It looks like a couple of new additions are coming to the cool kids' table, otherwise known as the Southeastern Conference.
SEC leaders could vote as early as today to invite the universities of Oklahoma and Texas to join their elite college athletics league.
The top brass in both Norman and Austin have expressed their desires for such an invitation, and have also told their soon-to-be-former table mates, the Big 12, that the party is over.
It looks more and more like the SEC has been planning on these additions for some time.
The move will rock the college athletics landscape. The SEC is already the most powerful and wealthiest conference in the land, and adding blue bloods like Texas and Oklahoma will only increase its muscle and coffers.
The other big conferences (the Big 10, the Atlantic Coast Conference and the Pac-12) will look for ways to compete through expansions of their own, while the Big 12 will simply be looking for the exit door.
So, what does all this mean for our beloved Arkansas Razorbacks (who, truth be told, wrote the prologue to this script back in 1991 when Frank Broyles abandoned the Southwest Conference and led this band of wild Hogs to the greener grass of the SEC)? Adding the Longhorns and Sooners should be a very good move for the Hogs.
Membership in the SEC has been a financial windfall for the Razorbacks (and for every other SEC school). The opulent facilities and the top-drawer coaches (well, other than for football) would never have been possible without the jump to the SEC.
Success in football has always been tough in this elite league (there aren't any Rices or SMUs on an SEC schedule, unless you're lucky enough to draw Vanderbilt once in a while). Adding Texas and Oklahoma can't possibly make it any harder than it already is. Besides, trading Alabama and Auburn for those two might even make it slightly less murderous in most years.
As for football recruiting, the Hogs already face off against OU and Texas in that arena. Because of their outsized reputations, neither really needed the "We're in the SEC" pitch in the first place. And, with the leftovers of the Big 12 either getting gobbled up by distant leagues to the north and west or sliding into small-conference obscurity, there will still be plenty of Division 1 Texas talent to go around.
As for other sports, Arkansas seems to compete in the SEC just fine, thank you very much (see nine conference championships in 2020-21).
Arkansas should, and apparently does, welcome the change.
Even Texas A&M, who bolted the Big 12 to get away from their hated big brothers in Austin, has come to its senses and confirmed its commitment to the behemoth the SEC will become. It's all over except the shouting and the check signing.
Hogs fans shouldn't worry, at least about the new kids at the cool table. Arkansas already been there and done that.
What’s the point?
The seemingly sudden proposals for Texas and Oklahoma to join the SEC will be a boon to the conference, and the Hogs will be fine.