Big Ten Considering Adding Four Pac-12 Schools, Including Cal And Stanford

We’re exactly one year away from the Big Ten officially adding USC and UCLA, but the conference does not appear to be slowing down as it has more Pac-12 schools on its radar.

The Big Ten is taking a preliminary look at the possibility of adding Washington, Oregon, Cal and Stanford from the Pac-12, Yahoo Sports reported Wednesday.

Washington and Oregon are the priority, if the conference opts to expand to 18 schools, but if it is to move to 20 teams, Cal and Stanford would be next up.

The discussions are reportedly in the very early stages and no decision is imminent.

The news of the potential expansion comes just two days after news broke that Colorado would be departing the Pac-12 for the Big 12, leaving the Pac-12 with just nine schools in 2024.

Pac-12 Schools As of 2024

  • Arizona (M/W swim & dive) – rumored to Big 12
  • Arizona State (M/W swim & dive) – rumored to Big 12
  • Cal (M/W swim & dive) – rumored to Big Ten
  • Oregon (No swim & dive) – rumored to Big Ten
  • Oregon State (No swim & dive)
  • Stanford (M/W swim & dive) – rumored to Big Ten
  • Utah (M/W swim & dive) – rumored to Big 12
  • Washington (No swim & dive) – rumored to Big Ten
  • Washington State (W swim & dive)
  • USC (M/W swim & dive)left for Big Ten
  • UCLA (W swim & dive)left for Big Ten
  • Colorado (No swim & dive)left for Big 12

However, that number was at risk of further dwindling even prior to today’s reports, with speculation that Arizona would follow Colorado to the Big 12 ramping up immediately after the Colorado news broke. Arizona State and Utah are also reported to be pondering making the jump.

If the Pac-12 does ultimately fall apart, the Big Ten adding a six-team West Coast flank “is a real possibility,” according to Yahoo Sports.

Sources also told Yahoo Sports‘ Dan Wetzel that the Big Ten may choose to wait and see what happens with the Big 12 and Arizona, ASU and Utah before making any decision on further expansion.

On Tuesday, Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff presented a media rights package to his membership that was reliant on games appearing on an Apple Tv+ subscription streaming service, with annual revenue estimates in the $20 million per school range.

The Pac-12’s value has dropped significantly since the announced departure of USC and UCLA last year, as they lost the Los Angeles media market and now remain without a rights deal beyond the 2023-24 campaign.

For context, Big Ten schools will receive a minimum of $50 million a year with games primarily appearing on linear television networks such as CBS, Fox and NBC. The Big 12 has a $31.7 million per year package per school.

If the Pac-12 does end up remaining together and need to add more schools, San Diego State (Mountain West Conference) and SMU (American Athletic Conference) have been linked as potential additions.

If Cal and Stanford did end up in the Big Ten, the Golden Bears would immediately become the conference’s top men’s swim & dive team as the two-time defending NCAA champions, while the Cardinal women, despite losing a massive name in Claire Curzan this week, would be the number one female program.

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Fark Wahar
4 months ago

We shoulda stayed the Pac-8, with the Washington, Oregon, and California schools only

4 months ago

Seems like this whole charade is ripe for an anti-trust case.

4 months ago

So power 3? SEC, Big 10, and Big12? Big12 swimming without texas feels more like identity crisis mid majors, so much funding and they still can’t really put it together, wish some of these admins cared more about swimming/olympic sport success

Reply to  HereForTheMems
4 months ago

Big Ten and SEC are in a good spot. Big 12 is in a better spot than it looked like it might be after the Texas/OU departure.

ACC is still sitting pat, but I don’t know how long that’s going to last. I think if they don’t make positive moves, they’re going to see negative moves.

Reply to  Braden Keith
4 months ago

ACC is still sitting pat, but I don’t know how long that’s going to last. I think if they don’t make positive moves, they’re going to see negative moves.

The issue with the ACC is whether or not the GOR holds. Everyone agrees GOR’s are the closest thing to unbreakable that exists in college sports, but they have never been challenged and the chair of FSU BOT’s just declared the GOR “will not be the document that keeps us from taking action”. Most likely they are just angling for a larger share of the conference revenue pie, but who knows.

As for positive moves, it is just hard to see any that make economic sense. The ACC has examined both… Read more »

Reply to  frug
4 months ago

Grant of rights can be broken. School would have to convince a judge or jury that something materially has changed that impacts college sports—can you say NIL. Also exit fee would easily beaten down to actual damages which would not be nearly the numbers in the contract which are punitive in nature and unenforceable. Long lawsuit ahead.

4 months ago

Honestly with the way things are going this is probably best case scenario for the athletes. Alternative is all the CA schools and PNW schools splitting up, at least in this case they can keep a meaningful number of conference meets/games on the west coast rather than traveling to PA or WV every week or whatever

4 months ago

What’s the point of even having conference championships anymore? Just have NCAAs.

Foreign Embassy
Reply to  Dmswim
4 months ago

It has nothing to do with swimming. All to do with football and basketball.

Just FYI
Reply to  Foreign Embassy
4 months ago

Basketball is barely a blip in what’s driving all this. It’s all football

Becky D
4 months ago

Big10 = Kaonashi

4 months ago

As a life long fan of the PAC-8,10,12 aka the Conference of Champions, this realignment of conferences is very sad and tragic. I absolutely hate it and it’s all about the money, nothing else. The decades and decades of great rivalries between the schools is being thrown out of the window and who knows what is going to happen next. More than some universities are going to get screwed in the process. What a mess this is going to be!

4 months ago

If Arizona state joins the big 12 they won’t have to do a double taper for ncaa, that could be scary

Justin Pollard
Reply to  Lol
4 months ago

No school needs to do a double taper if their swimmers are good enough to qualify for NCAAs w/ out a taper. Conference championships in the pac- 12, big 12 or any other have little to nothing to do with tapering twice; it’s all about qualifying swimmers for NCAAs and giving them the best chance to do well at that meet

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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