The Latest: TCU's Patterson knew instability before Big 12
FRISCO, Texas (AP) — The Latest on Big 12 media days (all times local):
Ask Gary Patterson about the instability that once threatened the future of the Big 12 and the TCU coach will bring up his own experience with conference shuffling.
Patterson has been in four conferences since joining the Horned Frogs as defensive coordinator in 1998. And that's not counting the Big East, which TCU was preparing to join before the Big 12 came calling seven years ago after losing Texas A&M, Missouri, Colorado and Nebraska.
The Western Athletic was the first league after TCU wasn't invited to join the Big 12 when the Southwest Conference disbanded. After four years in Conference USA, the Horned Frogs moved to the Mountain West.
Patterson says he doesn't know "why anybody thought the Big 12 had instability" because "you should have been in all the conferences I've been in."
Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby would prefer to have every conference playing nine league games, but he says even that wouldn't be enough to make all things equal.
The number of conference games is one of the points of discussion related to the Power Five leagues qualifying for the four-team College Football Playoff. The Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast have eight-game conference schedules, while the Big 12, the Pac-12 and Big Ten play nine.
But the 10-team Big 12 is the only conference with a round-robin league schedule.
Bowlsby said as media days opened Monday in the Dallas area that a "level playing field" isn't possible "because in a league with 14 or 15 members, even if you're going to nine you're going to have a bunch you don't play."
The Big 12 boss also said he doesn't think it's realistic to dictate to conferences how many league games each should play.
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