The University of Texas and the University of Oklahoma, two collegiate programs that have been linked to an SEC expansion recently, have officially notified the Big 12 conference on when they intend to depart from the conference according to a press release from Oklahoma on Monday morning.
“The University of Oklahoma and The University of Texas at Austin notified the Big 12 Athletic Conference today that they will not be renewing their grant of media rights following expiration in 2025,” the statement from Oklahoma, in conjunction with Texas, read.
The two collegiate programs also detailed why it was important that they notify the conference early.
“Providing notice to the Big 12 at this point is important in advance of the expiration of the conference’s current media rights agreement. The universities intend to honor their existing grant of rights agreements.”
On Wednesday, July 21, the Houston Chronicle reported that both Texas and Oklahoma had expressed interest in joining an SEC Superconference. At the time, neither Texas nor Oklahoma would comment on the matter.
“Speculation always swirls around collegiate athletics,” said a spokesperson representing Texas on Wednesday. “We will not address rumors or speculation.”
Although, after a few days of the story being released, it looks like Texas and Oklahoma have quietly lined up some dominoes behind the scenes. This is evident with the joint press release, as both Texas and Oklahoma notified the Big 12 of their intent to depart.
With a potential superconference on the horizon, the SEC could be looking at 16 teams in the conference.
The addition of Oklahoma would also up the SEC’s reach to 12 out of 50 states in the country. That being Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma.
“However, both universities will continue to monitor the rapidly evolving collegiate athletics landscape as they consider how best to position their athletic programs for the future,” said Oklahoma and Texas in a joint statement to the Big 12 on Monday morning.