Thought I'd start off with a bang introducing myself with a post. I'm mikedrawjayhawk, and I'm a Jayhawk by the grace of God (hi mikedrawjayhawk!). '07 grad, stuck in the frozen north that is Detroit- Big 10 country. Unfortunately I don't have much insider info about the thoughts from the fans/media/conference honchos, but I do have some thoughts as a fan (have to give credit to a friend/Syracuse fan too). Been lurking for a while now, thought I'd use this as an excuse to speak up.
Regarding the conference realignment clusterjunk. It seems many of us are agreed that we will be left on the outside when the big boys decide to consolidate their powers. Unfortunately, I agree, as it seems the main reasons the conferences are wanting to consolidate include:
1. money (tv revenue)
None of which KU has in greater quantities than most of the schools mentioned for realignment. We don't have the academic affiliations nor the football pedigree to go to the Big 10, we don't have the media market to go to the PAC-10, and playing football in the SEC is suicide for us. So here's my proposal for keeping the Big 12 together:
(Assuming Misery and Nebraska go to the Big 10, and assuming the possibility that Colorado goes to the PAC-10. Rutgers doesn't affect us, and Notre Dame can ride their high horse into oblivion as far as I'm concerned)
BIG 12 NORTH
Colorado State? Memphis? Tulsa?
BIG 12 SOUTH
What we lose: St. Louis, Nebraska, and Denver markets, a schizophrenic Colorado athletics department (nobody seems too excited about getting/losing them anyway), conference matchups w/ Misery and NU, a guaranteed yearly matchup of OU-Texas, some pride and a little status.
What we gain: losing a schizophrenic Colorado, a stranglehold on the state of Oklahoma and more importantly Texas including the media market of Houston, more parity in the North-South matchups = more exciting games, a yearly basketball game with Memphis, a football powerhouse in TCU.
Yes, we're still overshadowed by the Big 3 media-wise, but that hasn't killed the Big 12 yet. Even if it's largely because of Texas and OU in football, and Texas and KU in basketball, we're always thought of as one of the top 3 conferences competitively. As long as we keep those major powers in play, maintain the rest of the league while building a media presence and better academic environment, the Big 12 won't be going anywhere.
Just some thoughts. Sorry for the length, but be gentle- it's my first time.