The real Big 12 winner: basketball
The Big 12 is alive and by shrinking to 10 teams without Nebraska and Colorado, Big 12 helps hoops actually grew tougher.
The league completed a banner year last season. The Big 12 had the best winning percentage (30-18) amongst the six major conferences when playing each other. Three teams placed in the top eight and four among the top 13 of the final NCAA RPI ratings and seven teams advanced to the NCAA tournament. As many as nine Big 12 players could be selected in the first round of the NBA draft next week.
When the Big 12 officially begins play as a 10-team league, it will lose two of its worst teams in Nebraska and Colorado. Those teams combined to win eight conference games last year, or fewer than the conference's top seven teams.
Add to that an 18-game, round-robin conference schedule as opposed to the 16-game schedule in which teams in the same division faced each another twice, but played the other division teams just once. Now, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Baylor, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State will face Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri and Iowa State twice. It also allows for all 10 teams to visit each Big 12 arena every year instead of every other year.
"When it comes to the specifics of men's basketball in the new 10-team Big 12 Conference, our staff is most excited about the possibility of using a full round-robin schedule during the regular season," Texas coach Rick Barnes said in a release. "This should create even more excitement about our league, and we know the fans will appreciate the opportunity to see a home-and-home series between all teams in the conference every year."
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Part 2 of the articles on OSU's involvment in academic fraud was released. Some claim the expose is unfounded. Ian and Richard warn that there are two sides to all stories.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss Mack Brown, Manny Diaz and all the latest with the Texas Longhorns.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett give you the latest on the Johnny Manziel story and Charles Barkley weighs in. You won't believe who the outspoken NBA Hall of Famer is disappointed in and what he thinks about the autograph allegations.
Play Podcast Kirk Herbstreit joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett for his weekly visit to preview the 2013 college football season.
Play Podcast Former TCU and current Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the expectations for the Bengals this season, give a prediction for the TCU-LSU game and talk about what it's like having the Hard Knocks cameras follow him.
Play Podcast Randy Galloway, Matt Mosley, and Mark Friedman react to Dez Bryant's comments regarding the NCAA's ongoing investigation of Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel.
Play Podcast Richard Durrett, Ian Fitzsimmons and Glenn "Stretch" Smith react to Dez Bryant sounding off yesterday after practice about Johnny Manziel and the shadiness of the NCAA.
Play Podcast Former NCAA investigator and Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to weigh in on the Johnny Manziel drama and give some insight as to what goes on during an NCAA investigation.