For Pete's Sake

Temple, Northern Illinois and 15 more schools reportedly interested in joining Big 12

AP

Who’s the one?

ESPN reported that 17 schools have contacted the Big 12 about possible expansion. That’s a crazy number, right?

There were 16 schools named in the ESPN report: Cincinnati, Houston, BYU, South Florida, Central Florida, Connecticut, Memphis, Colorado State, Boise State, Tulane, Temple, East Carolina, SMU, New Mexico, Northern Illinois and San Diego State.

A few questions: Temple? Northern Illinois? San Diego State? New Mexico?

There are some real head-scratcher in that group of 16.

The first nine schools on that list have been bandied about for some time now. East Carolina and SMU publicly lobbied last month. Temple did as well, although a columnist in Philadelphia thought that was delusional.

But some of those other schools are new, right? Well, did you know that there is a Northern Illinois to the Big 12 Facebook page? A columnist in San Diego wrote last month that Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby and San Diego State athletic director Jim Sterk have a history that dates to their Pac-10 days. Well ... Sterk is at Mizzou now, so that may kill the school’s chances.

The ESPN story, which quoted unnamed sources, said Bowlsby will have a video conference with all 17.

But who is that lone unnamed school?

Pete Grathoff: 816-234-4330, @pgrathoff

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