Big 12 News

Jamie Pollard on Possible Big 12 Expansion: ‘I Hope Everything Stays the Way It Is’

NCAA Football: Northern Iowa at Iowa State

Heartland College Sports owner Pete Mundo did an exclusive interview with Iowa State Athletic Director Jamie Pollard earlier this week and discussed some of the hotter topics in college athletics with the 18-year Big 12 AD.

Among other topics, the issue of conference realignment was discussed, with Pollard giving his insight on the Big 12’s position in the college landscape.

When asked his thoughts about the future of this league and what it might look like in 2025 and beyond, Pollard was confident that the Big 12 has all the stability it needs already.

 

“I think it’s really important for people to understand the Big 12 is gonna be fine,” Pollard said. “If it’s just the 12 of us, life is gonna be just fine and we are well positioned to have great success. [With the] new television deal, college football expansion coming with the playoff, the ability to have our teams play into that. We have the best basketball conference in the country and it only just got stronger with the addition of those four schools.”

With BYU, Cincinnati, Houston, and UCF coming aboard on July 1, the conference has given itself plenty of staying power in an incredibly unstable landscape, but it’s also positioned itself to be attractive to schools that might looking for a new home.

 

“What Commissioner Yormark has done has really been bold and aggressive about saying, ‘Here’s what the Big 12 has and we’re good,'” Pollard said. “Now, if stuff happens around us… we want [other schools] to look at the Big 12 as a possible destination.”

When Oklahoma and Texas leave for the SEC in 2024, the Big 12 will have 12 schools for the first time in a decade and a half, that is, unless the conference makes new additions. If you ask Pollard though, he hopes everything stays the way it is right now, as the prospect of having more teams in the Big 12 is exciting, but it would also be costly for the other side of the equation.

“Personally, I hope everything stays the way it is,” Pollard said. “I know the disruption that’s caused, both pro and negative, if there’s further realignment. I don’t wish that upon anybody — the administrators, the alums, the fans — because it’s usually at somebody’s expense.”

With July 30th being another de facto deadline for the Pac-12 media rights deal, it appears that the pressure out west is still mounting as the weeks pass. With rumors about Colorado already well-recorded, it seems a matter of time before more serious talks start to take place.

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