Headlinin’: Missouri refrains from Big 12′s Hallelujah chorus

Matt Hinton

Making the morning rounds.

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Not dead yet, but not out of the woods, either. Despite the best efforts of Oklahoma president David Boren to paint a picture of league solidarity on Thursday, the Big 12 has not formally approved a new deal to split television revenue evenly throughout the conference, and Missouri remains open to overtures from other conferences — read: from the SEC — until everyone in the Big 12 is on the same page. If that's even possible. The Tigers were reportedly in line for an SEC invite until the Pac-12 abruptly passed on adding Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and/or Texas on Tuesday, forcing the Sooners to work toward the uneasy Big 12 truce they attempted to forge Thursday night by announcing a new commissioner and a new (though still informal) rights-sharing agreement.

"We either stick in the Big 12 because everything came about the way it needs to, the right way, with all the differences being settled in Missouri's favor," an anonymous Missouri administrator told the Kansas City Star. "But what are the odds of that happening? The other option is to join another conference and I believe that is something that we're very open to." [Kansas City Star, New York Times]

Meanwhile, back in the future… Contrary to certain reports out of Austin, the Pac-12 was never close to accepting Texas, according to commissioner Larry Scott, who said in a radio interview Thursday that Oklahoma was pushing the conference to add OU and Oklahoma State to get to 14 teams and stop there, without Texas. But settling on 14 "never really made sense to us," Scott told 950 KJR-AM in Seattle, and Pac-12 presidents were wary of dealing with Texas after being publicly burned by the Longhorns last year.

"It wasn't nearly as close as the media painted it out to be," Scott said. "If you paid attention to where the media reports where coming from that it was imminent, it was all out of Texas. … I don't see any scenario in which we're going to be having this conversation anytime soon again." [950 KJR-AM, San Jose Mercury News]

Woo Pig Owie. Arkansas will go into Alabama Saturday without its best pass rusher, Jake Bequette, who's out for the second straight week with a bad hamstring. Bequette, a preseason All-SEC pick according to league coaches, injured the hammy in the first quarter of the Razorbacks' win over New Mexico two weeks ago and sat out the entirety of last week's win over Troy. Against Alabama, he might have come in slightly more handy. [Arkansas Democrat-Gazette]{YSP:MORE}

Don't stoop to their level, my probation-ravaged sons. USC coaches, reasoning that Arizona State not only commits a lot of penalties but commits a lot of personal foul penalties, in particular, have given the scout team a long leash to bait the starters with frequent cheap shots in practice ahead of Saturday night's date with the Sun Devils. "We've worked hard on it all week with our service teams, late hits and blocks in the back and not retaliating," said head coach Lane Kiffin. "We've shown them a number of clips on film of them doing that. That's one thing but when it gets loud and hot and everything going on with the game, a national game like this, we've got to do our best to keep our composure."

For the record, ASU has committed 24 penalties for 241 yards over its first three games to USC's 21 penalties for 199 yards, a difference of one flag and 14 yards per game. [Orange County Register]

You can't say that on television. Actually you can, and ESPN sideline babe Jenn Brown did on Thursday night, when she inadvertently called Cincinnati coach Butch Jones "Bitch" during the Bearcats' blowout win over N.C. State:

Nice save, Jenn, and kudos for owning up to it. But trust us: Butch Jones has heard a lot worse. [@JennBrownESPN]

Quickly… Nebraska cornerback Alfonzo Dennard will play against Wyoming, but defensive lineman Jared Crick will not. … USC loses a starting guard for the season to a bum foot. … Virginia Tech will be without its all-time receptions leader at Marshall. … A former Tulsa linebacker dies after an unsanctioned boxing match at a local church. … And of the many toothless residents of Cincinnati, this one is definitely the cutest.

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Matt Hinton is on Facebook and Twitter: Follow him @DrSaturday.