SEC to Texas A&M: No thanks (for now)

By Adam Silverstein
August 14, 2011

Amid speculation that the Texas A&M Aggies had decided to join the Southeastern Conference and were simply waiting on approval from the league’s hierarchy, the SEC’s presidents and chancellors met on Sunday to discuss expansion and including Texas A&M in their league. University of Florida president and the chair of the SEC’s presidents and chancellors, Bernie Machen, released the following statement on behalf of the league at 4 p.m. Sunday afternoon:

“The SEC Presidents and Chancellors met today and reaffirmed our satisfaction with the present 12 institutional alignment. We recognize, however, that future conditions may make it advantageous to expand the number of institutions in the league. We discussed criteria and process associated with expansion. No action was taken with respect to any institution including Texas A&M.”

The short version: We have decided not to take action to expand our conference at this time but reserve the right to do so in the future. Take care of the odds and ends on your end and we will start this process over from the beginning.


  1. CeeThree says:

    words can’t describe how embarrassing this is, and A&M thought they didn’t like Texas before? Now they have to go crawling back while being pointed at and laughed at by everyone. Earnest Byner thinks this is a bad fumble. I think it’s hilarious. I’m also glad the SEC is staying at 12 (yes, “for now”).

  2. El Meester says:

    I actually think this is just the SEC covering it’s bases legally. Once they find a 14th team (through back channels), everything will fall into place rather quickly.

    I think TAMU asked the SEC to put this statement out so the BIG12 won’t take legal action against TAMU/SEC. Remember, it’s in the BIG12’s and Texas’ best monetary interest for the SEC to tamper…

  3. g8ter27 says:

    So where did all of this hype come from in the first place? I am fine with not having A&M or anyone else for that matter join the SEC but who brought this up to start with? If the SEC is staying put at 12 teams, great, but I wish they would stop all this talk about expanding every few months.

  4. SC_Gator says:

    I’d prefer the SEC stay at 12 as well but I still read this more as a statement to TAM to get their house in order before even thinking the SEC will have you. Above anything else the SEC doesn’t want to be the first to make a move here, for legal reasons.

  5. Tractorr says:

    Not to mention that the SEC is after bigger fish (Oklahoma). If OU thinks the Big 12 is about to collapse they will start listening to offers. When they realize that they would be making a lot more money in the SEC, with the new TV contract that is assuredly coming, they may not be able to justify staying put. Sure they compete now but a few years down the line when Texas has spent a bunch of that Longhorn Network money on new facilities it is going to be harder and harder to get the best talent out of the Lone Star state, which is where half of OU’s players come from.

  6. sean says:

    el meester is quite right. there’s a bit of legal jargon known as “tortious interference” – basically a third party (SEC) messing w/ someone else’s contract (TAMU/BigXII).

    Here’s a link from a Texas blogger that explains tortious interference:

    And, a nice little roadmap of how TAMU/SEC can avoid any tortious interference claims:

    And tractorr, in TV dollars, TAMU is definitely the bigger fish than OU, as the Texas markets it will add are HUGE.

    • Tractorr says:

      You are right that Texas A&M will bring in the Houston market, but OU brings in the entire state of Oklahoma. Plus Oklahoma is a larger national draw as they have always been in the National title picture for the last 10 years. Nobody but A&M fans are tuning in to see A&M play.

      • CH says:

        sean is correct here. The ONLY reason the SEC is considering A&M is because of the TV market they have. OU is a better school with better tradition, but A&M would put the SEC in one of the largest markets in the country. Its a win-win for both programs and depending on the 14th team, I’m all for it.

  7. Ken (CA) says:

    I can see TAMU and Va Tech both coming to the SEC, but I don’t see any reason why the SEC would want to do that unless they can renegotiate the current contracts. If not, they just have to share the same pie with 2 more people..

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