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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Aggies, Big 12 agree to terms

According to a Texas A&M University press release issued Tuesday, Texas A&M and the Big 12 conference have reached an agreement on withdrawal terms for the Aggies’ July 1 transition to the Southeastern Conference.
In the agreed settlement between the two parties, the Big 12 will withhold approximately $12.41 million from A&M — money that would otherwise be distributed to the Aggies by the conference in fiscal year 2012. A&M expects, however, to receive some monetary benefits from the Big 12 signed television contract with Fox Sports, among other unspecified concessions.
A&M’s total losses from the settlement, all considered are expected to be $9.31 million. A&M president R. Bowen Loftin said he was thankful for the way the negotiation was conducted.
“We appreciate the Big 12 working with us on a quick and amicable settlement,” Loftin said in the press release.
Big 12 commissioner Chuck Neinas expressed similar sentiments.
“This agreement was accomplished through a collegial, respectful process among the conference, its institutions and Texas A&M University that led to a resolution that all parties believe is fair,” Neinas said.
The Aggies will leave the Big 12 as the highest ranked overall athletic department in the conference. A&M finished eighth in overall athletics in the annual Learfield Sports Cup in 2011. John Sharp, chancellor of the Texas A&M University System, said the SEC would allow the Aggies to expose their successful athletics — and academics — more efficiently.
“Texas A&M’s move to the SEC increases the University’s geographic footprint and will bring national recognition to this great institution, which it certainly deserves,” Sharp said. “We look forward to the increased exposure that the SEC will provide Texas A&M, not only in athletics but also in teaching and research.”
One of the initial members of the Big 12 Conference in 1996 after the dissolution of the Southwest Conference, A&M won a record nine conference championships in 2011. Conference championships in women’s soccer, women’s swimming and men’s and women’s indoor track give the Aggies four titles this season. A&M will take that momentum into the SEC.
“I’m happy that A&M settled the deal with the Big 12 Conference,” Liz Gunther, junior marketing major, said. “I look forward to see A&M play in the SEC next year.”

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