College Football

Texas, OU Exit Will Have Major Impact on Big 12 Cities, Study Finds

A Waco Economist estimates it could cost Fort Worth And Waco Millions of dollars.

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The universities of Texas and Oklahoma on Friday accepted invitations to join the Southeastern Conference beginning in 2025, which will leave the Big12 without its two biggest brands.

The eight remaining universities in the latter conference include TCU in Fort Worth. Economist Ray Perryman of the Perryman Group studied the financial impact on those eight schools and their cities.

“As you would expect these communities suffer a lot,” Perryman said.

Depending on what happens to the conference, Perryman estimated it could cost the economies tens of millions of dollars and thousands of jobs.

“Now we are watching to see what is the actual out date. Is it 2025? Is it something before that? What are the moves going to be for TCU and how do you market Fort Worth and the university in the right way moving forward so we are not negatively impacting our tourism numbers?” Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker asked.

Parker and the CEO of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce said they both support TCU and that they had plenty of time to make decisions.

“I think at the end of the day TCU is an amazing school, with an amazing reputation, amazing athletic program" Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce CEO Brandom Gengelbach said. "So we’re going to end up on the other side of this, just my opinion, in a great spot."

This week, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) announced a new Senate Select Committee on the future of college sports in Texas. The committee meets for the first time Monday. It includes state Senator Beverly Powell (D-Fort Worth).

“I expect in the beginning of this committee that we will have basically three charges, and that is to understand our alternatives for the reorganization of the conference for our states institutions, that we will look to see how we can mitigate the repercussions for the remaining institutions, and that we will look to the future with purpose,” Powell said.

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