Sooners Staying in Big 12

NORMAN, Okla. — Just 28 hours after the OU Board of Regents gave President David L. Boren the power to explore conference options, a shockwave from out west shook all the way to the middle of the country: the Pac-12 will not expand at this time.

That means no OU to the Pac-12.

"We were not surprised by the Pac-12's decision to not expand at this time," Boren said in a statement he released. "Even though we had decided not to apply for membership this year, we have developed a positive relationship with the leadership of the conference and we have kept them informed of the progress we've been making to gain agreement from the Big 12 for changes which will make the conference more stable in the future.

"Conference stability has been our first goal and we look forward to achieving that goal through continued membership in the Big 12 Conference."

Whether it was the demands from OU earlier in the day that suggested it might stay if Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe was fired and the Longhorn Network was revised or it was simply Texas' power and the Pac-12 refusing to deal with it, the option is now off the table.

The focus likely shifts to expanding by one or three teams, with BYU, Louisville and West Virginia as the likely targets.

But that concept of stability that Boren has continuously talked about as the main thing he's looking for in a conference is still not a given simply by adding any of those three schools.

The issues of equality in the conference and quality leadership must be taken care of first.

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