The general rule of thumb in college athletics is any idea that will increase revenue is a good idea regardless of what other sacrifices might have to be made.

Most folks seem convinced the presidents and chancellors of the Pac-12 Conference will stay true to that way of thinking when it comes to the possibility of further expanding the league to 16 teams and adding Texas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.

Count me as one who believes they will come to their senses and opt not to make this move.


Back in the spring of 2010 when the Pac-10 Conference was looking to expand, commissioner Larry Scott considered a bold idea of stealing half of the Big 12 Conference to create the first super conference of 16 teams.

Scott's line of thinking at the time was that he needed those teams from Texas and Oklahoma to land a huge television rights deal for the league. It turned out those teams opted to stay in the Big 12 and Scott still managed to secure a whopper of a deal by adding only Colorado and Utah. The 12-year, $3 billion agreement with ESPN and FOX is the standard in college sports at the moment and has drastically increased the television revenue of every school in the new Pac-12. Those revenues are going to grow larger without adding any schools once the Pac-12 networks are up and running for a few years.

Some say adding those other four teams makes sense because it would only enrich everyone further. That is surely the case, but the truth is no one really knows by how much.

It is also true that adding powerhouse athletic departments to the league such as Texas and Oklahoma, and to a lesser extent, Oklahoma State, will significantly increase the level of difficulty in winning championships in just about every sport.

So the key question Pac-12 presidents and chancellors and Scott must ask themselves is, at what price is it worth it?

Does adding another $2, $5 or $10 million to the coffers each year make it easier to stomach the idea that USC and Oregon fans might have to watch Texas or Oklahoma play for a national title in football after losing to them in the Pac-12 championship game? Does the Stanford women's basketball team really want to have to go through Texas and Oklahoma just to win its conference each year? What about the Arizona and UCLA men's basketball programs?

And those are just the powerhouses. Imagine what the view of this 16-team behemoth looks like from Colorado football coach Jon Embree's office in the Dal Ward Center and other coaches like him. The Buffs would likely be placed in a division with the four new teams, Utah and the Arizona schools, regardless of whether that included a pod system.

CU left its former Big 12 partners in favor of the Pac-12 for a variety of reasons, including a better cultural fit and a better academic fit. The Buffs also yearned to play more games in front of their alumni on the West Coast.

Adding the four schools or even two schools from the Big 12 would surely mean fewer games on the West Coast each year and more games against the new additions because CU is the eastern-most school in the league already.

The reality is there are probably just as many, if not more, competitive negatives than financial positives to adding the teams from the Big 12, and we haven't even discussed how presidents, chancellors and faculty members around the Pac-12 would feel about adding a school with the academic reputations of Oklahoma State.

The Center of World-Class Universities recently released its annual rankings of the top 500 universities in the world. Nine Pac-12 institutions made the top 80 (CU was No. 32). OSU didn't make it at all. Enough said.

Good timing

Utah might be catching USC at a good time in its attempt to win its first Pac-12 Conference game in history on the road at the Coliseum this week. The Trojans have proven tough to beat over the past decade at home winning 52 of their last 59 home games. However, five of those seven losses have come in the past 10 home games.

In addition, USC is a young team this fall. Of the 43 Trojans who played in the season opener against Minnesota, only 10 were seniors.

Legend in the making

California coach Jeff Tedford will be trying to earn his 74th career victory as head coach at the school Saturday at Folsom Field against the Buffs. If he is successful, he will tie Andy Smith for the Cal school record for coaching victories in football.

Tedford already is the career wins leader in the modern era and he also is tops at the school in games coached. Smith established a 74-16-7 record during his tenure in Berkeley from 1916 to 1925. Tedford's career record is 73-42-0.

Avoid this guy

Stanford wide receiver and kickoff return man Chris Owusu returned the second-half kickoff for 59 yards in the season opener against San Jose State. It was the seventh kickoff return of at least 50 yards in Owusu's career, and he missed half of his junior season last fall with injuries.

Owusu began the season with a 27.9 yard career average on kickoff returns, tops all-time at Stanford. He has returned three for touchdowns in his career.

Numbers game

155 The number of freshmen and redshirt freshmen who played for the first time in their collegiate careers for Pac-12 teams in Week 1. Washington State led the league with 19 true and redshirt freshman playing in its win over Eastern Washington. Stanford and Oregon State each had 16.

Who's hot -- Arizona quarterback Nick Foles started the season completing 34-of-42 passes for 419 yards and five touchdowns.

Who's not -- Oregon State quarterback Ryan Katz went 11 for 22 for 87 yards and an interception before being benched in an overtime loss to Sacramento State.