To be upfront and concise, college football isn’t doomed. The sky isn’t falling (yet).
Saturdays aren’t spoiled; they will continue to be brilliant and vibrant. You can (and should) continue to enjoy them.
The sport you know and love won’t immediately mutate into some foreign, unwatchable product. That is not where we are headed (yet), no matter how uncharted the waters might be. But after USC and UCLA bolted the Pac-12 for the Big Ten in a matter of hours before many checked out for the holiday weekend, one can’t help but question what the sport will look like in 10 years.
More specifically, whether the interest of the fan—the greatest commodity in college football no matter the conference, team or time zone—is even being considered at all.
Mercury News writer Jon Wilner broke the story Thursday. The very concept was denied at first by many, only because it felt too abnormal to be true.
By Thursday night, the move for the 2024-2025 season was finalized and confirmed by all parties involved. The Big Ten Conference Council of Presidents and Chancellors voted on expansion, and it was quickly (and unanimously) approved.
“The unanimous vote today signifies the deep respect and welcoming culture our entire conference has for the University of Southern California, under the leadership of President Carol Folt, and the University of California, Los Angeles, under the leadership of Chancellor Gene Block,” Big Ten Conference Commissioner Kevin Warren said in a statement. “I am thankful for the collaborative efforts of our campus leadership, athletics directors and Council of Presidents and Chancellors who recognize the changing landscape of college athletics, methodically reviewed each request, and took appropriate action based on our consensus.”
Remember “The Alliance”?
Less than a year earlier, the Big Ten, ACC and Pac-12 formed a pact that sounded splendid on a press release.
Although it was unclear exactly what this meant outside a few unifying quotes on the press release, a bond was constructed. The three conferences would work together moving forward, so they said.