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Texas, Oklahoma not renewing Big 12 media rights

Jul 15, 2021; Arlington, TX, USA;  Texas Longhorns head coach Steve Sarkisian speaks to the media during Big 12 media days at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 15, 2021; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns head coach Steve Sarkisian speaks to the media during Big 12 media days at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Texas and Oklahoma took their first step toward leaving the Big 12 on Monday by notifying the conference that they will not be renewing their grants of media rights after they expire in 2025.

“Providing notice to the Big 12 at this point is important in advance of the expiration of the conference’s current media rights agreement,” the schools said in a joint statement. “The universities intend to honor their existing grant of rights agreements. However, both universities will continue to monitor the rapidly evolving collegiate athletics landscape as they consider how best to position their athletics programs for the future.”

Multiple media outlets previously reported the schools’ move to the Southeastern Conference is imminent. SEC commissioner Greg Sankey has refused comment on reports that the Longhorns and Sooners are heading to the conference.

With the schools’ announcement on Monday, the SEC can take steps to vote on adding the two universities.

To leave the league, each university would owe at least $76 million, ESPN reported.

Texas and Oklahoma were founding members of the Big 12, and their departures will set off a ripple effect throughout the conference. Reports Friday indicated Kansas is seeking to join the Big Ten.

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The Big 12’s charter members were Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Iowa State, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech and Baylor.

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Membership dropped to eight with the departures of Nebraska (Big Ten), Colorado (Pac-12) and Missouri and Texas A&M (SEC).

–Field Level Media