What Should University of Texas Do?

Last Updated on September 9, 2011

I love to ask you all “What would you do…?” questions on Fridays. I’ve never done a poll before, so I thought this would be fun. If you want to elaborate on your answer, feel free to use the comments section of this post.


  • Kristi Dosh

    Kristi A. Dosh is the founder of BusinessofCollegeSports.com and has served as a sports business analyst and contributor for outlets such as Forbes, ESPN, SportsBusiness Journal, Bleacher Report, SB Nation and more. She is also the author of a book on the business of college football, Saturday Millionaires. Kristi is a sought-after consultant and speaker on topics related to the business of college sports and a former practicing attorney. Click to learn more

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  • Zach
    September 9, 2011

    I think they need to try to stay with OU, OSU and Tech. The power is in the numbers for all of them.

  • Curtis George
    September 9, 2011

    Need to stay in the Big 12 while the LHN matures and gains distribution. If/when the Big 12 crumbles, a stronger LHN gives Texas greater leverage when the dust settles.

    • Elisa
      May 20, 2012

      Here is a comment from a Mizzou alum livnig in Atlanta (where the SEC championship game is every year). Like the Big 12, Mizzou football will generally be in the middle of the SEC pack with some really good years and some off years. Just like everywhere, SEC schools go up and down; FLA won natl titles, is now down. Check out ALA during the Shula years. TN is down. Auburn won last year but is middle of pack this year. GA is only ok this year and hasn’t won big for many years; Mizzou has been more highly rated more recently. I would predict Mizzou will compete about like Ark does or better. If you look at the list of schools above and by the way also Nebraska, alot depends on the coach and his ability to get the program to perform to its fullest potential.The big change for Mizzou will be the ability to recruit in SEC markets GA, FLA etc are football hotbeds and the outliers (Ark, LSU, MSU, SC etc) all recruit heavily and successfully out of these areas. Plus w A&M in SEC, TX will remain a good recruiting area. With the large populations already in the State, Mizzou has the chance to really improve its football program.Finally, the point about instability in the Big 12 is a good one. TX is not a teamplayer. OU wants out but can’t get out because tied to OSU. Not a good long term situation. I also agree that Mizzou has undoubtedly fully tested the Big 10 and its not in the cards. The SEC is a very good alternative and Mizzou will prosper.

  • I need an option for “Die in a Fire.” Gig’em

    • John
      September 9, 2011

      At least the fire would be lit

  • Rodney Fort
    September 9, 2011

    Why no “Join the SEC” option?

    • frug
      September 10, 2011

      Because UT has spurned SEC inquiries for two decades and have made clear they have not interest in any conferences besides the Big Xii, PAC-1X and the Big 10.

  • Lary
    September 9, 2011

    I think they should stay in the Big 12 (I mean Big 10 . . . er . . . I mean the Big 9). The grass is not always greener. Besides there is something to be said for being the big fish in a medium sized pond (the Big 12) as opposed to be a mid-sized fish in a very large pond (the PAC 16).

  • Kevin
    September 9, 2011

    First let me say that this blog is fantastic. As a trial lawyer, it is awesome to see the tactics I use every day in one of my favorite settings, college athletics. The question of what Texas should do is very interesting with a large spectrum of lenses to look through.

    Regardless of where Texas ends up, it (using the term “it” like Texas is a corporation, which I’m sure it would appreciate) needs to keep an eye on its luggage to make sure it’s carryon TV network remains a carry-on. If Texas is not careful, and falls in love with their network and allows it to grow too large, they may find themselves without a date to the party. I would compare it to the buddy that everybody in the group likes but never invites over because they all hate his girlfriend.

    Surely Texans will respond with, “Yeah, but our girlfriend is hot, and we don’t need your lame parties.” But careful Texas, because you do. For reasons clearly stated in a post a few days ago, the allure of independency may not be as attractive at second glance. Texas may have a great TV contract which provides even more exposure than Texas already had (and more money than it already had) but there is something to be said about true college rivalries. There is something about lining up against an arch rival over a history that extends back to the forefathers. Knowing that you will get one shot every year, no matter the team ranks or location of the game, where either team has an equal chance of winning.

    As a KU homer, people often ask my feelings on K-State. My response is always the same. “We dislike K-State, we HATE Missouri.” Couldn’t the same be said for the Red River Rivalry? Sure the two could lineup every year in a non-con game, but non-con’s (rightfully or wrongfully) always attribute the feel of pre-season games. One need not look farther than South Bend. The Irish’s you know what of a girlfriend surely makes every conference think just a little longer and a little harder about offering an invitiation. I’m not saying that the Irish would never be invited to any conference because that would be ignorant. But the Irish have also had some obismal seasons as of late and their tv deal has remained in check as a result. It would also be hard to argue that the USC Notre Dame rivalry hasn’t lost a little of its luster as well.

    Texas needs to think big picture. If it allows LHN to grow too large, by the time superconference realignment happens (and rest assured, it will), Texas may be left with no other option but to convince itself it has done the right thing by remaining independent. “Your parties are lame” now becomes “Our girlfriend is so hot, that we never need to go any other party again for the rest of our lives.” You need to go to parties Texas, just ask Notre Dame what its like not to have an automatic bid to a BCS bowl, or an invitation to the party.

  • iakobos
    September 9, 2011

    I’m really not sure what t.u. should do. Get off of their high horse maybe?

    I’m pretty sure that when the Big 12 stayed together last year they never thought A&M would bolt to the SEC once they got the LHN. Since ditching the LHN would be required to join any other conference I don’t see where that game plan ever figured into their thinking. That leaves them with the option of trying to keep the Big 12 together, if they can, or going Independent. As for keeping the Big 12 together, it really boils down to what OU does. If OU goes, so does OSU. Texas Tech will be looking to leave too and that doesn’t leave much of a conference for t.u. to keep together. Frankly, I think the Big 12’s days are numbered. If the Big 12 does dissolve, I’d advise t.u. to quit being such a prima donna, ditch the LHN and join the Pac-12.

    Or if they’re willing to forgo the LHN, why not the SEC? I know the SEC wants schools from different states but Texas (the state) is huge. They’d be a good fit in the SEC. Culturally and academically they line up with, or are ahead of, all the other SEC schools. The only thing the SEC would have to put up with is sometimes, though not always, the open hostility between A&M and t.u. (And yes, we Aggies always spell it t.u.) Considering the amount of money t.u. would bring to the conference, adding them is pretty much a no-brainer, if you can get them to stay in their place. Good luck with that. Maybe on second thought it’s not such a good idea.

    One last thought. At this point because of the LHN, I foresee t.u. going independent. However, I think they would eventually wind up like Notre Dame, a shadow of their former football selves. Speaking altruistically that would be a shame. Speaking as an Aggie I kind of relish the idea. Gig’em

  • Alex
    September 10, 2011

    One option you left out was, “Go to hell!” LOL!

    BYU Beat the Hell outa tu!

  • Ritzcoog
    September 11, 2011

    UT is a cancer of college football. What’s the common denominator in the following: 1 – Old SWC broken apart, 2 – Nebraska leaves Big 12, 3 – Colorado leaves the Big 12, – Texas A&M leaves the Big 12 ? Answer : UT. Selfishness, self importance and arrogance are destructive to society. UT should go independent at least so they can’t be voted worst conference mate annnually.

    • iakobos
      September 11, 2011

      Speaking as a former student who was enrolled at A&M during the demise of the SWC, I wouldn’t blame tu for it. The fact is A&M was the dominant football school in the last years of the SWC. By then UA had left and that made the SWC a Texas conference with no national following and a greatly diminished stature in the national rankings. Consequently, A&M wanted to end the SWC and join with the Big 8 every bit as much as tu did.

      However, I agree that tu’s economic dominance of the Big 12 is the main factor in all the conference defections.

      • reem
        May 20, 2012

        Tom Love your columns and find you to be the most (if not only) usniabed sports writer at the OWH. That stated, your argument that Mizzou will be able to compete in the SEC in football is ridiculous. You refer to 2 games from 1975 and 1978 one of which MISSOURI LOST, for God’s sake as evidence?!? Come on. To say you are grasping at straws here is a HUGE understatement. You want to talk cyles and underachievers? Let’s talk Tennessee. Missouri simply doesn’t have a prayer of competing with the money, tradition, facilities, stadium, and passionate fan base of a school like Tennessee over the long (or even short) haul. Would theTigers beat Tennessee if they played this year? Most likely. Will Mizzou win a few upsets over the big boys now and again? Yes. Every team does. But will they post anything even approaching a winning record against Tennessee, Bama, Auburn, LSU, and Florida over the next 20 years? No way. Same goes for A&M and Georgia. Same probably goes for S Carolina and Arkansas. Mizzou will be lucky to compete at the level of Ole Miss. I’m not saying Missouri doesn’t have some fervent fans. But one truly down year or God forbid 2, and all the Johnny Come Lately Mizzou fans will drop the program like yesterday’s newspaper.

  • superdestroyer
    September 11, 2011

    IF UT-Austin goes independent, then were do all of their non-football sports team play. A football team can survive as an independent but what about the basketball teams or the baseball team?

    If UT-Austin goes independent, it’s football schedule would end up looking more like Navy’s schedule full of cream puffs and I-AA teams rather than Notre Dame’s schedule.

  • iakobos
    September 11, 2011

    “…what about the basketball teams or the baseball team?”
    The speculation is that the non-football programs would join a conference, such as the PAC-12, while the football program would be independent.

  • Trey
    September 12, 2011

    UTs Indy schedule would be nice… with 5 or 6 rivals like Rice A&M OU Arkansas Baylor/Tech, 3 others with indys like ND BYU Army/Navy 2 local creampuffs from CUSA, WAC or Sun Belt (UH/SMU/UTEP/UNT/TSU/UTSA) and 2 big games like Cal/UCLA/USC/Maryland/Ole Miss plus if they join a conference you could pencil in a game or two to replace a creampuff or a big game like ND and the BE do…

    ND’s is 6 rivalries Mich MSU Purdue USC Stanford Pitt, 2 indys Navy and soon BYU, a non AQ team, and 3-4 AQs (this years it’s USF/BC/Maryland/Wake).

    At the end of the day Texas and NDs schedule would be similar but ND’s would get the nod for playing both Michigan and USC every year while Texas just plays OU but the rest of it would be a wash…

    • superdestroyer
      September 12, 2011

      IF Oklahoma is playing in the Pac 14, they only have three non-conference games. Why would they want to schedule on of them against Texas in a neutral site. That would leave Oklahoma with six home games most years. That costs them money.

      Notre Dame plays home and home with their main rivalries. Notre Dame schedules the second tier AQ and the non-AQ in order to have 7 or more home games.

      Also, where does the UT Men’s basketball team end up playing. the big conferences are not doing to let them play (SEC, PAC-14, ACC, BIG 10). BYU threw its men’s basketball team under the bus in order to become independent. Would UT-Austin want to do the same thing in order to schedule more games again UNT/UTEP?

      • iakobos
        September 12, 2011

        I can give you three reasons why OU and tu would continue their neutral site rivalry.
        1. They make lots of TV revenue from that game.
        2. They game draws national attention which is good for recruiting.
        3. This is most important for OU, their roster is a whose who of Texas HS football players. I think it’s extremely unlikely they would give up the Red River Rivalry and not play in the DFW area where they do the bulk of their Texas recruiting.