Report: Big Ten targeting Oregon Ducks, numerous other Pac-12 schools in expansion efforts

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In the world of conference realignment, you need to be careful about who you’re listening to. There are a lot of conflicting reports out there.

For the past week or so, the Big Ten commissioner, Kevin Warren, has been steadfast that the conference is not looking to further expand after already poaching both USC and UCLA from the Pac-12 earlier this summer. However, there is a new report out there from CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd that shows that the Big Ten could be after another group of Pac-12 teams in the future.

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“According to my reporting, the Big Ten is now targeting Cal, Stanford, Oregon, and Washington in a further expansion that would bring the league to 20 teams at least,” Dodd said. “There is another report out there that the Big Ten is also looking at Florida State and Miami, and at that point would be a monopoly of college athletics at the top of the food chain.”

When would this potential expansion take place? That’s a question that we don’t have an answer to. It could be something that comes to fruition soon, or it could be something that takes a couple of years to play out. Despite the report, Warren is holding strong in saying that there are no current plans to continue the expansion.

Make of that what you will.

For now, we are going to look at things as if the Big Ten did reach out to those four Pac-12 schools and consider what it would mean for the sport of college football. It would certainly be great news for the Oregon Ducks since they would no longer be left behind and instead be able to join one of the super conferences and compete with the best teams in the nation. On the other hand, it could very well mean the end of the Pac-12, at least as we know it.

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“With a 20-team league, they would control more than 30% of the schools in the current Power 5,” Dodd said. “This has sent reverberations throughout the industry. Television sources have consternation because they don’t know how to price these four schools because they’re just not worth the $80-$100 million that the current 16 are going to get in 2024 with USC and UCLA. College athletics are further upset because how many is too many? This has the chance to wreck the Pac-12 and make it go away or at least stay together in some limited fashion. You’ve already heard names like San Diego State headed to the Pac-12, Arizona maybe to the Big 12 as they seek to expand. But nothing on this scale. This is major news and would have reverberations throughout the industry.”

Will the expansion happen? In the long run, I certainly wouldn’t bet against it. Will it happen in the next year or two? That’s something that I don’t feel as confident about.

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The news surrounding conference realignment changes nearly every day, so don’t treat this report as the end-all-be-all. However, if you’re an Oregon fan who thinks the sky is falling because they may be left out of the big dance when all is said and done, I wouldn’t lose hope just yet.

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Story originally appeared on Ducks Wire