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Boren’s Pac-12 Comments Still Causing a Stir

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When Oklahoma president David Boren stepped out late last week and indicated that the Sooners were focused on heading to the Pac-12, it caused shock waves in these parts.

Apparently, the reverb is still being felt.

I went on The Barnhart and Durham Show this morning. The sports talk show airs on 790 The Zone, the big sports station in Atlanta, and it pairs two of the South’s bigger sports media personalities, Tony Barnhart and Wes Durham.

(You can listen to the entire segment below.)

The guys couldn’t get over some of the things that Boren had said last Friday. And truth be told, it was truly shocking how much Boren shared after being practically mute on the Big 12 brouhaha up until that point.

But as I told Tony and Wes, I think Boren and Co. have simply grown weary of trying to play peacemaker. A year ago, they worked hard to keep the Big 12 together when Nebraska and Colorado decided to split. They did their darnedest to make the league viable for the long term. They pledged their allegiance along with the nine other teams to do everything in their power to keep the league together.

Recent events, though, have shown that everyone else wasn’t as committed.

Texas started The Longhorn Network, and even though ESPN is calling the shots for TLN, the network just keeps pushing limits and pushing buttons. Just when things would simmer down, it would stir things up again.

Texas A&M wanted to bolt a year ago, but even though it said it would work to keep the Big 12 together, there was always a feeling that the Aggies had their eye on the door. Now, they’ve not only turned the knob and opened the door, but they’ve also got one foot out.

Amid all of this, I suspect OU tired of trying to hold together teams that seemed to be doing everything in their power to push away their conference brethren. Why keep fighting for the Big 12 when so many are fighting against it?

No doubt Boren surprised many with his comments. Probably even frustrated some folks, too. But it’s safe to say no one is more frustrated than Boren, frustrated that the Big 12 seems destined to dissolve, frustrated that all of OU’s efforts have been for naught.

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Jenni Carlson

Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football... Read more ›