Various sources with both schools are confirming that both FSU and Clemson will be informing the ACC of their intent to “explore other conference options” (read: there is no more doubt that they’re leaving). The powers-that-be from the Big 12 are playing it very close to the vest in public. While there is a gentlemen’s agreement that the conference will assist both schools with the $20 million exit fee, nothing on that front is official, nor will it be for awhile.
What is most interesting about the recent developments here, is the speed at which everything is happening. When JOS first reported that the Big 12 was planning on expansion in the the near-term, we were hearing that it would be before summer’s end.
As the story has developed, and we’ve continued to follow and write about it, events have moved much more quickly than first anticipated. This past weekend, news that the Big 12 and the SEC were partnering to create a new, independent post-season bowl game accelerated that pace even more, culminating in the news that Clemson had “agreed in principle“. to join the Big 12, and that FSU would soon follow suit.
The news now breaking regarding the two school’s plans to formally inform the ACC of their intent to explore other options means that we could see the Big 12 officially expand back to twelve teams before the summer is even a month old. Interestingly, many of the sources I have been using have gone into what can only be called “radio silence” today. I’m not completely certain what that means, but I believe it bodes well for those who wish to see a quickened timetable on Clemson and FSU’s moves to the Big 12 Conference.