2. A conspiracy theorist’s reason for conference expansion: Start with the assumption that Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany and SEC commissioner Mike Slive don’t particularly like each other.
It goes back to this treatise posted on the Big Ten’s website almost 3½ years ago. Pay attention to Delany’s line, “… it seems premature for us to lower our admission standards.” That’s a clear shot at the SEC and seems more pertinent today with the league having won the last four national championships. We all know that expansion is about money and market share and television, but could it have an ulterior motive? Consider the Rose Bowl’s place in a world of 16-team super conferences. With an expanded Pac-10 and Big Ten, the Rose would be partners with 32 of the biggest and best football programs in the country, almost 27 percent of Division I-A. That list would include USC, Ohio State, Michigan, Texas and Oklahoma.