USC, UCLA leaving for Big Ten has many questioning Oregon's Pac-12 future
If USC and UCLA are exiting the Pac-12 as early as 2024, what does that mean for Oregon?
Once you get past the shock and awe of the report Thursday that both of the Los Angeles programs are in negotiations with the Big Ten to jump conferences, the next question is a simple one: what happens to the rest of the Pac-12 if two of its flagship programs leave?
Many in the college football media space think the Oregon Ducks are the next team to depart.
“I don’t think we’re done here,” CBS Sports’ Tom Fornelli said. “Realistically, if USC and UCLA are joining the Big Ten, the closest Big Ten school right now to those two in Los Angeles is Nebraska. I don’t know if they want to join the conference thinking they will be the only two West Coast teams in the conference in the long haul, so I wouldn’t be shocked at all to see another couple programs—maybe Oregon or Washington—joining the Big Ten as a follow-up to this.”
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) June 30, 2022
Others felt the same way.
Conferences outside the B1G & SEC with member teams that are attractive – hi rev, athletic success, big markets – should be worried those teams will leave for the new Power 2.
Would imagine that includes more Pac-12 teams such as Oregon, and ACC teams such as Clemson, FSU & UNC.
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) June 30, 2022
The worst part about this for Oregon, you've gotta go to the Big Ten or Big 12 with a partner and Oregon St isn't going to cut it.
Oregon and Washington just became de facto best friends
— Kevin Wade (@KwadeSays) June 30, 2022
Would the Ducks leave the Pac-12? They might have to.
When reports first surfaced about Oklahoma and Texas leaving the Big 12 for the SEC and folks moved on from the initial shock of the news, much of the conversation shifted to what that would mean for the rest of the Big 12 programs left hanging. Many thought other leagues would cannibalize the rest of the Big 12.
In reality, the league found its footing and agreed to soon add Cincinnati, Houston, UCF, and BYU.
Could the same happen to the Pac-12? The league’s new media rights deal will have a lot to do with it.