Several sources are reporting that TCU has been invited to join the Big 12 Conference.
The Horned Frogs, who are currently members of the Mountain West Conference, were slated to become a member of the Big East next season, but they will be part of the Big 12 starting in 2012 instead.
Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds released a statement on Thursday confirming reports that TCU has been invited to join the Big 12.
"We're proud that TCU has been invited to join the Big 12," Dodds said in the statement. "Their commitment to academics and success on the field make them an excellent fit. With a solid budget and strong financial support, they have been proactive at improving facilities. Their close proximity to all conference institutions makes for a comfortable travel situation."
The Associated Press is reporting that leaders of the Big 12 have "authorized negotiations" with TCU. TCU Chancellor Victor Boschini said the Big 12 discussions "have huge implications for TCU" and would allow the school "to return to old rivalries."
There's no word yet on the status of Missouri, which has not committed to the Big 12 and is reportedly looking to join the Southeastern Conference.
"The addition of TCU replaces Texas A&M, which is headed to the SEC," wrote Brett McMurphy of CBSSports.com. "If Missouri remains in the league, sources said the Big 12 is expected to remain at 10 schools."
Oklahoma president David Boren released a statement in support of TCU being invited to join the Big 12. He also hinted that the Big 12 may not be done adding schools.
"TCU is an excellent choice as a new member of the conference," Boren said in a statement. "They bring strong athletics and academic credentials and were enthusiastically and unanimously supported by all of the members of the conference. There could be other additions in the future."
Many pundits believed BYU would be the first school invited by the Big 12. If Missouri leaves for the SEC, the league could add three more schools to push the membership back to 12. BYU, Louisville, West Virginia and Cincinnati are considered to be the leading candidates.
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