I've used this picture at least 10 times since it was taken. At least. - Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE
According to Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, the conference is in active talks with the ACC and possibly others about "alliances" of some kind.
Here's the tweet that got things going this afternoon:
Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby says league is exploring alliance with ACC, two other leagues for scheduling, marketing, TV and bowls.
Bohls went on to say in subsequent tweets that he believes the Pac12 would almost certainly be involved in any arrangement that arose from the conversations, but Bowlsby stressed that nothing is imminent at the moment. When asked about the possibility of a move like this spurring further realignment, Bowlsby apparently intimated that the opposite was more likely, with this type of arrangement possibly stabilizing a fractured collegiate landscape. Somewhat hilariously, Bowlsby likened the potential conference affiliations to "being friends with benefits" (or something similar, I can't get Bohls' actual article to come up, but that's the phrase on twitter). I guess that means we could schedule the Pac12 in basketball (or football) and not have to buy a Valentine's Day present or meet their parents. That's probably good for us since UCLA and Cal weren't thrilled with our more religious upbringing.
Anyway, these comments are especially interesting since they came on the same day that the B1G's commissioner mentioned that his conference was looking closely at its options for future realignment (read: expansion). The B1G has long been rumored to be interested in getting to 16 schools and looking both eastward and into the midwest, but whether anything comes out of that is unclear at this point.
It should be noted that the Big 12 ADs are scheduled to meet his coming Monday and Tuesday. Realignment and everything around it are certain to be on the agenda, as will any movement in the direction Bowlsby spoke about today, I'm sure.
From what I'm seeing on twitter, it sounds like if the Big 12 is going to be playing makeout buddies with another conference, most seem to prefer to the Pac12 for whatever reason. I don't really have a preference, personally.
PS. This makes me think I need a Realignment hub. Can never get too many hubs, as I always say.