SEC says Missouri has not been invited to join

Tuesday, September 20, 2011 | 5:27 p.m. CDT; updated 9:40 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, September 20, 2011

COLUMBIA — A spokesman for the Southeastern Conference said the conference has not extended an invitation to join the league to Missouri. Earlier Tuesday afternoon, the Kansas City Star reported that Missouri had an invitation from the conference but that it was contingent upon the collapse of the Big 12.

"The SEC has not extended an invitation to any school beyond Texas A&M since it extended invitations to Arkansas and South Carolina," SEC Associate Commissioner Charles Bloom said via email.

The UM System Board of Curators called a meeting scheduled for Thursday morning, but its spokeswoman, Jennifer Hollingshead, said the meeting was not called because of athletics.

"The primary purpose of the meeting is not related to athletics. However, since the whole board is meeting anyway, the curators do expect to receive an update on the Big 12 Conference," Hollingshead said. "There will be no action taken (related to athletics) and there is no statement planned at this time."

MU Chancellor Brady Deaton could not be reached, and Athletic Director Mike Alden declined comment to reporters at the MU Green Tennis Center's groundbreaking ceremony and open house Tuesday afternoon.

Curator Wayne Goode said by phone Tuesday afternoon that the school will have to assess the situation carefully.

"Whenever we address this issue, I will need to look at all the options available at that time," Goode said. "Right now, there's nothing officially on the table, and that's about all I can say about it."

The Star also reported that the Kansas Board of Regents will meet Thursday with the topic of conference realignment on its agenda. Board chairman Ed McKechnie told the Star that officials from both Kansas and Kansas State are set to attend.

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Ellis Smith September 21, 2011 | 8:45 p.m.
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