I touched last time on the detrimental side of conference realignment but concluded that it’s something Pac-12/college football fans will have to accept due to its apparent inevitability.
Well, perhaps that’s not the case anymore.
Pac-12 CEOs are now thought to be reconsidering this potential merger. And the new change of heart all revolves around academics.
Maybe- just maybe- there are more important things in this world than just money after all.
These fat cats atop the conference (but mostly Cal and Stanford) are worried about Oklahoma and Oklahoma State (who aren’t accredited members of the AAU) bringing down the conference’s reputation.
What’s the AAU you may ask?
Good question. In fact, I had to look it up myself. According to Wikipedia, the Association of American University is “an organization of leading research universities devoted to maintaining a strong system of academic research and education.”
More or less, it “judges the value of the academic research of the university in question”. And since these two aforementioned colleges don’t hold themselves up to this standard, why should they be worthy of the Holy Grail of all collegiate athletic conferences?
Well, of course this is
a little very hypocritical considering that the Pac-12, or the Pac-10 at the time, had no problem absorbing Utah, who aren’t AAU card holders.
Really, Cal and Stanford should be some of the more accepting parties of this monumental merger.
If the Pac-12 would absorb the Oklahoma schools plus Texas and Texas Tech, USC and UCLA would most likely slide over to the Pac-12 North and be reunited with their California school rivals, which could only help ticket sales.
Still, only time will tell as a vote is expected later this week.
And then maybe one of the age old questions will finally be answered: which is more important, education or sweet, sweet moolah?