Moves by Texas, Oklahoma from Big 12 to SEC bumped to 2024 Ex-Ohio State football players acquitted of rape, kidnapping SEC divides $721.8M in total revenue among schools

AUSTIN, Texas. Texas and Oklahoma are heading to the Southeastern Conference in 2024, a year earlier than originally planned, after Big 12 officials cleared the way for legendary programs to exit their league on Thursday.

Texas and Oklahoma would leave behind $50 million each school would receive over the next two seasons under Big 12 media contracts.

Big 12 commissioner Brett Jormak said the league would only agree to an early exit “if it’s in our best interest.”

“Having reached this agreement, we are now able to accelerate our new start as a 12-team league and move forward in earnest with our initiatives and plans for the future,” Jormak said in a statement announcing the agreement.

BYU, Central Florida, Cincinnati and Houston join the Big 12 ahead of the 2023 football season, giving the league a temporary membership of 14 schools.

The agreement still needs to be approved by the boards of regents of Texas and Oklahoma, but this is considered a formality.

Commissioner of the Securities and Exchange Commission Greg Sankey Schools will become full members of the conference on July 1, 2024, the statement said.

“We continue to prepare for the membership transition and look forward to meeting new conference attendees and moving into our future as a 16-team league,” Sankey said.

Texas and Oklahoma’s moves have been in development since 2021, when the Securities and Exchange Commission invited Big 12 hosts to join the already strongest football conference in the country.

According to the Associated Press, Oklahoma and Texas have competed in 10 national championships together, but not since the Longhorns’ 2005 season championship. TCU, which was the college football championship game in the playoffs last season, joined Oklahoma as the only Big 12 team to make the playoffs.

At first, Big 12 officials were stunned by the departure. Former Commissioner Big 12 Bob Bowlesby even accused ESPN of trying to “destabilize” the league in order to help Texas and Oklahoma get out early.

Thursday’s announcement was much more heartfelt. Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanek, who is also chairman of the Big 12’s board of directors, called the deal “fair for all parties” and said it could not have happened without the league’s broadcast partners ESPN and Fox.

Money has been a driving factor in the changing landscape of rebuilding college athletics. The SEC reported a $49.9 million per school revenue distribution for the 2021-2022 school year, more than $7 million more than the Big 12 distributed to its members during the same period.

The addition of Texas and Oklahoma to the SEC’s broadcast portfolio is only expected to increase the league’s payouts. They will land in their new league just in time for a new $3 billion deal with ESPN that gives the network broadcast rights to all conference football games.

The addition of BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF will strengthen the Big 12’s presence in the country and push the league into new media markets.

Texas and Oklahoma have not yet entered the SEC because both schools were affiliated with the Big 12 and its other members through media rights grants during the 2024-25 school year. This deal ran concurrently with the conference’s television deals with Fox and ESPN.

“We have always been committed to fulfilling our contractual obligations to the Big 12. The collegiate athletics landscape has continued to evolve rapidly, and working together to accelerate our exit has benefited all parties,” said Texas President Jay Hartzell. “The Big 12 has been a respected partner for almost three decades and we look forward to the last season of vigorous competition with our friends and rivals.”

COLUMBUS, Ohio. Two former Ohio State football players were acquitted Thursday on charges of rape and kidnapping resulting from sexual contact with a woman in an apartment shared by the two players.

Amir Rip And Yasen Screw embraced, and both cried after the announcement of the verdict of the jury. Their lawyers argued in court that the woman had consensual sex with both men, but later regretted it. They also accused the victim’s father of pushing her and the authorities to initiate criminal cases.

Franklin County Assistant Attorney Daniel Meyer said the woman came to the apartment expecting to chat with Rip, but was brutally raped by two men.

The jury deliberated for less than four hours between Wednesday and Thursday mornings before finding Rip and Wint not guilty of two counts of rape and kidnapping. Each man could face more than 30 years in prison and registration as sex offenders if found guilty.

Two players were removed from the team in February 2020 after being arrested.

The woman told police that she was having consensual sex with Rip before Wint entered the room, and both forced her to have sex. After a few minutes they stopped and Rip recorded the woman agreeing that the sex was consensual.

Rip and Lloyd McFarquhar, another former Ohio State football player, testified Wednesday that the players were ordered to obtain evidence that their sexual partners agreed to defend themselves from prosecution.

The Southeastern Conference says it distributed an average of $49.9 million to its 14 member schools in the fiscal year ending last August.

commissioner Greg Sankey said on Thursday that the league has shared $721.8 million of total revenue among its members. This includes $698.5 million distributed by the league office and $23.3 million left by schools for travel and other bowl-related expenses. The amounts refer to fiscal year 2021-22, which ended August 31.

In the previous fiscal year, the SEC distributed $764.4 million in total revenue, or about $54.6 million, to each school.

The distribution total includes income generated from television deals, bowl games, college football playoffs, the SEC football championship, the SEC men’s basketball tournament, NCAA championships, and additional surplus distributions.

It does not include an additional $8.1 million in NCAA and SEC grants divided among 14 schools.


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