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Baylor releases statement on Big 12 Conference membership

Baylor University
Posted at 4:51 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-23 17:52:42-04

Baylor University released a statement on the news of the University of Texas and the University of Oklahoma's possible move to the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone and Mack B. Rhoades, vice president and director of intercollegiate athletics, noted in the message the community's concerns about how the Big 12 Conference membership change may impact the school and Waco community.

"We understand the significance and urgency of this matter, as our conference membership impacts not only Baylor, but also the Waco community, the state of Texas and beyond," said Livingstone and Rhoades. "Conference affiliation has the power to greatly enhance our institution’s academic and athletic national standing and visibility while also expanding academic and research opportunities available to faculty, students and our communities."

The letter stated that the university's board of regents, and other Baylor leaders are actively communicating with Big 12 to ensure the school is in a strong position going forward.

"In the midst of what promises to be a lot of angst and speculation, we will continue to focus on what we can control and support our student-athletes and staffs," said the message. "And, as the landscape of college athletics continues to change, we maintain an unshakable belief in the strength and resiliency of Baylor and the Baylor brand."

The message expressed the importance of maintaining five “Power Five” institutions, and placed the community's angst, speculation, and concerns about the economy at the forefront of what they may address in conversations with leaders.