Mike Gundy is one of the first Big 12 coaches to discuss Oklahoma’s and Texas’ expected exits to the SEC.
ESPN’s Marty Smith is in Stillwater ahead of the NBA Draft watch party at Eskimo Joes, but before those festivities get kicked off, Smith stopped by Oklahoma State football offices to chat with Mike Gundy.
Smith put out a series of tweets Thursday afternoon with Gundy’s thoughts on the future of the Big 12 and what OU and UT leaving the league means for Oklahoma State.
“I wish I knew,” Gundy told Smith. “You hear people talk about ultimately there’s going to be a power 4. In my opinion, if I was in meetings or behind closed doors would I say that that’s a probability? I’d say yes. Again, somebody else might make that decision. Could there be teams that jump in and say we’re going to continue as a Power 5? I think that’s marketable. I think the television, ESPN, they’re gonna have a big, big say in that.
“They’re the ones representing television dollars, and they make those decisions. I think at some point the leaders will get together and say, this is what we have, if this is what you will offer us. If not, it might be something else. Ultimately that’s who’s going to make the decisions in my opinion.”
The Big 12 and ESPN are engaged in a bit of a dispute after Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby sent a cease and desist letter to the network and alleged that ESPN conspired with the SEC and American Athletic Conference for the AAC to raid members from the Big 12.
For now, Oklahoma and Texas are tied to the league until current TV rights deals run out in 2025, unless the schools pay hefty fees to buy out of those contracts.
“I think anybody that says they really know the future is maybe stepping out of line,” Gundy told Smith. “The goal, from what I hear, is that this league stays intact to (20)24.”
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