ASU’s athletic home, the Pac-12 conference, has been under fire the past couple of years for many different reasons.
From financial troubles to TV ratings, to only getting two teams into the college football playoff in the last eight seasons, the conference has been looked down upon by the other powerhouses. More bad news broke Thursday for the Pac-12 when USC and UCLA announced they would be moving to the Big 10 conference.
The California schools are set to join the conference made up of mostly Midwestern universities, with the goal to be officially moved by 2024.
One of the reasons behind the move is media revenue for the schools, and a rumor saying USC and UCLA could double their current revenue by moving. This get by the Big 10 seems like the start, with the conference eying to add more and bring their total to 16 teams.
With the move of two juggernaut schools, where does this leave Arizona State, and are they expected to make a move?
Although the Pac-12 still has Oregon, Washington, and Stanford as their “Top Tier” schools, Arizona State might be in the next wave of schools to depart.
Arizona State being a middle-of-the-pack school actually helps them in this situation, as conferences love adding teams like this to their portfolio with the thought of adding “depth”. The talk and sometimes gripe towards a conference like the SEC is that the conference is so top-heavy with giants like Alabama and Georgia, and everything below them is sub-par in comparison. Adding average to above-average teams over one blue blood school brings more value.
The move that makes the most sense for ASU if they were thinking that route is the Big 12. The Big 12, unlike the SEC and now the Big 10, is the only major conference with less than 16 teams. And with the Big 12 expanding already with BYU, UCF, Cincinnati, and Houston, Arizona State among other schools should join in on the fun.
The future of the Pac-12
The announcement from USC and UCLA are expected to come soon, and this may be the first domino out West to fall.
Will this make new Pac-12 conference commissioner George Kliavkoff light a fire under himself and make changes within the conference to ensure schools stay or does this mean more schools leave and thus making Kliavkoff add smaller schools to fill out the holes?
Either way, a huge move in the college landscape happened, and Arizona State will reap the rewards or feel the negative effects from it soon to come.