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Texas A&M President: 'The Big 12 Is Certainly Not What It Was'

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Suddenly, Kansas and Missouri may have options.

Texas A&M President R. Bowen Loftin released a statement Sunday night regarding the future of the Big 12:

"As [athletic director] Bill Byrne and I have said on several occasions, our desire is for the Big 12 conference to continue. With the departure of two universities from the conference last week, the Big 12 is certainly not what it was," Loftin said in the statement. "We are aggressively exploring our options, one of which is for the Big 12 to continue in some form. We have also had extensive discussions with other conferences over the past two days. We continue to evaluate our options in a deliberate manner as we work toward a decision that is in the best long-term interests of Texas A&M."

This is good news for both MU and KU, whose best shot is for the Big 12 to continue on. A&M isn't the linchpin -- that's Texas -- but whether or not they bolt for the SEC could have a major impact on the future of KU and MU.

If Texas and three other Big 12 South schools decide to bolt for the Pac-10, then A&M would have to decide whether it wants to join the Pac-10 or the SEC.

Kansas fans probably want them to choose the SEC. If that's the case, then Kansas is considered a front-runner to receive an invite to the Pac-10.

Texas and Texas A&M regents are expected to put their future up to a vote sometime towards the end of next week.