The Big Ten's timetable for expansion was set for 12-18 months in December. Well, six months later, the Big Ten added its twelfth team, Nebraska, this past Friday. With the Big Ten's plans for expansion, it forced other conferences to look into expanding for financial reasons. Expanding meant tapping into bigger media markets, which in return means bigger bucks for conferences. Conferences such as the SEC and Pac 10 were not going to wait for the Big Ten to pick and choose the best markets to tap into, so they initiated expansion and as a result, the timetable for expansion changed suddenly.
With Nebraska joining the Big Ten, Colorado going to the Pac 10, and Boise State joining the Mountain West Conference, the remaining dominoes of conference expansion are expected to fall by the end of this week. The Pac 10 is putting the full court press on Oklahoma and Texas. Reports indicated that Pac 10 commissioner Larry Scott spent the majority of this past Saturday meeting with Oklahoma Sooners officials. Both Texas and Oklahoma expect to have decisions on which conferences they will join by this week. With Texas and Oklahoma being the two biggest names remaining, it will be interesting to see if the two schools are willing to keep their rivalry intact. A television station in Missouri reported that Texas was headed to the Big Ten, and Oklahoma was headed to the SEC. With all this being said, it is still possible that Texas and Oklahoma may end up staying with the Big 12 in order to preserve the conference that from all indications looks like a thing of the past.
Arguably the third highest profile school to possibly make a move is Notre Dame. Notre Dame, which is apart of the Big East for every sport except for football, seems very reluctant to give up its football team's independent status. By all indications, the Big East is likely to give Notre Dame an ultimatum, forcing Notre Dame to make a decision on whether to join the Big East fully or go independent with all sports. If this is done, Notre Dame will most likely join the Big Ten possibly by the end of the week. By the end of this week, we should have a good idea of how the college football landscape will look in two years.
MLB Players Favor No Use of Instant Replay
After the blown call at first base by umpire Jim Joyce that cost Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game, the issue of instant replay within baseball picked up a lot of steam. Currently the MLB only uses instant replay on questionable home runs that may be fair or foul. A recently poll by ESPN surprisingly showed that many, in fact over seventy percent of baseball players are in favor of no instant replay for questionable calls on the field.
Baseball is in desperate need of instant video replay for questionable calls, and it is unfortunate it took a blown call that cost Galarraga a perfect game for this discussion to arise. Realistically after last year's World Series between the Phillies and Yankees in which many calls on the field were blown, instant replay should have been instituted at the beginning of this season. Baseball purists cite that instant video replay would slow the game down even more. The majority of sports have some type of replay to review questionable calls, and it is a fact that baseball replays would take the least amount of time out of all the sports. Reviewing whether a runner was safe or out or whether a ball was fair or foul wouldn't take more than a minute. At the end of the day, if the technology is there to improve the game, baseball must institute instant replay so for that the integrity of the game isn't questioned.