Iowa State University staff and fans react to potential Big 12 shakeup

Iowa State University students say they're surprised by Texas and Oklahoma's decision to leave the Big 12 conference.
Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 8:18 AM CDT
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AMES, Iowa (KCCI) - Iowa State Athletics Director Jamie Pollard and Iowa State University President Dr. Wendy Wintersteen issued a joint statement late Monday regarding Oklahoma and Texas’ plan to leave the Big 12 Conference.

It comes after the University of Texas and University of Oklahoma announced on Monday they would not renew an agreement to stay with the conference beyond 2025.

This decision could financially hurt Iowa State University. Television money from the conference is split between the Big 12 schools.

ISU received nearly $40 million from last year’s conference. A conference without Oklahoma and Texas would have less value.

“I think it’s really important though that all Cyclone fans understand that it’s not a time to panic,” Pollard said. “Our industry is in a complete state of flux and, quite frankly, every institution should be evaluating where they are and how things are gonna look as this landscape continues to change.”

Pollard also encouraged fans to take a step back and not to get caught up in all the rumors. Instead, Pollard said fans should be patient, because the situation won’t be resolved anytime soon.

Iowa State University students said they were surprised by the announcement. Some students and Cyclone fans say they think ISU will join the Big 10.

“I think that would be a good fit academically and sports athletically,” ISU fan Randy Semadeni said. “Good football, good basketball, it’s a good fit.”

Megan Durbin, a senior track member for the Cyclones, said all these changes in college sports could be good for college athletes.

“The NCAA is changing a lot,” Durbin said. “I don’t if it’s for the better or worse, but right now it seems like it’s for the better.”

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