Sep 2, 2012; Waco, TX, USA; A general view of the Big 12 logo at Floyd Casey Stadium before the game between the Baylor Bears and the Southern Methodist Mustangs. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Breaking: Cincinnati Will Receive Big 12 Invite And Doesn’t Know What To Do With It

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Big big big news, everyone. Sources* close to Cincy on the Prowl revealed to us over the weekend that the Big 12 has caved under the pressure of the other power conferences adding members like rabbits and have decided to expand. The University of Cincinnati was the first to be extended an invitation.

*Mice with microphones attached to their heads

It seems UC athletics has finally been thrown the lifeline they’ve been long hoping for. They will finally have the opportunity to potentially realize tens-of-millions of dollars in extra revenue by way of a new television contract, no longer forcing coaches to play janitor on the weekends. Additionally, Bearcats athletics will potentially ascend to the high profile of playing Big 12 schools like Texas and Oklahoma, not to mention access to the major bowl games. It seems in the end everything will work out alright for UC after being left behind for so many years.

But there’s a problem.

“We don’t know if we should accept it”, Cincinnati athletic director Mike Bohn claimed.

Jan 1, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; The Cincinnati Bearcats dance team, cheerleaders, and basketball team celebrate a 65-57 win over the Southern Methodist Mustangs at Fifth Third Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rob Leifheit-USA TODAY Sports

Cincy on the Prowl caught up with Bohn late Sunday night, who answered the door in Carebear feetsie pajamas and provided some detail on the news and UC’s predicament. “We’ve won league titles over the last few years. We have the championship hardware in the Lindner Center trophy case to prove that. But recognition from higher profile conferences and even an opportunity to join them? That’s uncharted territory for us.”

Learning of the news late last week and keeping it under wraps, the university decided to do their due diligence by seeking council from several sources. UC even went so far as to contact past university presidents. Nancy Zimpher advised that “Cincinnati liquidate the athletic department and transform the Lindner Center into a hub for manufacturing pastel blouses and lead based face powder.”

Bohn didn’t indicate one way or the other if he was in favor of that suggestion, merely commenting that it was tabled “as Plan C for now.”

It’s unclear just how Cincinnati is leaning but for numerous reasons I could definitely see them accepting this invitation. Firstly, a Big 12 media contract would pour millions and millions of much need media dollars into UC’s coffers. That extra cash would go a long way to sweeting Mick Cronin and Tommy Tuberville’s budget, investing in a renovated basketball arena, and in general keeping the athletic department’s head above water. Additionally the exposure of the Big 12 would put UC athletics on a platform to regenerate excitement in the programs. We all know most casual fans in this city won’t even acknowledge Tulane’s existence let alone get off the couch to watch UC play them. Finally, a spot in the Big 12 will grant Cincinnati access to the major bowls in the new playoff system beginning next season.

While I expect UC to accept the Big 12’s invitation, Bohn and the Bearcats’ athletic department are unsure of what to do.

“It’s a hurdle we weren’t planning to cross,” Bohn said, “but we’ll convene over the next several weeks and decide how to act on this invitation. If it comes down to it and we still can’t make a decision, we’re more than prepared to flip a coin in true AAC style.”

The above post is 100% joking in nature as a part of Cincy on the Prowl’s April Fools Day series. All news and quotes are completely fictitious. April fools, everyone!

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