After the drug, alcohol and murder scandal under former Baylor basketball coach Dave Bliss, and now with the sexual-assault scandal under former Baylor football coach Art Briles, there are those who wonder if the Bears should be – and will be – kicked out or voted out of the Big 12.
Mac Engel doesn’t see it happening, at least not from a logistical standpoint.
“There’s nobody else. That’s the problem,” the Fort Worth Star-Telegram columnist said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “The reality of it is, Baylor beat TCU into the Big 12 in ’96. Baylor was the worst forever, and then it invested and it finally started to pay off in basketball with Scott Drew and women’s basketball with Brittney Griner. They won national championships in tennis, baseball – any number of sport other than football. And that’s the one driving the boat. The truth is, Baylor is already here. They’re not going to kick them out because who are you going to replace them with? The Big 12 already has too many small private schools and they’re not going to kick out Baylor, even though i think a lot of people at Baylor – TCU as well – are scared to death if there is a reshuffling of conference realignment, they’re both scared they’re going to be left out because they’re small schools. Would Baylor be left out? Not right now.”
While Baylor, which became a national power under Briles, will almost certainly take a step back in the college football landscape, the Big 12 could take a step back as well – especially considering that the league was left out of the College Football Playoff in 2014 and had a subpar playoff showing in 2015, with Oklahoma losing to Clemson, 37-17.
“The Big 12 is an enormous loser in this because it had a top-10 player in college football that’s scarred – and I’m being nice about it,” Engel said. “The state of Texas loses – everybody loses in this. But I would disagree (about Baylor getting kicked out of the conference). Even though theoretically it sound semi-plausible, I think in reality, because of tV contracts, tenure – Baylor is an original Big 12 member – and the fact that there’s nobody else of note to replace it, I don’t think that them being kicked out of the Big 12 is practical or realistic.”