Big 12 Conference Looking To Further Expand, As $440 Million Shared With Member Schools. Will Colorado-Deion Sanders Make The Jump?

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The Big 12 will look much different this time next year, but the conference is still raking in a junk of money for member schools. As Texas and Oklahoma prepare for its final season with the conference, the future continues to look bright for the conference. Will they add Deion Sanders and Colorado?

It was a bit strange seeing AD’s representing the Longhorns and Sooners at SEC meetings this week, but the Big 12 is still chugging along. Commissioner Brett Yormak announced on Friday that the league would be distributing $400 Million to its member institutions in the latest round of television payouts.

Now, with the addition on UCF, BYU, Cincinnati and Houston, the conference will continue to hold its own when it comes to revenue sharing. Thanks to an aggressive push to land a new television deal, the Big 12 is in good hands for the future. In total, the new deal with ESPN and FOX that starts in 2025, each school could receive up to $50 million per year in the $2.28 billion, six-year deal.

This is a nice jump from the $44 million each of the ten member schools will receive this year.

Will Colorado Make The Big 12 Jump? Conference Expanding Basketball?

The Deion Sanders era at Colorado has come at the perfect time for the school, as the Pac-12 continues to struggle finding a lucrative television home. Now, Colorado is looking at all its options in regards to potentially joining another conference. Over the past few months, officials from Colorado and the Big 12 have met in regards to what a future would look like for them in the Big 12.

Certainly the television market would be nice for the conference, but cashing in on the excitement in Boulder is one of the main objectives. Right now, Colorado is waiting to see what the Pac-12 can come up with, in terms of annual revenue from a media rights deal.

Deion Sanders, Colorado head football coach, flanked by CU Chancellor Phil DiStefano, left, and athletic director Rick George. (Photo by Helen H. Richardson/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Though the school is saying the right thing in terms of its status in the Pac-12, there is a good chance Colorado could join the Big 12 sooner rather than later.

“We are proud members of the Pac-12,” Colorado AD Rick George recently noted. “In a perfect world, we’d love to be in the Pac-12, but we also have to do what is right for Colorado at the end of the day.”

During a meeting with Big 12 commissioner Brett Yormark on Friday, he made it clear that the conference is also having great discussions about basketball expansion.

“We had a great discussion about expansion and have a plan,” Brett Yormark noted. “We have an appetite to be a national conference. We believe in upside of basketball..if opportunity presents itself to create value, we will pursue (expansion). It is a focus of ours.”

There have been reports that Gonzaga, UConn and Marquette could potentially join the conference, which would be massive additions on the basketball side.

Either way, it sounds like Brett Yormark is ready to add a few more teams to the Big 12.

Written by Trey Wallace

Trey Wallace is the host of The Trey Wallace Podcast that focuses on a mixture of sports, culture, entertainment along with his perspective on everything from College Football to the College World Series.

Wallace has been covering college sports for 15 years, starting off while attending the University of South Alabama. He’s broken some of the biggest college stories including the Florida football “Credit Card Scandal” along with the firing of Jim McElwin and Kevin Sumlin. Wallace also broke one of the biggest stories in college football in 2020 around the NCAA investigation into recruiting violations against Tennessee football head coach Jeremy Pruitt.

Wallace also appears on radio across seven different states breaking down that latest news in college sports.

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  1. I don’t know that I like the idea of “basketball-only” additions to the Big 12. UConn is the one that really makes no sense, since the Big East has the legacy branding and much larger media markets (NYC, Philadelphia, DC, Chicago) well represented compared to the Big 12. If you wanted to add UConn for all sports and not just basketball, that’s one thing, but if the reports are that UConn to the Big 12 is basketball only, then that makes next to no sense.

    My gut feeling is that if/when Colorado jumps to the Big 12, the Arizona schools and Utah will likely make the jump with Colorado. The CU Board of Trustees have an executive session scheduled for Tuesday – which may or may not be related to a potential move to the Big 12 – with a regular BoT meeting set for June 22-23. I wouldn’t be shocked if a move is announced at that time, should it happen.

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