Brett Yormark Gives Update On Big 12 Conference Expansion

Jul 12, 2023, 11:29 AM | Updated: 11:43 pm

ARLINGTON, Texas – Big 12 Conference commissioner Brett Yormark provided an update on the possibility of his league expanding with more programs with Texas and Oklahoma departing in 2024.

Yormark spoke on the subject during the opening day of Big 12 Media Days. The league’s Media Days are being held at the home of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, from July 12-13.

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The commissioner opened his remarks with a prepared statement. Yorkmark emphasized that he began his tenure in 2022 by saying that the Big 12 would be “open for business.”

“I feel like I’ve been talking about expansion for a year now,” Yormark said. “We have a plan for expansion. I’m not going to really address it today.”

“I love the composition of the conference right now,” the commissioner continued. “If we stay at 12, we’re perfectly fine with that.”

Yormark said that the conference would add additional programs in the future if it made sense for the league.

Brett Yormark’s previous comments on Big 12 Expansion

In June, Yormark spoke about the potential of the Big 12 expanding.

Coming out of the spring meetings, the commissioner made it clear to reporters during a Zoom call that his league has “a plan” for expansion.

RELATED: How To Watch BYU Coaches And Players At Big 12 Media Days

“We did discuss expansion, had a great discussion about expansion, in fact. And we have a plan,” Yormark said.

The commentary on expansion comes days after reports that Colorado has had “substantive” talks about leaving the Pac-12 for the Big 12 Conference. There have also been reports that the Big 12 is interested in UConn and Gonzaga.

“As I’ve said all along, we have an appetite to be a national conference in our makeup from coast-to-coast. And we do believe in the upside of basketball moving forward as a collective group. That being said, we love our current composition and love the four new schools that are coming in next month. However, if the opportunity presents itself to create value, we will pursue it. … It is a focus of ours and when we’re ready to speak more with greater specificity, we’ll do so.”

Yormark was asked specifically about Gonzaga if they are being considered as a full member or a basketball-only option for the Big 12.

The first-year Commissioner responded, “We’re going to consider all options. As I said before, we do see the upside in basketball moving forward for all of the right reasons. We think it’s undervalued, and there’s a chance for us to double down as the number one conference in America. But football’s the driver and we all know that. We’re exploring all options and all considerations at this time.”

Yormark went into further detail about what the league looks for in a potential new member.

“We have some guiding principles when we think about expansion. I mean, it’s all strategic here,” Yormark said. “At the top is the academic alignment and the leadership and the cultural fit and the geography and the athletic performance and the upside that a potential institution has as they would potentially join the Big 12. We think about all of those things as a collective group. And we discussed all of those guiding principles this week.”

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Brett Yormark Gives Update On Big 12 Conference Expansion