UPDATE: SEC post saying Missouri to join league appears then disappears

Thursday, October 27, 2011 | 11:58 p.m. CDT; updated 9:18 a.m. CDT, Friday, October 28, 2011
On Thursday, the SEC Digital Network, the official website of the Southeastern Conference, published an article dated Oct. 22, 2011 that announced Missouri had become the SEC's 14th team. Shortly after, the page was removed.

*UPDATE: This story has been updated to include a response from the Southeastern Conference.

And the conference realignment chaos takes its latest tumultuous turn.

Bubbling up like a groundswell on Twitter late Thursday night came the news that the Southeastern Conference had officially added Missouri as its 14th member. Surely, this was just another rumor, another anonymous source spouting silly nonsense. Right?


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Not so much. Links started popping up, one of the earliest coming from Clay Travis, a sportswriter and radio host from Nashville. The links didn't lead to a sketchy blog or random message board.

Instead they went straight to the SEC digital network, the official website for the Southeastern Conference.

The first paragraph of the release read:

"Given the ever-changing conference paradigm over the past year, the Southeastern Conference has continued to demonstrate its commitment to maintaining its stature as one of the nation's premier conferences by welcoming the University of Missouri as the league's 14th member, Commissioner Mike Slive announced Monday."

At the top corner of the page, the article showed it was updated October 22. If updated last Saturday, would that mean Missouri was supposed to join the SEC this Monday? Or, if the update day was wrong, maybe the announcement was meant for this upcoming Monday? Maybe the release was never meant to be posted at all?

Questions went unanswered. No one responded to phone calls to the SEC on Thursday night.

Ten minutes later, the post was down.

The replacement page showed only one sentence.

"That article is missing."

As is the presence of clarity when it comes to conference realignment.

* On Friday, SEC spokesman Charles Bloom addressed the disappearing post on his Twitter account. The tweet read: "Web vendor made mistake. No agreement between #SEC and Missouri."

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Ellis Smith October 28, 2011 | 8:06 a.m.

Well it's pretty obvious, isn't it? They were just "Whistling Dixie."

It will sure be nice when all this is over.

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