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Missouri And Nebraska Are The Big Ten's Fallback Plan

Recently, KCTV-5's Neal Jones said after speaking with a Big Ten administrator that the interest of the Big-10 in Missouri may be overblown by the media.

Here's a possible reason why: The Big Ten would prefer to add Notre Dame to it's line-up.

The snag in any movement is that the Big Ten has not made an offer to Nebraska and/or Missouri because it is likely Notre Dame is still in the mix to join the league. Notre Dame officials have repeatedly said their desire is to stay independent in football but have left the door open in case of seismic shifts in conference realignment. Until discussions between the league and Notre Dame are completely dead, it is probably that the Big Ten won't officially reach out to anyone -- Nebraska, Missouri, Rutgers or any of the other rumored expansion candidates.

That means Missouri and Nebraska are actually the fallback plan in the event Notre Dame doesn't bite.

Taking that into account, how then can either school give the Big-12 an announcement on their future with the conference by Friday? The Big Ten is at least months away from making a decision.

In short, they can't. And the Big-12 likely thinks that, as well, which is the reason they did it. Until Missouri and/or Nebraska gets that invite, the Big-12 holds all the cards.

Unless they, you know, get plucked by the Pac-10.