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Cavalcade Of Whimsy - Realignment Limbo
Posted Sep 20, 2011

Texas and Oklahoma have to finally decide what they want to do, the Big East's problems, and more, in the latest Cavalcade of Whimsy.

Cavalcade of Whimsy

Sept. 20, 2011

Past Cavalcades
- 2008 Season | 2009 Season | 2010 Season 
2011 Sept. 6 | Sept. 13 

- Part 2. The Irish Will Play For The BCS Title ... Soon 

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173 days since Stanley McClover's claims against Auburn, Ohio State, Michigan State, and LSU with no repercussions.

Sorry if this column sucks, it’s not my fault … I sent in my application to join the ACC, and it was accepted, but I can’t afford the $5 million buyout it takes to leave this column.

"Now I’m all verkelmpt … talk amongst yourselves … I’ll give you a topic. Grape-Nuts - it contains neither grapes, nor nuts. Discuss." … Probably as you’re reading this, the Big East will no longer be Big or in the East. Discuss.

“You know, that information might have been a little more useful to me YESTERDAY!!!” … How bad are things for the Big East? TCU might see a Mountain West with Boise State, Nevada, Fresno State, Air Force, and San Diego State as a more attractive option than a Big East with West Virginia, Louisville, South Florida, and possibly the dregs of the Big 12.

“Okay. Now, I know this is an important decision. Why don’t we all just sit down and talk about it? Come on, come on. Now, look, you both find each other attractive, right? Clearly, no one else can stand to be with either one of you … (Smiling, like a salesman) Alright. Now, what do I have to do to put you two in a relationship today?” … Texas and Oklahoma, really, it's time to decide.

It's time to stop getting your butt kissed, Texas. Oklahoma, it's time to realize that it's not a guarantee in any way that the Pac-12 will take you without Texas being along for the ride. And finally, it's time to finally decide whether or not the Big 12 is still viable.

Enough is enough. It's time to choose, it's time to pick a league, it's time to pick a direction, and it's time to finally shape what the future of college athletics will be. Too many schools are holding their breath, and it's not fair to the other Big 12 programs to keep them in limbo.

The big problem is that all the moving parts at Texas and OU don't seem to quite know what they want, and they don't seem to be able to gauge what it would mean to move. It's being lost on Texas and blown off by Oklahoma that they wouldn't be-all-end-all of a Pac-16. It might be too big an ego drop to simply be a part of a conference after living life as the anchor of the Big 12, and that's part of the reason why Mack Brown is saying that Texas should stay put.

The Big Ten is Michigan and Ohio State, the SEC is Alabama, and the Pac-12 is USC, even with the sanctions. Texas thinks it can waltz in with its swagger and its network and become the Pac-14 or 16’s center of the world, but that won’t happen without giving up money, power, and a bit of prestige. This would be more like Nebraska joining the Big Ten than Florida State joining the ACC.

Many Pac-12 schools aren't going to let the Longhorn Network exist without getting a piece of the pie, and Texas doesn't like being told what to do by anyone. Oklahoma, meanwhile, is hand in hand with Oklahoma State, and from all indications, Pac-12 schools really don't have any interest in OSU unless it's part of a huge package that brings Texas in the mix.

It's really not very hard. Either Texas is going to give some of the revenue to the little guys, or else the Big 12 is probably done. Oklahoma has to start getting a bigger piece of the pie, or it's going to try to bolt with Oklahoma State not far behind. No matter what happens, it's time to make a decision.

“Maybe it’s the beer talking, Marge, but you got a butt that won’t quit. They’ve got these chewy pretzels ...(mumbles)…five dollars? Get out of here.” … Texas has become the Kim Kardashian of the college sports world. It’s pretty, it can have anyone it wants, and it doesn’t have a problem being romantically linked to several big players.

It was reportedly seen hanging on the beach with the Big Ten before catching a late night bite with the SEC, and now, it’s being pictured making eyes with the hot new ACC before it possibly settles down with the Pac-12.

The sisters get plenty of publicity simply by being along for the ride. Texas A&M is the Khloé, needing a ton of makeup to hide that its understanding of the joy of a bacon double cheeseburger, and now it’s attaching itself to a star that could’ve ended up with someone far more attractive.

Oklahoma is the Kourtney, who’s pretty enough to be in the same league as Kim, but can’t quite achieve the same level of stardom and is way too closely tied in with the Scott of the Big 12, Oklahoma State.

“Don't you know the man's about business? Move, (bleep). Move, punk. Move. Y'all be the (bleep) quiet.” … Remember, this is a business story and not a sports story. It’s about numbers, it’s about dollars, and it’s about fan bases, and while a good sports program might bring in more of all three for the short haul, conferences are thinking long term and they want the big programs.

This is also a story about how the big guys are squeezing out the little guys, and they’re finally cutting the charade that all programs are created equal. Last week, Eastern Michigan played Michigan in front of 110,343 fans. There were 3,563 fans for Eastern Michigan’s home opener against Howard.

In this equation and in the backroom negotiations, the raw numbers are a factor for the big names, too. Of course everyone wants Texas, who had close to 101,000 people show up to its date with BYU, while Texas Tech kicked off its season with just under 52,000 fans for Texas State. Oklahoma played Tulsa in front of 85,260 people, while Oklahoma State got under 55,000 people for Arizona.

“Now I’m all verkelmpt … talk amongst yourselves … I’ll give you a topic. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is neither Mormon nor a tabernacle nor a choir. Discuss." … What’s the difference between the BYU offense against Utah and former Cougar basketball player Brandon Davies? Davies had no problems scoring.

And they were downright disconsolate after the V.J. Fehoko fumble return a few minutes later … From Mark Jones, in the case of No v. Duh, “You can sense that BYU is very dispirited right now.” It was 47-10 with eight minutes to play in the game.

“You know I always wanted to pretend I was an architect.” … What if Andrew Luck decided he didn’t want to be Mike Brady? There was no question and no doubt whatsoever that Luck would’ve been the first player picked by Carolina, and then Denver would’ve had a tough choice to make: admit that drafting Tim Tebow was a monster mistake by the old coaching regime and roll the dice on Cam Newton, or go defense. Based on what the rumors and thoughts were last April, Denver probably would’ve taken Von Miller and Buffalo would’ve taken Newton over Marcell Dareus. If the Bills had passed, Cincinnati would’ve surely taken Newton at the four.

Luck is going to be a terrific NFL player someday, but after two NFL games, right now, if you had your choice of Newton or Luck to be your franchise quarterback for the next decade, which one would you take?

Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn said that if Newton would’ve put up record-setting passing numbers, in a Texas Tech-like offense. It seemed like hyperbole at the time, but considering Newton put up 854 passing yards in two games in my NFL, there are a lot of draft “experts” out there right now doing some serious backtracking.

This is for all the TomWortitos … The Brent and Kirk unofficial TomWort count during the broadcast of Oklahoma’s win over Florida State: – because the Sooner linebacker’s name is easy to say when melded together, like TimTebow or TimmyChang or LouPiniella:  22.

Number of tackles made by TomWort: 8

Number of times I sort of thought they said ThomYorke: 14

“Listen I'm only telling the truth. You have got a very big nose.” … Sorry to go Bill Maher, but new rule: You’re not allowed to be referred to as a football powerhouse if you haven’t won a conference title in five years and if you haven’t sold out your building for two seasons. I know you don’t like to hear this, America, but Virginia Tech is the anchor of the ACC, not Florida State.

“Shampoo is better. I go on first and clean the hair. Conditioner is better. I leave the hair silky and smooth. Oh, really, fool? Really. … Stop looking at me, swan!” … The Buckeyes had the fifth best recruiting class in the country last year according to They ranked 20th in 2010, No. 1 in 2009, and No. 4 in 2008. This is a program that had 36 players drafted over the last six seasons, and has at least 15 players on the current roster that’ll end up being drafted over the next few years. Suspensions, schmuspensions – there’s no excuse. Adam Sandler lookalike Luke Fickell can’t get another 4-of-18, 35-yard passing performance out of his quarterbacks without feeling the Urban Meyer heat coming down the pipe.

“You couldn't leave well enough alone, could you, little twerp? No, you had to push it. Well, now you're gonna pay!” … In my next life, I demand my parents to name me Steele Jantz. Since that’s not going to happen, I humbly request that the part of the Iowa State quarterback in Beating Iowa - The Steele Jantz Story, be played by the 1984 version of Billy Zabka. It’s only because of the name. He actually looks more like Jeff Spicoli without the long hair.

“Welcome to the Statue of Liberty. The statue is a gift from French citizens that has come to symbolize hope for naked women everywhere … BOCCE BALLS!!!” … In a very special episode of this week’s Alex Neutz tracker, we welcome in guest star, Wonderful Terrific Monds II, son of former Nebraska star, Wonderful Terrific Monds. The Buffalo linebacker made one tackle against Ball State, while Neutz grabbed four balls for 78 yards and a score.

And I’m pushing for GameDay to come broadcast from my breakfast nook, because my four-year old daughter can now throw a forward pass better with a tighter spiral and more accurately than Joe Bauserman … It’s Year Three, Week One of my Ellen-getting-on-the-cover-of-Oprah quixotic pursuit to get the ESPN College Football Final guys to award me a helmet sticker and the signed T-shirt, suitable for framing. Why do I deserve one this week? I don’t. It’s time the guys to give one big helmet sticker to all the college football fans who have put up with a boatload of garbage over the last year. Instead of being able to enjoy the games on the field, the fans have had to deal with a daily ticker of scandals, cheaters, hypocrites, and liars, and now, just when this is all getting really, really, fun, the narrative has been all expansion and realignment. It’s been hard to be a college football fan lately, and those who have stuck with it deserve better from the sport, the people in charge of it, and the greedy adults who continue to exploit it.

- Part 2. The Irish Will Play For The BCS Title ... Soon