The Big 12 Conference appears to be moving ahead with expansion. The league is reportedly exploring adding four teams to expand from eight to 12 teams.
Also, in a report from The Athletic, the Big 12 has most seriously discussed adding BYU, UCF, Cincinnati and Houston. Those four programs are considered the leading contenders.
On Wednesday night, the Big 12 put together a statement that the league is set to move ahead with their eight teams and is “committed to furthering one of the nation’s premier athletic conferences”.
The full statement from commissioner Bob Bowlsby said, “Following two days of consultation with the athletics directors of the continuing members of the Big 12 Conference. The eight ADs remain committed to furthering the Big 12 as one of the nation’s premier athletic conferences, and look forward to working with our presidents and chancellors to strengthen the league. Future exploration by the group will continue to center on options that best position the long-term strength of the Conference.”
Big 12 presidents met last Friday morning and earlier this week held in-person meetings involving Big 12 athletics directors and media and television consultants.
The subcommittee includes Texas Tech AD Kirby Hocutt, Baylor AD Mack Rhoades, Kansas Chancellor Doug Girod and Iowa State President Wendy Wintersteen. This comes on the heels of the conference hiring Oliver Luck, the former West Virginia AD and XFL commissioner, as a consultant to help with the process.
As for timing, The Athletic adds also reports that expansion could move “faster than initially anticipated”, if there is a general consensus on which teams to invite.