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Texas A&M To The SEC? Conference Realignment Rumors Showed Up Late This Year

We're inside three weeks 'til the kickoff of the 2011 college football season; a mere 20 days stand between a slavering audience and the majesty of Murray State-Louisville, so what's on the lips of a skyrocketing number of NCAA pundits from Miami to Seattle? Conference realignment! What else? It seems Texas A&M, weary of all the intangible advantages the Longhorn Network seems poised to hand the hated Longhorns, and pretty well-versed in threatening to leave the Big 12 after last summer's go-round, have begun the slow beat to drum the Aggies into the SEC. Didn't we just do this?

Facts are few and sources fewer, but what we know as of Friday afternoon is collected here. Enjoy?  

• According to our friends at Rivals, the university could vote to join the SEC for the 2012 season on August 22. A university spokesman denies a deal is already in place, and beyond that named sources dry out completely.

• The Texas House Higher Education Committee has scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, August 16 to discuss the future of the university's athletic program. A terse note confirming such is available here. What Texas state politicians do at this juncture will be a not-to-be-missed sideshow.

• And if they want to go, is it even up to them? Not without a vote-in from the SEC presidents, who may or may not be meeting on this very topic.

• So what if the university decides this is a bad idea, again? They might still have to go or risk looking like petulant snit-pitchers. 

• And who might replace them in the Big 12 if they do go? Houston's being floated, and has been floated before. 

• And who might accompany Texas A&M in a hypothetical bolt to the SEC? Florida State (who would likely face shrieking opposition from Florida)! Or Virginia Tech (who say they'd turn the invite down, probably!) Or nobody at all, including Texas A&M, because seriously, it's not that we're necessarily opposed to or not entertained by the machinations of the superconference race, but we're so close to real, live, actual football, and talking about anything else in the 20 days between us and it just seems like an exhausting waste of your time and ours.