MU wont play in Big East-SEC ChallengeBy TEREZ A. PAYLOR
The Kansas City Star
The schedule for the upcoming Big East-SEC Challenge was released Friday morning, and neither of the league's newcomers Missouri and Texas A&M will participate.
We learned yesterday that because of the 14 teams in the SEC and what was going on with the Big East, they didnt know if they'd be able to make that work, said Missouri athletic director Mike Alden.
There had been speculation that Missouri was working on scheduling a notable Big East team to come to Columbia this season, and with Syracuse pulling out of the Big East challenge news that also broke recently some might still be assuming it could be the Orange.
But Alden seemingly shot down that possibility Friday, saying Missouri has had conversations with Syracuse but as of now, a non-conference game between the two schools seems unlikely.
I know that there was interest from all parties, but as they were trying to unfold their scheduling, really from a Big East standpoint they just weren't able to make that work, Alden said.
Slive said the league will work with Missouri to fill the slot on the schedule.
We worked hard to try to make it 14 games, and we just couldn't get the game we needed out of the Big East, Slive said. We're going to do everything we can to help Missouri and Texas A&M fill that slot.
Slive discusses Deatons absence
Because of Missouri chancellor Brady Deaton's unexpected absence from the SEC Spring Meetings - Alden said he was back in Columbia Thursday and Friday dealing with a non-athletics related campus matter - Missouri did not have a vote in the presidents meeting, the final vote of the day.
I know it doesn't have anything to do with athletics and it doesn't have anything to do with the SEC, Alden said of Deaton's absence. I did speak to Dr. Deaton last night, and he wanted me to pass along his best to his colleagues and (how) he felt bad about not being able to make it, but his focus and priority needed to be on some issues that he was dealing with on campus today.
Alden - who voted in the athletic directors meeting earlier in the day - was present at the presidents meeting, but the SEC does not allow substitutes, according to Slive, who was rather forgiving on the matter.
Presidents have emergencies, it happens, Slive said. That's not a big story. I've been here ten years, every now and then it happens. I wouldn't beat him up for it. He called and let us know.
Missouri, Texas A&M will team up in Atlanta
Missouri and Texas A&M will hold a SEC reception at 6:30 p.m. on June 6 at the J.W. Marriott in Buckhead, Ga., for an event that Alden says will show how excited both institutions are to be a part of the SEC.
Alden said he, Deaton, Pinkel and Texas A&M president R. Bowen Loftin and football coach Kevin Sumlin will all be in attendance.
They're saying 700 to 800 folks will be there, Alden said.
Slive was impressed by the gesture.
That's a nice event, done totally on their own initiative, Slive said, who added that the SEC was invited and will be sending plenty of staff members. They just want to celebrate their coming (to the league) with their folks in Atlanta.
The event is free, but the deadline to register is Friday, June 1. For additional information, please call 800-372-6822 or email email@example.com.
The league announced that the league will distribute $241.5 million to the 12 league institutions for the 2011-2012 school year, the highest amount in league history.
The average amount distributed to each school was $20.1 million, and with the league currently in talks to negotiate its already-mammoth TV deals, that number figures to rise even higher in future years.
Slive said Friday's there's a possibility a SEC Network - one that would no doubt be similar to the Big 10's cash-cow network - will be up and running starting in 2014.
We're looking at that as a potential option, Slive said.
Florida president Bernie Machen said the SEC is putting together a group to research and analyze the best way to deal with concussions.
We will be appointing a working group charged with evaluating all the available research, guidelines (and) bringing recommendations back to the league for further considerations, said Machen, the chairman of the league's presidents and chancellors committee.
That group, Machen said, will be chaired by Mississippi chancellor Dan Jones.
It's time for us to step up and see what we can do about this issue, Machen said.
Machen said the league will take a closer look at drug testing, starting in October.
There is no control or standardization either by the NCAA or league or anybody else, Machen said. So what we want to find out is what is everybody doing, and that will lead to an agenda item at our October meeting. I don't know what we'll say (then).
Thanks to the addition of Texas A&M and Missouri, Slive said the SEC is looking for another bowl tie-in for the next two years.
We're about ready to finalize a deal, Slive said. When we're ready, we'll announce it.
*St. Louis Sports Commission has been making a push for a possible bowl game in the city, but Alden said there were no discussions about bowl locations this week.
That wasn't something that was on the table, Alden said.