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Oklahoma Wants Beebe Out

In the least surprising news of the day, Oklahoma wants Dan Beebe out as Big 12 conference commissioner if the Sooners are going to stick around. To say that this is long overdue would be an understatement. Beebe managed to keep the Big 12 from falling apart last year by inking an unsustainable deal with Texas that essentially spawned the Longhorn Network while only bolstering a winner-take-all revenue sharing that put Texas on top of the conference.

At the time the move looked like the right one, especially to schools that would likely be left behind in the event of major conference realignment (read: Iowa State, Kansas State, Baylor and possibly even Kansas). However, even then, an objective observer could see that the deal was a castle made of sand.

Not surprisingly, a year later the Big 12 is looking at itself in the mirror and seeing nine schools where there used to be twelve, Oklahoma schools investigating the Pac 12 with more than a little interest and Missouri looking at an invitation from the SEC. Needless to say, things aren't good. While Beebe can't be blamed for everything, he certainly looked for the quick fix instead of staying on top of his job as conference commissioner.

I suspect Beebe leaving will be the least of Oklahoma's concerns by the end of it. The bigger terms that the Sooners are looking for before declaring their allegiance to the Big 12 are concerning the Longhorn Network and revenue sharing. Yesterday, it looked like the folks in Norman wanted equal revenue sharing (which would mean LHN served no purpose). The Oklahoman's article today was a little vaguer on the restrictions they have in mind for the network, but it still seems a long way off.

As for the meanings of this, Dan Wolken thinks "the jig is up" and Oklahoma may be staying. I still think the Sooners are on their way to the Pac 12.

Author's note: if you're interested in some irony, read the caption of the picture above (it's unchanged from the original AP story last year)