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Study: Big 12 Communities Could Lose $1B in Shake-Up

Brock Fritz

Two of the highest-profile athletic departments in the country changing conferences will have a ripple effect across a number of colleges and communities.

According to a study by The Perryman Group, the impending transition of Texas and Oklahoma from the Big 12 Conference to the Southeastern Conference will lead to significant financial losses for the remaining Big 12 schools due to factors like smaller television deals and lower attendance.

The Perryman Group’s study included two scenarios related to Texas and Oklahoma moving to the SEC in 2025.

“In Scenario 1, the Big 12 Conference remains largely intact with the remaining eight teams (and potentially expands), with television revenues and attendance patterns similar to those in the American Athletic Conference (adjusted for specific characteristics of the individual schools),” the study explains. “Scenario 2 assumes the Big 12 Conference is not maintained and individual schools must seek opportunities elsewhere, with ultimate performance mirroring the five most successful athletic programs in the Mountain West Conference (the next most successful league following the American Athletic Conference) adjusted for specific characteristics of the individual schools.”

Both scenarios led to significant losses. Scenario 1 found that Big 12 communities could cause losses of $938.9 million in annual gross product and 12,623 jobs. Scenario 2 resulted in expected losses of $1.3 billion in annual gross product and 18,063 jobs.

Related content: Regents to A&M President: Approve SEC Expansion

“Looking specifically at the Texas universities, if Texas joins the SEC, there will undoubtedly be benefits for the university and the Austin area. However, the Waco, Lubbock, and Fort Worth areas would face negative economic consequences due to effects on Baylor University, Texas Tech University, and Texas Christian University,” The Perryman Group study reads. “Total annual losses for these three communities were found to include $397.7 million in annual gross product and 5,322 jobs under Scenario 1 and $569.1 million in annual gross product and 7,615 jobs under Scenario 2 (including multiplier effects).”

According to Everything Lubbock, The Perryman Group estimated that the realignment could have a $117-$161 million economic impact in Lubbock. The home of Texas Tech could reportedly also see 1,600-2,200 lost jobs and $6-8.6 million in lost local tax revenue.

Related content: Cease-and-Desist Accuses ESPN of Destabilizing Big 12

Related content: Texas, Oklahoma Add Scheduling Challenge for SEC

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