Pac-12 loses USC and UCLA to Big Ten as college conference realignment continues.
Will it add teams to the college conference expansion?
Speculation and rumors surrounding the future of the conference continue to swirl following Pac-12 Football Media Day last week.
Several websites have ranked potential candidates to join the conference if it decides to expand.
Check out who these sites say are the best picks to join the Pac-12.
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Fansided: San Diego State, Boise State, SMU top picks for Pac-12 in conference expansion
The site ranked San Diego State No. 1, Boise State No. 2 and SMU No. 3 in his ranking of the conference’s top ten expansion candidates.
From San Diego State, John Scimeca wrote: “This is the obvious pick. Don’t overthink it, Pac-12 schools. The Aztecs are a solid football program that thrives in southern California, where the conference is set to lose two of cash cows. San Diego County is home to 3.3 million people and the university is building a brand new football stadium. The Aztecs just completed one of the best seasons in school history in 2021, winning 12 games. This marks four of the last six years in which San Diego State won 10 or more games.That addition looks like a possibility…unless another power conference makes a surprise move and knocks the Aztecs out of the Mountain West before the Pac-12 .”
Hawai’i was ranked as the Pac-12’s fourth-best pick, followed by Air Force, Gonzaga, North Dakota State, Fresno State, UC Davis and UNLV.
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Athlon Sports: San Diego State No. 1 eligible for next Pac-12 school, Big 12 options then
Steven Lassan wrote of the Big 12’s possibility: “While it’s a long shot for Big 12 teams to leave for the Pac-12 (10 now), TV dollars and stability will play a huge role in that. If the money and stability is better in the Pac-12, teams from the Big 12 will at least have something to think about. That could be any of the top teams in lucrative markets or with competitive products for television purposes (potentially Oklahoma State, Baylor, Kansas, Texas Tech, Houston Considering the stability the Big 12 will have once Oklahoma and Texas depart, along with the fact that these programs moved from the Pac-12 last fall, there doesn’t seem to be much of a rush to exit the conference at go West. However, Kliavkoff should at least ask about their interest.”
The site also listed Boise State, Fresno State, SMU and UNLV as possible schools for the conference.
More: Are Pac-12 schools ASU, Arizona a college conference realignment deal?
Buffaloes Wire: Texas schools Pac-12 expansion possibility
The website listed some other schools as possibilities for the conference. His list included TCU, Texas Tech and Houston.
Jack Carlough wrote of TCU’s potential application: “While TCU’s religious history may not appeal to the Pac-12, the Horned Frogs would be a valuable first impression in Texas.”
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College Football News: Nevada, Boise State, Fresno State, UNLV, San Diego State rank among Pac-12 picks
Pete Fiutak wrote of the Broncos’ possible adjustment to the Pac-12: “For football fans, this is easy. From a business perspective, this is difficult without many eyeballs, and with the region already partially occupied by Washington State and Oregon.”
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Trojans Wire: Fresno State, San Diego State easy picks as major Pac-12 expansion candidates
Matt Wadleigh writes: “Fresno State and San Diego State are easy choices as top contenders, and several other Mountain West teams would be interested in moving to the Pac-12. SMU has also come up in some industry discussions and reviews. Poaching Houston from the Big 12 isn’t likely, but George Kliavkoff said the Pac-12 hasn’t decided whether to pursue a Big 12 school as an expansion option.”
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The Athletic: San Diego State, Boise State claim Pac-12 first, Houston, TCU, Texas Tech next
On Houston and TCU, Doug Haller wrote: Nine months ago, with the sport still reeling from the announcement of Texas and Oklahoma’s SEC intentions, the Pac-12 considered expansion. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that Houston and TCU were the conference’s top targets. Eventually, the Pac-12 stuck with 12, Houston settled into the Big 12, and everything looked good. Until Thursday. Location-wise, this works. Dallas-Fort Worth is the nation’s fifth largest media market. Houston is eighth. That would also put the Pac-12 in the heart of talent-rich Texas, which would help with recruiting. Houston makes sense. TCU brings an issue in that the Pac-12 has typically had little interest in schools with religious beliefs. But in recent years, TCU has distanced itself from those ties. The Pac-12 is also not in a position to be selective.”
The site also listed SMU and UNLV as possible conference options to consider when expanding.
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Contact Jeremy Cluff at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @Jeremy_Cluff.
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This article originally appeared in the Arizona Republic: Pac-12 expansion rankings: Best fits in college conference realignment