Every single SEC delegation voted to accept both Oklahoma and Texas to the SEC Thursday afternoon, paving the way for both schools to officially accept their invitations Friday.
All 14 SEC delegations — presidents and chancellors of each SEC school — voted to accept the Big 12 powerhouses, including Texas A&M. A&M initially offered resistance against its former rivals, expressing the desire to remain the only SEC school from Texas. However, the allure of increased revenue and opportunity won out in the end.
SEC presidents, as expected, have voted to extend a membership invitation to Texas & Oklahoma, sources tell @SINow.
OU and Texas board of regents meet Friday to accept the invitation – the final step in securing the richest and most powerful conference in college sports history.
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) July 29, 2021
After Sports Illustrated‘s Ross Dellenger reported the news of the SEC accepting Oklahoma and Texas, the official SEC Twitter account confirmed the news, saying both schools will join the conference on July 1, 2025.
The SEC commissioner Greg Sankey’s official statement said, “today’s unanimous vote is both a testament to the SEC’s longstanding spirit of unity and mutual cooperation, as well as a recognition of the outstanding legacies of academic and athletic excellence established by the Universities of Oklahoma and Texas. I greatly appreciate the collective efforts of our Presidents and Chancellors in considering and acting upon each school’s membership interest.”
NEWS | The @SEC Presidents & Chancellors voted unanimously Thursday to extend membership invitations to the University of Oklahoma and the University of Texas to join the SEC effective July 1, 2025, with competition to begin in all sports for the 2025-26 academic year.
— Southeastern Conference (@SEC) July 29, 2021
However, The Athletic‘s Nicole Auerbach raised two points: 1.) the vote was always going to be unanimous and 2.) no one expects Oklahoma and Texas to wait until 2025 to join the SEC.
Two notes: Yes, of course the vote was going to end up being unanimous. And, no, no one expects that it'll take until 2025 for us to see Oklahoma and Texas competing in the SEC. #lawyers
— Nicole Auerbach (@NicoleAuerbach) July 29, 2021
While the SEC announced the two Big 12 schools will join the conference in 2025, their addition to the SEC will likely be much sooner. The next steps for Oklahoma and Texas will come tomorrow at each schools’ press conferences — accepting the invitation from the SEC.
With a ~$75 million buyout fee to exit the Big 12 before the current TV deal expires (or the dissolution of the Big 12 to wipe out the buyout), the following steps will likely draw out and lead to some significant struggles over the almighty dollar. The Big 12 will now officially move toward bolstering the conference in the absence of its two most well-known members.