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TCU Invited to Join the Big XII

Not that anyone expected the Big XII to stand pat, but I'm not sure anyone expected them to act this quickly, as breaking news has TCU invited to join the conference. Per the Austin American-Statesman:

Presidents and chancellors of the Big 12 schools voted this morning to invite Texas Christian University to join the league, according to two-well placed sources.

That would bring the league’s complement to 10 schools after Texas A&M University leaves for the Southeastern Conference.

TCU was slated to join the Big East next season, but clearly that will not be happening now with the Big XII invite, and for what it's worth the Big East looks to be even more reliant on life support than ever (with possibly more raids from the Big XII still to come). We have no official word of an acceptance just yet from TCU officials, but quite obviously this is an offer they would never even fathom rejecting. Acceptance is a foregone conclusion from the TCU perspective.

For the time being, the Big XII is back to ten teams, though Missouri is still seemingly on the fence. Their departure could deliver a quick counter-punch to the now-expanding Big XII, but with Mizzou drunk-dialing the Big Ten and Alabama opposing their entrance into the SEC, that departure may never come to fruition. It's possible the Big XII could remain with the ten they currently have now and then raid the Big East twice more to return to twelve teams.

In any event, a big tip of the hat is in order to Gary Patterson. When then-rising coaching prospect Dennis Franchione left TCU more than ten years ago, most figured Patterson to be an obligatory succession hire who wouldn't last as the Horned Frogs would continue to roam for decades through the non-BCS wilderness. Since then, though, Franchione turned into a complete flop and Patterson has amassed some sixty-six wins the past six years and now has elevated his program to a BCS conference. Not many coaches in college football the past decade can claim to have done what he has in Fort Worth.