same Big 12 meeting discussing high school football broadcasts, it was agreed that a conference game would be acceptable as long as both schools and the conference office approved the broadcast.[80]

It was reported that ESPN asked Texas Tech for permission to broadcast their November 5 game against the Longhorns on the network. ESPN told the university that the game would most likely not be carried on an ESPN network, leaving LHN as the only option. In return, ESPN promised to televise two non-conference football games over the next four seasons, broadcast some other non-football programming, $5 million cash and help from the network to try to arrange a home-and-home series against a top BCS conference school. Texas Tech passed on the offer, explaining, "I don't want a Tech fan to have to give one dime to the Longhorn Network".[81]

ESPN then contacted Oklahoma State, without success.[81] Texas Athletics eventually announced that the Kansas Jayhawks had agreed to let their game against the Longhorns on October 29 be shown on the network (KU's third tier media rights are also managed by LHN co-owner IMG College). The agreement allowed the Longhorn Network to be the national carrier of the game except in Kansas markets, where the game was shown on local network affiliates.[82]

Texas A&M[edit]

In August 2011, A&M announced plans to apply to join an unspecified conference.[83] Its desire to leave the Big 12 was presented as concerns about conference stability and the Longhorn Network.[84]

On September 2, David Boren, president of the University of Oklahoma, announced that his school was actively re-evaulating its conference membership.[85][86] Having moved on from its SEC flirtation over concerns of a booster-led backslide into recruiting violations, Oklahoma began pursuing Pac-12 membership in a package deal with Oklahoma State, due to its frustration with the Big 12.[87] Dodds and UT president William Powers attempted to convince OU to stay, but they were unsuccessful.[88] OU reportedly liked the potential of upgrading their academic and research reputation in an effort to earn AAU status in addition to their football coaching staff's desire to expand recruiting efforts into California.[citation needed]

Having just expanded to 12 and landed a very lucrative TV deal, the Pacific-12 leaders were not actively looking to expand again. They opted to wait until the SEC added Texas A&M before inviting the Oklahoma schools.[89]

In mid-September, the SEC accepted Texas A&M as its thirteenth member,[90] conditional upon a reaffirmation that the Big 12 would not pursue legal action.[91] The SEC later reported that they had been assured that the Big 12 would waive its rights to legal action. However, Baylor rejected that they had waived their school's rights to pursue legal action for tortious interference. Several other Big 12 schools adopted Baylor's position.[85][92]

The SEC leadership were angry and embarrassed about being misled. On September 25, the SEC announced that Texas A&M was being accepted unconditionally—regardless of legal threats. Texas A&M announced the school would officially join the SEC on July 1, 2012.[93] As part of Texas A&M's settlement for their exit, the Big 12 Conference withheld $12.4 million of Big 12 revenue otherwise due to Texas A&M.[94]

Media rights and expansion[edit]

The Big 12 said it would form a committee to replace Texas A&M with at least one other school.[83][95] The Oklahoma schools, eager for a long-term home, were reportedly still considering applying to the Pac-12,[96][97][98] while the other five schools entered talks with the Big East.[99]

Further realignment was temporarily halted on September 20, when the Pac-12 reiterated its desire to remain a twelve-school conference,[100] as Texas would not compromise on the Longhorn Network or commit to equal revenue sharing. The Pac-12 also publicly confirmed the lack of support for adding Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.[101] After Oklahoma and Oklahoma State's pathw to the Pac-12 crumbled, an Oklahoma source leaked to the media that Oklahoma was just attempting to use the threat of departure to reform the Big 12.[102]

With no prospect of Pac-12 membership, Oklahoma and Texas's positions changed dramatically and preserving the Big 12 became those schools' primary goal. Missouri and Oklahoma in particular would play a leadership role in stabilizing the Big 12. On September 23, Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton, the Chairman of the Big 12 Board of Directors, announced that the conference presidents agreed in principle to pursue granting member school media rights to the conference. Oklahoma's President David Boren called the agreement "'essential' for the league’s future".[78] UT's Deloss Dodds had opposed the idea saying, "UT officials 'don’t want to sign over' any TV rights to the league", the day before all the league's presidents (including UT's) endorsed the idea.[78]

The same day, the Big 12 announced the departure of Commissioner Dan Beebe, who was seen as dominated by Texas, replaced by Interim commissioner Chuck Neinas, a former Big Eight commissioner.[103] Neinas took over on October 3.[104]

Broadcast revenue[edit]

On October 5 the Big 12 agreed to equally distribute Tier I and II television revenues. Dodds had long been firmly against equal sharing of TV revenue, but UT blessed the deal to stabilize the conference.[105]

On October 6, the Big 12 Conference Board of Directors, acting upon a unanimous recommendation of the expansion committee, authorized negotiations with Texas Christian University (TCU) to become a member. TCU had recently agreed to join the Big East Conference.[106] but their fans had wanted to be in the Big 12 since the SWC crashed. On October 10, Texas Christian University's Board of Trustees voted to accept the invitation, joining on July 1, 2012.

A Big 12 official named Brigham Young University and the University of Louisville as other expansion candidates.[107] It would later leak that the Big 12's television partners were unenthusiastic about BYU.[108]

With the loss of Texas A&M and its Aggie fan base, the conference thought there was now a need/opening for another Texas school. While the TCU fan base was significantly smaller, TCU was in a good location. With the SEC now having a significant Texas presence, adding Dallas/Fort Worth-based TCU made sense in terms of protecting the other Texas and Oklahoma schools' access to DFW-area recruiting.[citation needed]

TCU had long rivalries with several Big 12 schools, notably with Baylor, dating back to 1899.[109]

Missouri leaves[edit]

By rushing the addition of the Aggies, the SEC had created a two division, 13 team conference for 2012. They needed an acceptable 14th team immediately to ease the scheduling issues created by the Aggies. The Big 12 had plenty of strong candidates and was still unstable.[citation needed]

Despite the work of the Missouri Chancellor to evolve the Big 12, on October 4, Missouri's Board of Curators authorized the school's president to explore applying to other conferences.[110]

A year earlier, speculation grew that Missouri was interested in becoming the Big Ten's twelfth member and was the favorite, but instead Nebraska became the choice.[citation needed]

On October 6, the day after the revenue sharing change, the Big 12 Board of Directors voted 8-0 to formally grant their media rights to the conference. On advice of the Missouri legal counsel, Missouri opted not to vote.[111]

On October 11, Neinas stated that Missouri would remain for the 2012 season.[112] In spite of Neinas's statement, on October 21 its Board of Curators authorized Chancellor Deaton to move the school out of the Big 12 Conference should that be in the school's best interest.[113] The Big 12 began looking for a suitable replacement school that could start play in 2012.[citation needed]

On November 6, Missouri officially announced that it would join the Southeastern Conference effective July 1, 2012.[114] As compensation for the departure, the Big 12 withheld $12.4 million of the revenue it would have shared with Missouri; additionally, they announced that Missouri would not share the revenue from a newly signed contract between the Big 12 Conference and Fox Sports. Missouri also agreed to pay the Big 12 Conference for its share of officiating costs of its final year in the conference, as it had done in prior years (an estimated payment of $500,000).[94]

West Virginia replaces Missouri[edit]

On October 25, word leaked that West Virginia would replace Missouri.[115] The next day the New York Times reported the Big 12 had backed off their verbal commitment to West Virginia and was now split between Louisville and West Virginia after some Big 12 leaders were lobbied by U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell.[116] West Virginia cancelled plans for a press conference. The conference requested that West Virginia supply it with more information.[117]

On October 28, WVU officially joined the Big 12 and committed to begin play in the 2012 season.[118]

The Mountaineers' former conference, the Big East Conference, required 27 months of notice prior to withdrawal, as drafted by West Virginia's legal team. Big East Commissioner John Marinatto said that West Virginia would not be allowed to leave before July 1, 2014.[119]

In response, West Virginia filed a lawsuit to declare invalid the withdrawal-notice requirement stipulated in the Big East's bylaws.[120] The lawsuit alleged that the Big East breached its fiduciary duty by allowing several football-playing members to depart, causing the conference to no longer be a major football conference and jeopardizing its continued existence.[121] Because of this, West Virginia alleged, its continued performance under the contract had become unreasonably burdensome and its original purpose in entering into the contract had been eliminated.[122]

West Virginia stated its belief that its notice to withdraw in 2012 was indeed accepted, when the Big East Conference accepted its payment of half the $5 million withdrawal penalty.[122] Marinatto denied the allegations.[123]

The Big East countersued.[124] West Virginia's request to dismiss the suit was denied. The Big East Conference's lawsuit was scheduled to begin arguments in April 2012,[125] but on February 14, 2012, West Virginia announced that it had settled.[126]

This cleared the final hurdle for West Virginia.[127] While terms of the settlement were confidential, West Virginia's athletic director said that the settlement would be paid only from private donations and money the athletes raised.[127] According to an anonymous source, the Big East would be paid $20 million, including $11 million from West Virginia and $9 million by the Big 12.[128] The agreement apparently stipulated that WVU's $2.5 million exit fee and revenue-sharing money would be applied towards the settlement.[129]

Distinctive elements[edit]

Big XII Logo.
Big 12 Conference logo, beginning in the 2014—15 season.

No championship game[edit]

The Big 12 is unique among the five conferences formerly known as 'contract conferences' in the late BCS/realignment era in that it only has 10 members. Twelve or more members are required for a conference championship game. (The Pacific-12 and Big Ten has 12 members have 12 members, the ACC and SEC have 14 football members each.)

Dodds and Brown, along with Oklahoma Coach Bob Stoops, preferred not to have a championship game.[130] Critics argued it was a competitive advantage over other contract conferences. Conferences with a championship game have their division champions play one of their toughest games of the year on the last week of the regular season.

Population base[edit]

Like the Southwest Conference, the Big 12 footprint has a small population base. It has the smallest population base by far of the contract conferences. Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, West Virginia and Iowa have a combined population of 37.8 Million. As of 2013, there are only 13,427,130 TV households in those states[131] (although West Virginia's support is very strong in the western half of neighboring Pennsylvania).

As of 2013, the US had 115.6 Million TV households.[132] The Big 12 footprint included only 8.6% of the total.

The Big 12's share of the nation's TVs is a fraction of that reached by the other contract conferences. This likely works against the conference in TV negotiations, but the conference negotiated tier 1 and 2 TV contracts in the same ballpark as other contract conferences.[133]

Grant of rights[edit]

Member schools granted their first and second tier sports media rights to the conference for the length of their current TV deals. The Grant of Rights (GOR) deal with the leagues' TV contracts ensures that "if a Big 12 school leaves for another league in the next 13 years, that school's media rights, including revenue, would remain with the Big 12 and not its new conference."[134]

GOR is seen by league members as a "foundation of stability" and allowed the Big 12 to be "positioned with one of the best media rights arrangements in collegiate sports, providing the conference and its members unprecedented revenue growth, and sports programming over two networks." All members agreed to the GOR and later agreed to extend the initial 6 year deal to 13 years to correspond to the length of their TV contracts.[135]

Prior to this agreement, the Big Ten and Pac-12 also had similar GOR agreements.[136] The Big 12 subsequently assisted the ACC in drafting its GOR agreement.[137] Four of the five major conferences now have such agreements, with the SEC the only exception.

Tier 3 events[edit]

The Big 12 is the only major conference that allows members to monetize TV rights for tier 3 events.[citation needed] This allows individual Big 12 member institutions to create tier 3 deals that include TV rights for a certain number of football and basketball games as well as other sports. The unique arrangement potentially allows Big 12 members to remain some of college sports' highest revenue earners. Other conferences' cable deals are subject to value reductions based on how people acquire cable programming, Big 12 schools tier 3 deals are exempt. Big 12 members individual existing and pending tier 3 deals are expected to bring in an additional $300 to $400 million over their life.[138] UT alone will earn more than $150 Million of that total from their Longhorn Network.[139]

Revenue[edit]

Original Big 12 Conference logo, 1996-2004

Conference revenue comes mostly from television contracts, bowl games, the NCAA, merchandise, licensing and conference-hosted sporting events. The Conference distributes revenue annually to member institutions.[143] From 1996 to 2011, 57 percent of revenue was allotted equally; while 43 percent was based upon the number of football and men's basketball television appearances and other factors.[144][145] In 2011 the distribution was 76 percent equal and 24 percent based on television appearances. Changing the arrangement requires a unanimous vote; as a Big 12 member, Nebraska had withheld support for more equitable revenue distribution.[144]

With this model, larger schools can receive more revenue because they appear more often on television. In 2006, for example, Texas received $10.2 million, 44% more than Baylor University's $7.1 million.[146]

Big 12 revenue is generally less than other BCS conferences; this was due in part to television contracts signed with Fox Sports Net (four years for $48 million) and ABC/ESPN (eight years for $480 million).[147]

In 2011, the Big 12 announced a new 13-year media rights deal with Fox that would ensure that every Big 12 home football game is televised, as well as greatly increasing coverage of women's basketball, conference championships and other sports.[148] The deal, valued at an estimated $1.1 billion, runs until 2025.[149] In 2012, the conference announced a new ESPN/FOX agreement, replacing the current ABC/ESPN deal, to immediately increase national media broadcasts of football and increase conference revenue;[150] the new deal was estimated to be worth $2.6 billion through the 2025 expiration.[151] The two deals pushed the conference per-team payout to approximately $20 million per year, while separating third-tier media rights into separate deals for each school; such contracts secured an additional $6 million to $20 million per school annually.[152]

Revenue ranking[edit]

Revenue includes ticket sales, contributions and donations, rights/licensing, student fees, school funds and all other sources including TV income, camp income, food and novelties. Total expenses includes coaching/staff, scholarships, buildings/ground, maintenance, utilities and rental fees and all other costs including recruiting, team travel, equipment and uniforms, conference dues and insurance costs. Net profit is calculated using total revenue and total expenses data provided by USA Today, individual institutions and the United States Department of Education.[153]

2012 Conference Rank 2012 National Rank Institution 2012 Total Revenue from Athletics[154] 2012 Total Expenses on Athletics[154] 2011 Average Spending per student-athlete[155]
1 1 University of Texas at Austin $163,295,115 $138,269,710 $248,951
2 9 University of Oklahoma $106,456,616 $96,250,328 $163,259
3 22 Oklahoma State University $87,270,598 $96,782,619 $133,341
4 28 West Virginia University $80,064,869 $92,968,960 $108,643
5 38 University of Kansas $70,228,913 $78,973,441 $127,656
6 40 Texas Tech University $67,928,350 $60,346,836 $103,021
7 43 Kansas State University $63,271,615 $50,994,785 $97,180
8 50 Iowa State University $55,151,017 $55,113,720 $99,528
Baylor University Not reported
(private university)
Not reported Not reported
Texas Christian University Not reported
(private university)
Not reported Not reported

Sports[edit]

The Big 12 Conference sponsors championship competition in ten men's and thirteen women's NCAA sanctioned sports.[156]

Teams in Big 12 Conference competition
Sport Men's Women's
Baseball
9
-
Basketball
10
10
Cross Country
9
10
Equestrian
-
4
Football
10
-
Golf
9
9
Gymnastics
-
3
Rowing
-
5
Soccer
-
9
Softball
-
7
Swimming & Diving
3
5
Tennis
6
10
Track and Field (Indoor)
9
10
Track and Field (Outdoor)
9
10
Volleyball
-
9
Wrestling
4
-

Men's sponsored sports by school[edit]

School Baseball Basketball Cross Country Football Golf Swimming
& Diving
Tennis Track & Field
(Indoor)
Track & Field
(Outdoor)
Wrestling Total Big 12 Sports
Baylor
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
8
Iowa State
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
7
Kansas
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
7
Kansas State
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
7
Oklahoma
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
9
Oklahoma State
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
9
TCU
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
9
Texas
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
9
Texas Tech
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
8
West Virginia
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
5
Totals
9
10
9
10
9
3
6
9
9
4

Men's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big 12 Conference which are played by Big 12 schools:

School Gymnastics Rifle* Soccer
Oklahoma Mountain Pacific Sports Federation No No
TCU No Patriot Rifle Conference No
West Virginia No Great America Rifle Conference Mid-American Conference
    • = Rifle is technically a men's sport, but men's, women's, and coed teams all compete against each other. TCU and West Virginia both field coed teams.

Women's sponsored sports by school[edit]

School Basketball Cross Country Equestrian Golf Gymnastics Rowing Soccer Softball Swimming
& Diving
Tennis Track & Field
(Indoor)
Track & Field
(Outdoor)
Volleyball Total Big 12 Sports
Baylor
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
10
Iowa State
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
11
Kansas
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
11
Kansas State
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
9
Oklahoma
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
11
Oklahoma State
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
9
TCU
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
10
Texas
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
11
Texas Tech
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
9
West Virginia
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Red XN
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
10
Totals
10
10
4
9
3
5
9
7
5
10
10
10
9

All Big 12 rowing schools are also affiliate members of Conference USA for that sport. The Big 12 conducts its own rowing championship, and its rowing schools also participate in the C-USA championship.[157]

Women's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big 12 Conference which are played by Big 12 schools:

School Rifle*
TCU Patriot Rifle Conference
West Virginia Great America Rifle Conference
  • Rifle is technically a men's sport, but men's, women's, and coed teams all compete against each other. TCU and West Virginia both field coed teams.

Football[edit]

The first football game in conference play was the 1996 Texas Tech vs. Kansas State football game, won by Kansas State, 21–14.[158]

From 1996–2010, Big 12 Conference teams played eight conference games a season. Each team faced all five opponents within its own division and three teams from the opposite division. Inter-divisional play was a "three-on, three-off" system, where teams would play three teams from the other division on a home-and-home basis for two seasons, and then play the other three foes from the opposite side for a two-year home-and-home.[citation needed]

This format came under considerable criticism, especially from Nebraska and Oklahoma, who were denied a yearly match between two of college football's most storied programs.[citation needed] The Nebraska-Oklahoma rivalry was one of the most intense in college football history.[citation needed] (Until 2006, the teams had never met in the Big 12 Championship.) Due to the departure of Nebraska and Colorado in 2011, the Big 12 eliminated the divisions (and championship game) and instituted a nine-game round-robin format.[citation needed]

Championship game[edit]

The Big 12 Championship Game was held each year. The game was approved by all members except Nebraska.[159] The championship game pitted the division champions against each other after the regular season was completed. The first match was held during the 1996 season at the Trans World Dome in St. Louis.

Following the 2008 game, a decision was made to move the game to the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The 2009 and 2010 games were played there, with the Sooners defeating the Cornhuskers 23–20.[160]

In 2010, the game moved to Arlington for 2011, 2012, and 2013.[161] This became moot following the 2010 season because the league lacked sufficient members.[162]

2013 Bowl games[edit]

Pick

Name[163]

Location Opposing conference Opposing pick
1 Fiesta Bowl Glendale, Arizona BCS
2 AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic Arlington, Texas SEC Big 12 #2
3 Valero Alamo Bowl San Antonio, Texas Pac-12 Big 12 #3
4 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Tempe, Arizona Big Ten Big 12 #4
5 Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl San Diego, California Pac-12 Big 12 #5
6 Texas Bowl Houston, Texas Big Ten Big 12 #6
7 New Era Pinstripe Bowl Bronx, New York American Big 12 #7

Rivalries[edit]

Rivalries (primarily in football) mostly predate the conference. The Kansas-Missouri rivalry was the longest running, the longest west of the Mississippi and the second longest in college football. It was played 119 times before Missouri left the Big 12. As of October 2012, the University of Kansas' athletic department had not accepted Missouri's invitations to play inter-conference rivalry games, putting the rivalry on hold. Sports clubs sponsored by the two universities continued to play each other.[164] The Oklahoma-Texas rivalry was a major rivalry decades before they were both in the conference.

Some of the longstanding football rivalries between Big 12 schools include:

Rivalry Name Trophy Games
played
Began
Baylor–TCU The Revivalry 109 1899
Baylor–Texas 103 1901
Baylor–Texas Tech Texas Farm Bureau Insurance Shootout 72 1929
Iowa State–Kansas State Farmageddon 94 1917
Kansas–Kansas State Sunflower Showdown Governor's Cup 111 1902
Oklahoma–Oklahoma State Bedlam Series Bedlam Bell 103 1904
Oklahoma–Texas Red River Showdown Golden Hat 105 1900
TCU–Texas Battle of the Horns 82 1897
TCU–Texas Tech The West Texas Championship 54 1926
Texas–Texas Tech Chancellor's Spurs 60 1928

Rivalries with former members:

Rivalry Name Trophy Games
played
Began Last Meeting
Baylor–Texas A&M Battle of the Brazos 108 1899 2011
Colorado–Nebraska 69 1898 2010
Iowa State–Missouri Telephone Trophy[165] 104 1896 2011
Kansas–Missouri Border War Indian War Drum[165] 119 1891 2011
Missouri–Nebraska Victory Bell 104 1892 2010
Missouri–Oklahoma Tiger–Sooner Peace Pipe 95 1902 2011
Nebraska–Oklahoma 86 1912 2010
Texas A&M–Texas Tech 68 1927 2011
Texas–Texas A&M Lone Star Showdown Lone Star Showdown Trophy 118 1894 2011

Men's basketball[edit]

From 1996–2011, standings in conference play were not split among divisions, although the schedule was structured as if they were. Teams played a home-and-home against teams within their "division"s and a single game against teams from the opposite division for a total of 16 conference games. This denied Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, formerly in the Big Eight, two rivalry games per season, but did allow most of the other traditional rivalries to be played home-and-home. After Nebraska and Colorado left, Big 12 play transitioned to an 18-game, double round robin schedule, allowing Oklahoma and Oklahoma State to once again play their rivals twice each season, in addition to adding second annual games to lucrative, nationally prominent series such as Texas-Kansas.[166]

Conference champions[edit]

Kansas has the most Big 12 titles, winning or sharing the regular-season title 14 times in the league's 18 seasons. The 2002 Jayhawks became the first, and so far only, team to complete an undefeated Big 12 regular season, going 16–0. Following the 2014 season, Kansas had won or shared 10 straight regular-season league titles and 12 of the past 13.

Season Regular Season Champion
Record
Tournament
Champion
1997 Kansas 15–1 Kansas
1998 Kansas 15–1 Kansas
1999 Texas 13–3 Kansas
2000 Iowa State 14–2 Iowa State
2001 Iowa State 13–3 Oklahoma
2002 Kansas 16–0 Oklahoma
2003 Kansas 14–2 Oklahoma
2004 Oklahoma State 14–2 Oklahoma State
2005 Oklahoma
Kansas 12–4
Oklahoma State
2006 Texas
Kansas 13–3
Kansas
2007 Kansas 14–2 Kansas
2008 Texas
Kansas 13–3
Kansas
2009 Kansas 14–2 Missouri
2010 Kansas 15–1 Kansas
2011 Kansas 14–2 Kansas
2012 Kansas 16–2 Missouri
2013 Kansas
Kansas State 14-4
Kansas
2014 Kansas 14-4 Iowa State

In 2005, Oklahoma won the post-season tournament seeding tiebreaker over Kansas based on its 71–63 victory over the Jayhawks.

In 2006, Texas won the post-season tournament seeding tiebreaker over Kansas based on its 80–55 victory over the Jayhawks.
In 2008, Texas won the post-season tournament seeding tiebreaker over Kansas based on its 72–69 victory over the Jayhawks.
In 2013, Kansas won the post-season tournament seeding tiebreaker over Kansas State based on its 59-55 victory in Manhattan and 83-62 win in Lawrence.

NCAA tournament performance[edit]

School Appearances Final Fours Championships
Baylor 7 2 0
Iowa State 15 1 0
Kansas 42 14 3
Kansas State 27 4 0
Oklahoma 28 4 0
Oklahoma State 25 6 2
TCU 7 0 0
Texas 30 3 0
Texas Tech 8 0 0
West Virginia 25 2 0

All time[edit]

School Year Started All Time Ws All Time Ls All Time Win %
Baylor 1907 1,215 1,303 .483
Iowa State 1908 1,240 1,252 .498
Kansas 1899 2,101 812 .721
Kansas State 1903 1,536 1,077 .588
Oklahoma 1907 1,560 1,006 .608
Oklahoma State 1909 1,556 1,082 .590
TCU 1908 1,121 1,308 .462
Texas 1906 1,674 997 .627
Texas Tech 1925 1,296 1,028 .558
West Virginia 1904 1,634 1,024 .615

Cumulative records[edit]

School Conf Ws Conf Ls Conf W % Total Ws Total Ls Total W %
Baylor 98 178 .355 279 245 .532
Colorado 95 145 .396
Iowa State 123 153 .446 311 232 .573
Kansas 231 45 .837 505 104 .829
Kansas State 125 151 .453 311 225 .580
Missouri 139 119 .539
Nebraska 97 143 .404
Oklahoma 164 112 .594 370 184 .668
Oklahoma State 158 118 .572 371 189 .663
TCU 2 16 .111 11 21 .344
Texas 183 93 .663 390 184 .679
Texas A&M 98 160 .380
Texas Tech 101 175 .366 273 261 .511
West Virginia 6 12 .333 13 19 .406

Conference records do not include conference tournament games, only regular season conference games

Baseball[edit]

The top 8 teams compete in the conference tournament at the conclusion of each season. Iowa State has not sponsored baseball since dropping its intercollegiate program after the 2001 season.[citation needed]

By school[edit]

School Appearances W-L Pct Tourney Titles Title Years
Baylor 16 25–26 .490 0
Iowa State 1 1–2 .333 0
Kansas 7 9–7 .563 1 2006
Kansas State 7 9–11 .450 0
Missouri 13 22–19 .536 1 2012
Nebraska 10 28–10 .737 4 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005
Oklahoma 16 27–24 .529 2 1997, 2013
Oklahoma State 15 11–29 .275 1 2004
TCU 1 1–2 .333 0
Texas 13 26–22 .542 4 2002, 2003, 2008, 2009
Texas A&M 13 24–18 .571 3 2007, 2010, 2011
Texas Tech 12 14–21 .400 1 1998
West Virginia 1 2–1 .667 0

Facilities[edit]

School Football stadium Capacity Basketball arena Capacity Baseball stadium Capacity
Baylor Floyd Casey Stadium
McLane Stadium (2014)
50,000[168]
45,000
Ferrell Center 10,284 Baylor Ballpark 5,000
Iowa State Jack Trice Stadium 55,000[169] Hilton Coliseum 14,384 Non-baseball school*
Kansas Memorial Stadium 50,071[170] Allen Fieldhouse 16,300 Hoglund Ballpark 2,500
Kansas State Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium 50,000[171] Bramlage Coliseum 12,528 Tointon Family Stadium 2,000
Oklahoma Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium 82,112[172] Lloyd Noble Center 12,000 L. Dale Mitchell Baseball Park 3,180
Oklahoma State Boone Pickens Stadium 60,218[173] Gallagher-Iba Arena 13,611 Allie P. Reynolds Stadium 3,821
Texas Darrell K Royal–Texas Memorial Stadium 100,119[174] Frank Erwin Center 16,540 UFCU Disch-Falk Field 6,649
TCU Amon G. Carter Stadium 45,000 Daniel-Meyer Coliseum 7,201 Lupton Stadium 4,500
Texas Tech Jones AT&T Stadium 60,862[175][176][177][178] United Spirit Arena 15,098 Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park 4,528
West Virginia Mountaineer Field 60,000[179] WVU Coliseum 14,000[180] Hawley Field 1,500[181]

*Iowa State discontinued its participation in baseball as an NCAA-recognized activity following the 2001 season.[182] It participates in club baseball as a member of the National Club Baseball Association. Games are played at Cap Timm Field, capacity 3,000.[183]

National championships[edit]

The following is a list of all NCAA, equestrian, and college football championships won by teams that were representing the Big 12 Conference in NCAA-recognized sports at the time of their championship.[18]

Football (3):
1997 – Nebraska
2000 – Oklahoma
2005 – Texas

Equestrian (13):
2002 − Texas A&M (Overall)
2003 − Oklahoma State (Western)
2004 − Oklahoma State (Western)
2005 − Texas A&M (Western)
2006 − Oklahoma State (Western)
2007 − Texas A&M (Western)
2009 − Texas A&M (Western)
2010 − Texas A&M (Western)
2011 − Texas A&M (Western)
2012 – Texas A&M (Overall)
2012 – Baylor (Hunter)
2012 – Texas A&M (Western)
2013 – Oklahoma State (Western)

Baseball (2):
2002 – Texas
2005 – Texas

Men's Basketball (1):
2008 – Kansas

Women's Basketball (3):
2005 – Baylor
2011 – Texas A&M
2012 – Baylor

Women's Bowling (5):
1999 – Nebraska
2001 – Nebraska
2004 – Nebraska
2005 – Nebraska
2009 – Nebraska

Men's Cross Country (6):
2001 – Colorado
2004 – Colorado
2006 – Colorado
2009 – Oklahoma State
2010 – Oklahoma State
2012 – Oklahoma State

Women's Cross Country (2):
2000 – Colorado
2004 – Colorado

Men's Golf (4):
2000 – Oklahoma State
2006 – Oklahoma State
2009 – Texas A&M
2012 – Texas

Rifle (2):
2013 – West Virginia
2014 – West Virginia

Men's Gymnastics (5):
2002 – Oklahoma
2003 – Oklahoma
2005 – Oklahoma
2006 – Oklahoma
2008 – Oklahoma

Women's Indoor Track (3):
1998 – Texas
1999 – Texas
2006 – Texas

Men's Outdoor Track (3):
2009 – Texas A&M
2010 – Texas A&M
2011 – Texas A&M

Women's Outdoor Track (7):
1998 – Texas
1999 – Texas
2005 – Texas
2009 – Texas A&M
2010 – Texas A&M
2011 – Texas A&M
2013 – Kansas

Men's/Women's Skiing (4):
1998 – Colorado
1999 – Colorado
2006 – Colorado
2011 – Colorado

Softball (2):
2000 – Oklahoma
2013 – Oklahoma

Men's Swimming (5):
1996 – Texas
2000 – Texas
2001 – Texas
2002 – Texas
2010 – Texas

Men's Tennis (1):
2004 – Baylor

Women's Volleyball (3):
2000 – Nebraska
2006 – Nebraska
2012 – Texas

Wrestling (4):
2003 – Oklahoma State
2004 – Oklahoma State
2005 – Oklahoma State
2006 – Oklahoma State

National team titles by institution[edit]

The national championships listed below are as of June 2013. Football, Helms, pre-NCAA competition and equestrian titles are included in the total, but excluded from the column listing NCAA and AIAW titles.

Big 12 National Championships
School Total titles Titles as a member
of the Big 12
NCAA and AIAW titles[18] Notes
Oklahoma State 55 13 51 OSU has 4 equestrian titles
Texas 50 15 46 UT has 9 recognized football titles, but claim 4 and 4 AIAW titles
Oklahoma 27 8 20 OU has 17 recognized NCAA football titles, but claims 7
West Virginia 20 2 17 WVU has 3 pre-NCAA rifle titles
Iowa State 18 0 18 ISU has 5 AIAW titles
Kansas 13 2 11 KU has 2 Helms basketball titles
TCU 5 0 3 TCU has 1 recognized football title and 1 equestrian title
Baylor 4 3 3 BU has 1 equestrian title
Texas Tech 1 0 1
Kansas State 0 0 0

Conference champions[edit]

The Conference sponsors 23 sports, 10 men's and 13 women's.[184]

In football, divisional titles were awarded based on regular-season conference results, with the teams with the best conference records from the North and South playing in the Big 12 Championship Game from 1996–2010. Baseball, basketball, softball, tennis and women's soccer titles are awarded in both regular-season and tournament play. Cross country, golf, gymnastics, swimming and diving, track and field, and wrestling titles are awarded during an annual meet of participating teams. The volleyball title is awarded based on regular-season play.[citation needed]

Conference titles by school[edit]

As of March 31, 2014. List includes both regular-season, tournament titles, and co-championships. List does not include conference championships won prior to the formation of the Big 12 Conference in 1996.[185]

Current members[edit]

  • Texas – 137 (144 including 7 football division championships)[185]
  • Oklahoma – 59 (67 including 8 football division championships)[185]
  • Baylor – 54 [185]
  • Oklahoma State – 55 (56 including 1 football division championship)[185]
  • Kansas – 31 (32 including 1 football division championship)[185]
  • Iowa State – 16 (17 including 1 football division championship)[185]
  • Kansas State – 14 (18 including 4 football division championships)[185]
  • Texas Tech – 14 (15 including 1 football division championship)[185]
  • West Virginia – 4[185]
  • TCU – 0[185]

Former members[edit]

  • Nebraska – 71 (80 including 9 football division championships)[185]
  • Texas A&M – 61 (64 including 3 football division championships)[185]
  • Colorado – 27 (31 including 4 football division championships)[185]
  • Missouri – 10 (12 including 3 football division championships)[185]

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External links[edit]