Alabama Football: Look for Texas and OU in the SEC for 2022 season

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

Alabama Football and the rest of the SEC will likely be adjusting its 2022 schedule. That is because it is looking more possible the Sooners and the Longhorns will join the SEC for the 2022 season.

Last week, when the two Big 12 teams to SEC story broke (probably leaked by Texas A&M) I wrote that the Aggies and perhaps a few other SEC teams might try to block the move. I was wrong, mostly because news discussions had been going since December had not become public. Instead of an implausibly rapid pace, it appears decision points had already been reached by Oklahoma and Texas before the news came out next week.

My (today) gut feel is the SEC will accept the twin applications for SEC membership, by 14-0 votes. Not able to gain another ‘no’ from another SEC school, the Aggies will rightly agree to an action they hate.

What will be left to work out is also progressing, though how it will end, and how long it will take, is not known. The key players now are lawyers. Media companies also have a say. As reported for CBS, by Dennis Dodd,

"Their TV contracts with ESPN and Fox contain language that allows the Big 12 networks to reduce payouts if there is a loss of membership.That means the Big 12 deal could drop from $37 million in annual revenue to as low as $9 million per school."

A conference game for Alabama Football in Austin?

Negotiations and lawyer wrangling could take weeks, even months. Subject to a new agreement between the Big 12 and Texas and Oklahoma, the two schools will pay a hefty price to exit in time for SEC play next season. There are many possible paths and conclusions to these disputes. Alabama football fans should not be surprised if next season’s scheduled trip to Austin becomes a conference game.

The Big 12 must reorganize or die. And it must do so quickly. How bad is the realignment for the remaining eight, Big 12 teams? In 2016, Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard said,

"The Big 12 exists because we have Texas and Oklahoma in the room. If we take Texas and Oklahoma out of the room, we’re the Mountain West Conference."

There is a strong subtext to all this, laid out by Dennis Dodd. I have no idea if Dodd is on track, but what he wrote is plausible. According to Dodd, this could be part of a bigger play by Greg Sankey and the SEC to untether from the NCAA. Will the SEC stop at 16 teams? What will the ACC, Big Ten and Pac 12 do? No one knows, but there could easily be a realignment shift involving eight or more teams.

Next. The Greatest Games in Crimson Tide History. dark

Alabama football fans wanting to follow every development should pay attention to three Big 12 schools. They are Oklahoma State, Iowa State and West Virginia. The Pac 12, the Big Ten and the ACC will be interested.