The conference realignment feeding frenzy has gotten to the point where someone is gonna get hurt. peaking at an event in Lubbock, TX, TCU Athletic Director Chris Del Conte was heard saying that the Big 12 was so vibrant that it has “schools like Florida State, Clemson and Miami trying to get in."
There have been rumors for weeks that the new ACC media deal left some of the conference’s premier football members feeling shortchanged enough to start looking elsewhere. That was further fueled by 247Sports’ Florida State crew announcing that FSU and Clemson had informed the ACC that they were exploring options. That story remains unconfirmed. Today’s Morning Six Pack noted a story in which a CBS Sports reporter attempted to conflate a discussion between the Big 12 and Notre Dame on Olympic Sports with a full fledged courting of the storied football power.
People are stretching for stories and sooner or later, the credibility axe is going to fall on an overextended neck. So, when Del Conte issued his [ahem] “confirmation” that three of the biggest football powers in the ACC were scaling the walls of the Big 12, the innerwebs went BOOM.
“Not so fast” says Stefan Stevenson, the TCU beat writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Del Conte says he was referring to how the Big 12 had grown in stature since last year—when the 2011 realignment craze looked like it was about to gut the league—and was using the rumors of interest from ACC schools as an illustration of how things changed.
Whether you believe he’s simply walking back comments that accidentally provided the story-starved media with red meat or you believe he’s clarifying marks that were misunderstood doesn’t matter. What does matter is that in this hyper-reactive environment, doesn’t it make sense to wait until the suits call a presser before you rearrange the pieces on the board?