Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard says there have been no discussions in the Big-12 Conference about the possibility of adding Florida State. Speculation began last week that the Seminoles may be considering a move after officials expressed disappointment in a new television package negotiated by the Atlantic Coast Conference.
“It’s fun to watch all the national debate when that discussion hasn’t even taken place in the Big 12…makes you wonder how news cycles work,” Pollard says. Pollard admits it’s much better to be perceived as a “buyer” rather than a “seller”.
The past two years has seen four schools leave the conference and on at least two occasions the future of the Big 12 was in doubt. “it’s good to be on an island that people want to be on versus an island that people don’t want to be one,” Pollard says. “Times have changed so quickly. You know we’re in a good spot right now, a really good spot.”
Pollard says his preference right now is to remain at ten members. “Philosophically the athletic directors in the Big 12 prefer 10. Our heads are not buried in the sand, if an opportunity exists that we feel is beneficial for our league, we would consider it. But right now until the B-C-S gets settled, we feel we’re in the driver’s seat because our champion doesn’t have to play and extra game and we like the fact that in 10, everybody gets to play everybody,” Pollard explains.
With a new commissioner in place and the addition of West Virginia and TCU, Pollard feels the conference is on stable ground. He says they have come a long way in the last two years with shared revenue and a new TV deal on the horizon. “Things couldn’t look better for the Big 12 right now,” Pollard says.
Pollard and several Iowa State coaches are in the midst of the Cyclone Tailgate Tour across the state and he says there is a positive feeling throughout the fan base about the future of the Big-12 and the Iowa State athletic program.